Outside Eatin'

Summertime is the time to be outside, and what better way to soak up some warm sunshine than at one of our fine selection of outdoor eateries? With nearly a dozen open-air choices, you're sure to find one with that magic combination of food, atmosphere, and service that'll keep you coming back, day after glorious summer day.

After 5:00 pm, a favorite for many is the Crystal Rooftop, renownedfor burgers, beers, and sunsets. With a view of the Bridger Mountain Range, the Rooftop is conveniently located on Main Street above the Crystal Bar.

When it's barbeque your belly's aching for, then head down to Main Street and Church, where you'll find The Garage. The umbrella-adorned patio is always good for people-watching while you wait for your meal. The menu, which covers a wide variety of food from pasta to ribs to grilled salmon, is never a disappointment. To add summertime flavor, try cooking up your own s'mores over an open fire pit.

On the other side of town, there's The Bay with a covered patio. It's located at the mall, so for those shop-a-holics out there, this would be the place for a quick bite to eat. Not far fromthe mall is Sourdough Creek Cafe, located on College, which has a small open patio serving regional American cuisine.

If you desire a wrap of sorts, then La Parilla on Babcock is the place to go, where you have a choice between eating on the porch or at the picnic area on the lawn.

We have a few restaurants with enclosed patios that are somewhat secluded. Santa Fe red's patio is surrounded with trees and flowering plants and the sounds of trickling water from a nearby waterwheel. It feels like Mexico after a few margaritas and your favorite Mexican entree. Santa Fe Red's is located on North 7th across from K-Mart.

Back over to West Main Street is Cafe Zydeco, where you'll find Cajun delights and a semi-enclosed patio protected by a barrier of bushes. It feelsmore like a garden den and while you geast on a shrimp po-boy or some rice and beans-- with zydeco music grooving in the air-- you're sure to feel a spice of New Orleans right here in the mountains.

The Co-Op offeres a refreshing lunch from the deli, where you can build your own sandwich and salad or enjoy dipping into a healthy cup of soup. A view of the Bridgers is offered upstairs on the outdoor balcony, or you might enjoysitting under the trees in the picnic table area.

Located inside our tallest building, the Baxter Hotel, is the Savory Olive, yet another enclosed patio, sealed off from the street by a wall of shrubbery along the backside of the building. Although it is fine dining, with entrees of pan-seared halibut and white-wine-braised chicken, the Savory Olive proves to have a great atmosphere for lunch as well as being cozy and intimate for dinner.

One of my favorite ways to spend Saturday and Sunday mornings ishaving brunch on the lawn at Cafe International. Situatedon the south side of the Emerson Cultural Center, the Cafe International brunch is served from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. The entrees are amazing with a sort of-- you guessed it-- international flair. It's an almost surreal experience: sipping on mimosas, feeling the sunshine, and listening to instrumental music swirling in the air. Not a bad way to start or end a weekend.

Last but certainly not least is our beloved queen, Dairy Queen, where your only option is to eat outside. Some of the best times of summer are sucking face with a vanilla ice cream come or enjoying a hamburger after a Madison float, the stock-car races, or after winning a little-league baseball game.

Whatever you fancy this summer, Bozeman has a little bit of everything to help you enjoy dining and socializing outside, during Montana's beautiful summer days and nights.