It's that time again. Restaurants are doubling their dining space, reopening rooftops and allowing chairs and tables to spill out onto the sidewalk for relaxing al fresco dinners and drinks.
La Bottega at The Maritime Hotel
363 W. 16th St.
Even on weekday nights, a line of high-heeled women is always coming and going for cocktails and dinner at the outdoor space at this Chelsea hotel. La Bottega boasts a huge outdoor patio under the sky and always promises an interesting array of fellow diners. Snack on appetizers like sliced steak, arugula and tomato, or yellowfin tuna before tasting their pizzas and pastas.
330 W. 40th St., 212-380-1195
The rooftop at the Sky Room in Hell's Kitchen provides 360-
degree open-air views of the Statue of Liberty and Midtown Manhattan. Atop the Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriott Times Square, it separates its spaces into the Cube balcony and a terrace with a retractable roof, allowing you to maintain the views and atmosphere even during a pop-up storm. The space also promises an epic view of the Fourth of July fireworks over the Hudson River.
518 W. 27th St., 212-525-0000
Sneak in a view of the High Line and the Empire State Building at the Americano's rooftop space. The hotel's restaurant mixes Latin and French fare, evidenced by guacamole and empanadas alongside lamb saddle. Make sure to try the cocktails, like the new Reinvention -- envisioned as an updated Cosmopolitan, it's refreshing but not overwhelmingly sweet. The restaurant also has a ground-floor terrace space that's surprisingly quiet, despite its Chelsea locale.
120 E. 15th St., 212-677-2900
On a warm evening, grab a mixed drink, cold beer or chilled glass of wine at this relaxed sports bar by Union Square. Inside, 21 televisions trumpet the night's games, but outside, tables and chairs are set up along Irving Place, offering a spot to watch people walking to and from Union Square and shows at Irving Plaza. Their reasonable happy hour offers $3 Bud Light drafts and two-for-one cocktails until 7 p.m., Monday to Thursday, and until 10 p.m. on Friday. Plus, if you grab a seat facing uptown, you can catch a view of the Chrysler Building twinkling.
Bar Seven Five
75 Wall St., 212-590-1234
For a change from downtown's Irish bars and gastropubs, try Bar Seven Five at Andaz, a Wall Street hotel with an outdoor terrace. The hotel matches its sleek decor and atmosphere to the surrounding area -- on the menu, you'll find cocktails like the Wall Street, a soothing match to a long day, or the Perfect Pearl Manhattan. For the bar menu, which includes a crab cake with roasted pepper and corn salsa, Andaz gets as much of its food locally as possible, even hosting a weekly farmer's market.
184 N. 10th St.
This Williamsburg hot spot used to be an abandoned factory, but was transformed into an industrial-styled space with high ceilings that offers Mediterranean dishes and an outdoor patio. Tapas include babaganoush, foie gras and squid with garlic and parsley. Also Mediterranean-themed, the Turkish Coffee Martini mixes espresso, cream liqueur and Turkish coffee.
Brunch in the sun
If you're in the mood for people-watching with your brunch cocktail, sit at one of the sidewalk tables at SoHo's Gemma.
409 W. 13th St.
Beaumarchais promises a brunch that will transport you to the French Riviera, including Saint Tropez tunes spun by a DJ and an atmosphere that easily facilitates daytime drinking.