Al fresco dining

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Al fresco dining
Restaurant in New York City during COVID-19 emergency rules

Al fresco dining or dining alfresco is eating outside.

In temperate climates, al fresco dining is especially popular in the summer months when temperatures and weather are most favorable. It is a style of dining that is casual and often party-like in its atmosphere.[1]

In order to promote and accommodate the pedestrian activity and vibrancy associated with al fresco dining, some communities have passed ordinances permitting it at restaurants, including the service of food and alcoholic beverages to customers at pavement tables, until late at night.[2]


The phrase al fresco is borrowed from Italian for "in the cool [air]", although it is not in current use in that language to refer to dining outside. Instead, Italians use the phrases fuori ("outside", "outdoor") or all'aperto ("in the open [air]").[3] In Italian, the expression al fresco usually refers to spending time in jail.[4]

COVID-19 Pandemic[edit]

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many cities, especially in high-density areas such as New York City, have encouraged restaurants to offer al fresco dining in order to promote open space, encourage social distancing, and help businesses economically recover from the pandemic's impact.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Stewart, Martha (June 26, 2009). "Dining Alfresco". NY Daily News. Retrieved June 27, 2017.
  2. ^ "Upstate City Ok's Alfresco Dining". WYFF Channel 4. Internet Broadcasting Systems. June 15, 2009. Archived from the original on July 21, 2009. Retrieved June 27, 2017.
  3. ^ Preble, Keith (July 1, 2014). "Word of the Day: stare al fresco". Parola del Giorno. Retrieved June 27, 2017.
  4. ^ "Dizionario dei modi di dire" (in Italian). Fresco. Archived from the original on August 4, 2016. Retrieved June 27, 2017.
  5. ^ "Open Restaurants". Retrieved 2020-09-06.