Chamber staff members are still brainstorming additions to the outdoor dining list, which will be officially unveiled when the chamber premieres an updated version of its Web site at the end of August.
The arrival of summer heralds not only warm weather, but the busiest season for outdoor dining in Ashland.
To help locals and tourists enjoy dining alfresco, the Ashland Chamber of Commerce is compiling a list of spots all around town that offer outdoor seating. Diners can find tables in garden settings, along Ashland Creek, or next to bustling streets.
"With fine dining, pubs, coffee shops and delis, there's so much variety in outdoor dining. It's nice to help locals and visitors seek out the characteristics they're looking for," said Katharine Flanagan, director of marketing and the Visitor and Convention Bureau for the chamber.
Flanagan said the Visitor and Convention Bureau works year-round to attract culinary tourists and "geo-tourists" — people who enjoy the outdoors. Outdoor dining appeals to both groups.
Chamber staff members are still brainstorming additions to the outdoor dining list, which will be officially unveiled when the chamber premieres an updated version of its Web site at the end of August. In the meantime, Flanagan agreed to share the list-in-progress so that diners can be reminded of their favorite spots and find places they may have overlooked.
Looking for a garden setting that will give you a feeling of intimacy and seclusion?
Dragonfly Restaurant, the Peerless Restaurant, Cucina Biazzi and the Winchester Inn Restaurant and Wine Bar all offer garden seating.
If listening to the rush of Ashland Creek is more to your liking, a row of restaurants on the downtown Plaza offer creekside dining along the Calle Guanajuato, the pedestrian walkway that runs between Plaza businesses and the creek.
Munchies Restaurant, Greenleaf Restaurant, Hana Sushi, Louie's Bar & Grill and Grilla Bites open onto the creek.
Sesame Asian Kitchen has dining along the creek and in front of the restaurant on Winburn Way, facing Lithia Park. It also offers a picnic to-go option for people who want to eat in the park itself.
Alex's Plaza Restaurant & Bar has an upstairs patio with a view of the creek at the back of the restaurant, and front patio with a view of the Plaza. Loft American Brasserie & Bar also has a patio overlooking the Calle Guanajuato and the creek.
A cluster of restaurants on North Main Street and Water Street offers more dining by the creek. The restaurants include Thai Pepper, KOBE, Caldera Tap House and Creekside Pizza Bistro.
Many restaurants in Ashland have outdoor patios where you can take in the busy downtown street scene, including Martino's Restaurant & Lounge, Pasta Piatti, Standing Stone Brewing Co., Beasy's on the Creek, Blue — Greek on Granite, Starbucks, Evo's Coffee Lounge and Big Town Hero.
Outside the downtown core, Great American Pizza, Ashland Food Co-op, Miguel's Mexican Restaurant, Rogue Valley Roasting Co., The Beanery and a second Starbucks location all have patios.
For patio seating even farther off the beaten path, try Callahan's Restaurant & Lodge. Mountain views and fresh air come free with the food at this lodge, located off Exit 6 on Interstate 5 on the Siskiyou Pass south of Ashland.
European-style sidewalk seating can be found downtown at Lark's Restaurant, Zoey's Cafe & All Natural Ice Cream, Tease Restaurant, the Apple Cellar Bakery's new downtown location, Allyson's Kitchen, Geppetto's, Agave, Mix Sweet Shoppe and Water Street Café.
On A Street in the Historic Railroad District, Noble Coffee Roasting has sidewalk seating, as does Boulevard Coffee at Stratford Inn on Siskiyou Boulevard and El Tapatio Mexican Family Restaurant on Highway 99.
Anyone who would like to suggest an addition to the Ashland Chamber of Commerce's outdoor dining list can contact Katharine Flanagan at 541-482-3486 ext. 106 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Staff writer Vickie Aldous can be reached at 541-479-8199 or email@example.com.