When the mercury rises, many Fort Wayne establishments become favorites for summer recreation and thrill. The summer season brings extra time for brunch, outdoor dining, and decorative drinks.

I can imagine that everyone has their “summer spot” somewhere in the Summit City, but it doesn’t hurt to explore a little more.

I bring you some of the best summer restaurants in the Fort Wayne, Indiana area. Don’t forget your sandals and sunglasses. It’s going to be spectacular.


The Best Outdoor Dining


Hoppy Gnome

Located in the heart of downtown Fort Wayne, and among all the activity, the Hoppy Gnome just fits in line with the perfect mood of summer. Take in a downtown festival downtown and don’t forget to stop by Hoppy Gnome.

Whether it’s for brunch on the patio that sits at a vibrant street corner or maybe a tasty brew from GnomeTown Brewing. The atmosphere is totally upbeat and the perfect stop for someone who might be going to and leaving a special event outdoors in downtown Fort Wayne.

203 E. Berry St. | 260.422.0070

Friends enjoying drinks at the Sidecar tiki bar at Copper Spoon in downtown Fort Wayne

Copper Spoon and The Sidecar

Enjoy an evening of outdoor dining at Copper Spoon, or enjoy the tropical flavors at the outdoor bar, The Sidecar.

An outdoor-centric way of enjoying a good drink has been redefined by Sidecar. Its boxcar experience gives for a casual, energetic method of enjoying your favorite cocktails.

When the summer season hits, it’s time for you to enjoy a good drink at the stellar tiki bar, Sidecar. Also, don’t forget that you’re literally next to Parkview Field, meaning you can sit on this patio and take in the TinCaps Baseball experience complete with some post-game fireworks in the summer.

301 W. Jefferson Blvd. | 260.755.1019

The Deck at the Gas House

A Fort Wayne favorite. The Deck has grown to be the place to be in Fort Wayne during the warmer months.

Situated right on the banks of the St. Marys River, The Deck is completely outdoors. Saddle up to the main bar or put your name in for a spot in the general table seating area - we recommend the Tots Deluxe. Take a bike ride along Fort Wayne's river, and make The Deck your final destination, and don't forget to order a Purple Haze (it's a cocktail that everyone loves to enjoy on a warm summer evening!)

The drinks are strong (and tasty) and the people are friendly at The Deck, and it is one of the best places to meet up with your friends or family.

305 E. Superior St. | 260.426.3411


You can really take in the downtown Fort Wayne urban scene by visiting Proximo. This restaurant faces both the busy Wayne and Harrison St., offering the perfect spot for some summertime people-watching. Grab a seat in the light-filled indoor dining room, or take the fun outdoors to their two outdoor dining areas. A good cocktail and tasty brunch make for a perfect afternoon or evening at Proximo.

898 S. Harrison St. | 260.459.6150

Mother and Day Eating on the Porch off Calhoun

Porch Off Calhoun

Don't forget to take advantage of all the great outdoor tables and seating for public use around downtown! Slide into a picnic table or high-top table at the Porch Off Calhoun, an award-winning public space in the large alley next to 816 Pint & Slice and Dash-In. For those cooler days and evenings, you can also turn on one of the heaters if available. Don't forget to look up and check out the large murals and public art in the alley! You can find more public use tables and seating in the alleys connecting to the Porch Off Calhoun.

Outdoor Dining in Fort Wayne, Indiana

Group of college age friends enjoying Pad Thai outside Nawa restaurant in Fort Wayne.

From June to August, grab your lunch at Lunch on the Square every Thursday! Fort Wayne's food trucks gather in Freimann Square and it is the perfect area for lunch on the go or a fun picnic lunch with the family.

There are many options to explore in Fort Wayne, so give it a shot and try one or all of them!

Taking the furry friend out for a nice day and want to experience places together? Take a look at these dog-friendly restaurants!

This post was originally published in June 2019 and has been updated. Last updated: March 2024