Friday Question of the Day – Outdoor Seating do you prefer Picnic or Private Tables?

1513 17th Street, NW

With patio season upon us and the changes made at Chez Billy – I got a simple question this week – for outdoor patios do you prefer private tables or shared benches/picnic tables? Where’s your current favorite patio? For me, maybe cause it’s the first one I truly loved, Wonderland’s patio will always be tops. Though outdoor seating facing a river is gonna be tough to beat…

42 Comment

  • Im not sure if the pics related but I ate at dukes for the first time recently and wanted to know if the servers are always that laid back. Not to say I had a bad experience (quite the contrary) but I thought someone from another bench was just striking up a conversation before he asked if we wanted drinks. Maybe the fact he was talking at such a low volume added to this but just wanted to hear a second opinion

    • Yea, that is Duke’s which seems to have switched from private to picnic tables likely to get in more people. Yes, servers are always that laid back. I say the service can suck at times, but I go there for the food and to hang with friends.

    • I prefer that my servers are constantly on edge. I know what I want and I want it now!

  • Contextual

    If I’m with my (now) fiance (yay!) and it’s date night: private table.

    If I’m with my buddies, we are getting beers (i.e. Dacha), and its fun to meet folks, picnic table.

    So really quite contextual.

    Favorite patio — Veranda, before it turned terrible.

  • The people waiting around for a table, or dining inside when they’d rather dine outside, might prefer shared tables.

  • It depends because sometimes me and my friends get into some discussions that I’m not sure we wouldn’t if others where at the same table. If I’m just stopping in casually for a quick drink with one or two others I wouldn’t mind picnic style, but if I’m going to be there for a long time probably prefer private table.

    • You do realize private tables don’t come with personal sound barriers? The surrounding tables can still hear your conversation, and you can always turn your back to others sharing a picnic table.

  • Generally I prefer private tables. If the place is billed as a beer garden then I expect communal/picnic tables, but for the most part prefer private tables.

  • I generally prefer private tables, but I’ve done picnic too, and it wasn’t bad. I’m not a huge fan of eating outside, so having my own space is preferable.

  • Both; a mix. It depends on how large of a group I’m with. This is a false dichotomy.

  • I don’t mind picnic tables in a casual setting. I do get annoyed when 2-3 people sit at a table that should accommodate 6-8 and spread out so much than no one else can sit there.

  • Either really…. My favorite place with a patio is DC Reynolds (which is, really, my favorite place in general), and that’s communal or the bar. If I was out with my SO, then maybe private tables, but we tend to sit at the bar anyway.

  • I usually prefer private tables, especially if I’m going out for more than drinks. I really hate the communal tables trend for dinners. This being said if the outside areas is intended for casual drinks then shared tables maximize space well, allow for larger groups and occasionally can lead to a nice conversation with strangers.

  • It depends. When i have my obnoxious, snot faced toddler and need to aggressively breast feed, I prefer a picnic style table because it’s then easier to change his diaper.
    Otherwise, I just stay home because F it.
    I prefer whatever type of table outside that discourages people from standing over you to try to get you to hurry up

  • My only issue with the communal tables is that they usually lack a seatback. When I’m outside drinking and taking in some nice weather, I like to lean back and maybe throw one arm over the seatback.

  • Definitely private tables – dislike communal dining spaces

  • When I’m dining out, especially with companions, I don’t want to feel like I’m at my high school’s cafeteria. They take up more space than private tables and can make a server’s job more difficult if there are multiple tabs on a table.

  • I Dont Get It

    I’m not a big fan of eating outside period so I eat inside at restaurants. Outside is too hot, too humid, too cold, too much sun, too buggy, etc. Oh who am I kidding, I rarely leave my house to begin with.

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