Tamarind Hill

The buzz: This Thai establishment opened a month and a half ago at Labrador Park care of the Samadhi Retreats group, which also runs Eco Gourmet Café just down the road.

The vibe: It feels just like a tropical resort. Located in a historic colonial building, the place is outfitted with Asian-inspired elements such as golden Buddha statues, swatches of fabric with ethnic embroidery, and dark wooden furnishings. The staff is even dressed in chic sarongs and chunky jewelry.

The food: Sophisticated contemporary Thai plates thanks to Thai-Canadian chef Thiti Thammanatr who has cooked for newsmakers like Bill Clinton and Chow Yun Fat. Expect starters such as an experimental tom yum martini ($12)—a non-boozy option for chilled soup fans—as well as refined mains like grilled Wagyu sirloin and foie gras accompanied by a green curry reduction ($45) and deep-fried lobster with tamarind sauce ($17).

The drinks: There’s a decent selection of wines to choose from— six reds, six whites, one port and one bubbly—available by the glass (from $13) and by the bottle (from $58). Plus, you also get a non- alcoholic welcome sip upon arrival featuring Southeast Asian flavors like lemongrass or tamarind.

Why you’ll be back: Great for an intimate gathering with friends or a romantic night out with your other half, as this beautiful restaurant makes you feel like you’re on vacation. 

When the weather is good, eating outside can be a truly enjoyable dining experience. These joints with charming open air areas are just the place to dine on breezy evenings.