PUBLISHED: 11:58 26 November 2010 | UPDATED: 15:18 20 February 2013
Discover 10 top destinations for enjoying the delights of al fresco dining
The Pheasant at Gestingthorpe
Church Street, Gestingthorpe C09 3AU
THIS is your chance to dine in an award-winning garden. Chef/proprietor James Donoghue has installed his Chelsea Flower Show Bronze medal-winning garden at The Pheasant. The garden is a must for anyone wishing to dine outside this summer, with a superb view of the surrounding countryside. Dine here and you automatically feel at ease and can relax and enjoy the delicious food on offer.
Stratford Road, Dedham, Colchester CO7 6HW
Set in a stunning two-acre garden, Milsoms has a huge sail that covers the entire terrace making dining al fresco a reality whatever the weather. Using local produce when in season, you will also find a tempting array of specials.
The Peldon Rose
Colchester Road, Colchester CO5 7QJ
The garden at the Peldon Rose is perfect for summer dining. Spacious and sunny with a lovely pond, it is surrounded by trees giving it a private feel. Ideal for enjoying homemade food made from the freshest produce.
The Thatchers Arms
Mount Bures CO8 5AT
The Thatcher's Arms is a country pub set on top of the rolling hills of the Colne and Stour Valleys. Food is locally sourced and freshly cooked and can be enjoyed inside or out in the large garden which boasts stunning views over meadows and fields. Bookings are definitely advised.
The Coast Inn
108 Coast Road, Mersea Island, Colchester CO5 8NA
The Coast Inn on the River Blackwater offers morning coffee, lunch, afternoon tea or dinner in its garden overlooking the coast. You'll also see some stunning sunsets.
The Victory at Mersea
92 Coast Road, West Mersea, Colchester CO5 8LS
Visit The Victory and discover the best in casual dining in the bar, restaurant or garden, all with fantastic views over the Blackwater estuary. While adults relax in the garden, children can enjoy the play area.
30-32 Broomfield Road, Chelmsford CM1 1SW
This restaurant has proved a big hit in Chelmsford. Barda has a decked patio area, so during the summer months you can sit outside and enjoy the glories of the British summer, as well as the tempting fixed price or a la carte menus.
15 Brook Street, Manningtree CO11 1DJ
Situated in Constable Country, the Swan Inn is the perfect place for walkers to rest and relax in the elegant garden. Enjoy the freshly-prepared food while enjoying the sea breeze from Mistley Quays and a crisp glass of wine.
Stock Road, Stock CM4 9BD
The Hoop is a freehouse which dates back 450 years. It is perfect for outdoor dining on warm summer days with a beautiful garden that contains not only a 30ft combined barbecue and hog roast, but also a garden bar.
The Bear Stock
The Square, Stock CM4 9LH
This 15th century coach inn has a wonderfully spacious beer garden with a lovely duck pond. With barbeques planned throughout the summer, tuna, swordfish, and award-winning beef burgers will be on the menu under the heated canopy. What could be better on a lazy summer evening?