Think about it. An outdoor dining set is like the anchor or hub of an outdoor room. You've got your burgers, marinade and some sort of grill. You can't just hand someone a meat patty and expect them to wander aimlessly through your yard. Enter the outdoor dining set. It lures you and your guests outdoors and keeps you there. If it's comfortable, well-made, and attractive, it establishes an outdoor living room. It's a place to sit, talk, relax, eat, drink, entertain and enjoy life outdoors for awhile.
We've done all the scouting: check out our top picks for outdoor patio dining sets.
CB2's Eddy bistro table is smartly designed to flip down and be stored during off season or out of the way. The Eddy outdoor table is stands strong on a cast aluminum base and features a stainless, weather-resistant table top that has been machined with a scallop-prism pattern.
Urban-oriented CB2 carries a few outdoor chairs that would be a good match for Eddy -- the lightweight yellow chairs are called Venezia and are sold separately. Another natural choice would be CB2's Rex armchair, which has been offered for at least a few years now. Why stop making something that's a winner, year after year? Chairs and Eddy the table are sold separately, allowing you to buy as few or as many as you need.
Think of CB2 as Crate and Barrel's younger, hipper, urban cousin without high-rent prices. While the Weekender modernist outdoor dining table and bench are not sold as a complete set, buying both along with a couple of CB2's swank patio chairs shoud cost around $1,000.
Both the table and bench are made of solid plantation-grown eucalyptus wood, a fast-growing and easily replenishable hardwood. Parsons-style base and slat top are finished in a minimal gray wash to bring out the grain. Left untreated, the wood will weather to a silvery gray; to maintain original finish, apply teak oil.
Table and bench sold separately. Looks good with CB2's Rex Chairs (Compare Prices)
The size and scale are excellent. Richey's American Woodies Cottage Classics dining set features a large round table and four chairs made of Southern cypress, which is resistant to decay. A UV inhibitor is used in Cuprinol, a water-based stain, to provide strong color retention and fade resistance, and all hardware is stainless steel to prevent rusting.
Leon Leonwood Bean started up his namesake company in 1912, and for nearly a century the shortened version - L.L. Bean - has been associated with fine craftsmanship. The Freeport, Maine-based company's Adirondack collection includes an outdoor bistro-style dining table and folding dining chairs sold in sets of two. Each piece is sold separately.
Furniture is made of solid maple and comes in natural finish or white or red weather-resistant paint. Hardware (nuts, bolts, etc.) are made of rust-resistant metals. Each piece folds up easily for off-season storage. Other furnishings in L.L. Bean's Adirondack collection include reclining and classic Adirondack armchairs and a side table in a variety of colors.
Gather the extended family for a backyard barbecue in style. This seven-piece patio dining set features Oxford Garden's trademark, clean classic lines with an extension -- literally.
The sturdy, oval-shaped table extends from 64 to 88 inches and is a generous 48 inches wide. Included in this set are six of Oxford Garden's comfortable Chadwick outdoor dining armchairs. Umbrella and chair cushions are sold separately.
Both table and chairs are constructed of shorea wood, which is an exotic tropical hardwood with properties similar to teak. And those are:
- Weather resistant
- Termite and insect resistant
- Wood is dense and heavy
- Has high oil content
What we like:
- The tabletop is made with glazed ceramic tile in vivid colors. Tile stays clean-looking and weathers well.
- A vintage-looking black wrought-iron frame.
- Tables are handcrafted; no two are exactly alike.
- We sat in it at our local Pier 1 and found both the chairs and table to be sturdy. Add pillows to the metal chairs to cushion your dining experience.
Each piece is sold separately.
Room & Board is a modern design-oriented store with its roots in Midcentury Modern. The retail stores can be found in hip urban locations. Their Kona outdoor dining table is made out of tubular steel with steel mesh, has a powder-coated finish and an umbrella hole. Room & Board has a few different lines of coordinating steel chairs; the ones in the photo are the Malibu.
Made in Italy. The Kona and Malibu chairs would work well on a wide, open deck or a small balcony.
Woodard has been making garden furniture for three centuries, which is amazing, to put it mildly. Torino has that trademark Woodard wrought iron and metal mesh styling and is part of the Woodard Wrought Iron Collection. In case you don't know, wrought iron is one of the most durable materials for outdoor furniture -- that's why so many vintage pieces are still around. Torino has a modern design -- the 30-inch bistro table has a wire mesh top and is sold separately. Add however many Torino chairs you need to complete your patio dining set.
I've seen vintage Woodard patio sets commanding high prices, so consider this a utilitarian purchase that may also be a future collectible. Your heirs will thank you.