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GETTING OUT: Great Outdoor Dining Spots

Thursday, July 19, 2012


With the heat wave ending and sunny skies in the forecast now is the perfect time to check out some of Worcester’s outdoor dining spots. Whether you’re going upscale or looking for something more casual, the city has plenty of offerings. Here are some of the best places to quench your thirst, satisfy your cravings, and soak in the sun.

VIA Italian Table

89 Shrewsbury Street, Worcester
(508) 754-4842

With a patio that’s open three seasons a year, VIA is fully committed to the al fresco dining experience. Serving up “Italian comfort food,” VIA’s lunch and dinner menus feature staples of Italian cooking such as beef braciole, lasagna Bolognese, baked ziti, and many more. If you’re looking for a cocktail and a snack, head on out to the patio for happy hour, which features $6 appetizers and vodka drinks. The happy hour special is available Monday-Friday from 4-6:30 PM.

For the true carnivore now through August 5 VIA is offering a culinary experience: PigFest. Not only is the entire menu devoted to traditional Italian pork dishes, but also 50 percent of the proceeds benefit the Community Harvest Project in North Grafton.


BABA Restaurant and Sushi Bar

309 Park Avenue, Worcester
(508) 752-8822

Named one of the “Top 100 Restaurants in the US,” Baba Sushi is one of the hippest and highest rated places in town. Sample award-winning chef and owner Wilson Wang’s creative culinary creations while sitting on the Japanese style outdoor patio.

For a truly unique experience sign up for a sushi making class, offered Sundays from 2:30-4 PM.

Nuovo Restaurant

92 Shrewsbury Street, Worcester
(508) 796-5915

Although a newcomer to the Shrewsbury Street lineup, Nuovo’s Italian and Mediterranean fare has earned strong reviews. For two years in a row Nuovo has won the Diner’s Choice award from OpenTable.com. Open Tuesday-Friday, the restaurant offers a $5 lunch menu every day. From 4-6:30 PM and from 10 PM to close Nuovo also offers $5 martinis and appetizers menu. Sit on the patio and sample Nuovo’s many offerings.

Armsby Abbey

144 Main Street, Worcester
(508) 795-1012

If you’re looking to quench your thirst with a cold beer there’s no better place in town than the Armsby Abbey. Conveniently located in downtown Worcester, Armsby Abbey has 22 beers on tap in addition to a full bar and a menu stocked with locally sourced ingredients. Currently the Abbey is featuring Farmstead Cheeses from across New England that can be paired with chef’s accompaniments and house-baked bread.

Bring the family for lunch but after 6 PM Armsby Abbey is strictly 21 plus. Get there early to secure a table, especially if you want to be outside.  

Flying Rhino Café and Watering Hole

278 Shrewsbury Street, Worcester
(508) 757-1450

Located in the heart of Shrewsbury Street, the Flying Rhino Café and Watering Hole is a great place to grab a bite to eat. Whether you’re people watching from the sidewalk seating or enjoying a martini at the tiki hut on the deck, owner Paul Barber said there is always a breeze to keep you cool. The Flying Rhino is well known for an eclectic menu that features an array of options from artisan sandwiches, great salads, and entrees ranging from sesame chicken to lobster ravioli.

Ceres Bistro at Beechwood Hotel Restaurant

363 Plantation Street, Worcester
(508) 754-2000


No list of Worcester’s outdoor dining locales would be complete without Ceres Bistro. Located at the Beechwood Hotel, Ceres is known for its commitment to fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Ceres' patio is a wonderful place to enjoy casual fine dining.

Ceres is offering several events this summer. Each Thursday and Friday from now until the end of July Ceres is hosting its summer BBQ menu on the patio for $15 a person from 5-8 PM. From now until the end of August every Thursday from 6-9 PM is Jazz Night and every Friday from 7-11 PM features a Top 40’s DJ. 


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