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A City Girls Guide to Outdoors: 5 patios, 1 day                                    

When summer hits it’s great to be outdoors, am I right? The sun beating down on your face, the wind in your hair, the limited amount of layers you need to wear – pure bliss! Summer is for being outdoors and being outdoors is great until that one friend (and we all have one) inundates your Instagram feed with pictures of themselves mountain biking, white water rafting, camping, running the trails –enjoying the #sweatlife. This is all fine and dandy; I admire these outdoor hobbies and can understand the appeal from afar. But let’s get real here for a minute – summer is all about a great brew and great food on a great patio!

So here’s my guide to 5 Guelph patios in 1 day:

1. We start our patio journey in this magical little secret garden at With The GrainIf you were to ask where do the locals go?  This is the spot. Everything is delicious. You can start with brunch or sip a cup of tea here at lunch. The patio is quaint, fresh and pretty perfect right?

My pick: Try a cup of chili with all the toppings, a side of roasted squash salad, with an iced tea and DO NOT leave without having a lemon square – that’s an order!!

WTG patio

2. It’s halfway through the day now and you need a coffee (or a second or third), let’s get you there. Red Brick Cafe has great coffee and your pick of patios. Out front is the newly built wood haven where you can perch, sip and read the paper. Out back is a cool, alleyway hangin’ spot, more privacy and stronger drinks as the day turns into night.

My pick: Iced coffee by day, sangria by night.  Try the muffin of the day too!

Red Brick Patio

3. In terms of patios, this one will have you in the heart of downtown Guelph. Buon Gusto has a beauty patio right in St. Georges Square; its unique shape makes each table feel private which really enhances the dining experience in such a public spot. Let’s have lunch!

My pick: If they happen to have salmon on special when you are there – GET IT! Otherwise start with the roasted cauliflower and you will never go wrong with the margherita pizza. Don’t forget a glass of bubbly too – the prosecco to be exact.

BG patio

4. Dinnertime! Miijidaa café and bistro’s patio has been transformed into quite the oasis, flowing seamlessly from indoors through tall windows that separate the dining room and patio.  This is a patio you can really unwind on, my tip is to reserve the beautiful, hand crafted farmers table for a group patio get together!

My pick: If you’re feeling like fish and chips then definitely get – the fish and chips! (The chips are double fried, so they’re crispy to perfection!) I also recommend the hay smoked duck breast and a perfect elk scotch egg to start (maybe throw in some PEI mussels too). And don’t forget a great brew, there are lots of great local brews on tap (go with the Wellington seasonal) or try the blueberry port mojito!

Miijidaa patio

5. By now you have visited four great patios in one day, and you’re feeling pretty full, let’s finish off with a solid local pint or two at a Guelph rite of passage: The Wooly.  Now you may be swayed by the charming balcony in front of this beautiful old house, but if you can’t find a spot don’t worry, swing around back to a generous, roofed patio; that’s right, everyone’s ultimate patio dream of chilling in the rain.

My pick: Definitely get a draught sampler; you can try four different beers in adorably small glasses. With a wide range of Guelph beers on tap, you’ll have lots of options. Go with a light and dark beer from Wellington Brew, snag one from Stonehammer and throw in the Sleeman light if they have it.

Woolwich Arms patio


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