Restaurants around Fort Collins have put their creativity on display this winter with outdoor dining options that are not only compliant with local regulations but also pretty darn memorable (margs in an Airstream, anyone?). The following restaurants are following safety regulations and allow guests to safely dine while supporting local business owners that need our support now more than ever.
Step 1: Bundle Up
While most if not all of these outdoor dining options have heaters and fire pits to keep you nice and toasty, it’s always fun to stock up on new cold weather layers to keep you warm all winter long. Stop into these Fort Collins businesses to score cold-weather staples.
Akinz in Old Town Square sells the coolest handmade beanies around (and free local delivery during the holidays with a minimum order of $50!).
Topo Designs offers trendy hats and beanies, warm socks and even a Puffer Parka, sure to keep you warm on the coldest Colorado day.
From stylish sweaters to down jackets, hooded vests, to furry fleece pullovers, JAX Mercantile Co. has everything you need to bundle up for dinner under the stars.
Step 2: Pick your favorite restaurant to visit.
We've put together a handful of great options below but definitely want to hear your go to location in Fort Collins. Opting for take out or delivery? Good news! The City of Fort Collins is collaborating with local food delivery company NoCo Nosh to pay the restaurant portion of the delivery fees eliminating the fees that restaurants typically pay for NoCo Nosh to take, process, and fulfill a takeout or delivery order on their platform from now until December 30, 2020. During this period, the City will also be covering the processing fee and the first $0.50 of the delivery fee charged to Fort Collins residents placing orders on the NoCo Nosh platform.
Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant (143 W. Mountain Ave.):
The original Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant located in the heart of Old Town just added a trolley car and an Airstream trailer offering folks a safe and private place to sip manberry margs and nosh on Mexican classics.
Odell Brewing Company (800 E. Lincoln Ave.)
Odell Brewing Company's awesome backyard patio, replete with heaters and fire pits, is the perfect spot to sip an Isolation Ale. While the beer was born in 1998 it’s perhaps most relevant in 2020. Score a commemorative T-shirt on top of great brews and food from onsite food trucks.
The Exchange (200 N. College Ave.)
Score everything from hot doughnuts (at Fort Collins Donut Company) and tasty street tacos (Vatos Tacos and Tequila) to ice cream (Churn) at this open-air plaza in Old Town. Don't forget a beverage — enjoy a drink from Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, or CopperMuse Distillery.
The Regional (130 S. Mason St.):
Get ready to camp out at The Regional’s campsite-themed patio complete with a private dining trailer and outdoor seating area with toasty heaters. Rather eat at home? Score three courses of comfort food for two people for just $45 and take it to go.
The Reserve by Old Elk Distillery (253 Linden St.):
Old Elk’s Cabin Fever Pop-Up kicked off in late November. Stop in for delicious hot drinks and s’mores and a fun new menu by the fire on the patio. Just don’t forget your plaid and ski gear. Limited reservations available online.
Bistro Nautile (150 W. Oak St.):
Bistro Nautile, formerly Fish, opened in 2020. You’ll find the same owners, same crew, plenty of seafood, plus French! Dine on PEI mussels, oysters on the half shelf, snow crab clusters, sea clam bisque, coq au vin and more in one of the awesome heated patio tents.
DC Oakes Brewhouse and Eatery (3581 E. Harmony Rd.):
Tuck into steaming chorizo and ale steamed mussels, curds & tots or smoked chicken wings on DC Oakes patio. Bundle up the whole fam on Tuesdays and head for the patio as kids eat free!