It's summertime and nothing could be better than dining outside at a great restaurant. The Tristate offers great, affordable food served in exceptional outside spaces. Here are a few to try this summer:

Cabana on the River (7445 Forbes Road): This Westside hotspot offers a tropical assortment of food, drinks and a friendly atmosphere. Cabana provides one of the best views of the Ohio River that might just make you think you're in the tropics. Meals are reasonably priced (nothing over $13.95). Stick around after dinner for the Tristate's best Long Island iced tea at the authentic tiki bar. Live music every weekend. For more information, call (513) 941-7442 or visit

The oldest bar in Cincinnati, Arnold's Bar and Grill (210 E. Eighth St., downtown) has a rich history and culture. Opened in 1861, this local favorite has kept its signature look and many of its original dishes. From pasta to burritos, Arnold's has the perfect menu when everyone wants something different. The outdoor courtyard is spacious and features live music Thursday through Saturday. Be sure to grab a drink and stick around to hear the band play into the evening. For more information, call (513) 421-6234 or visit

Arthur's Café (3516 Edwards Road): Nestled in Hyde Park, Arthur's has affordable food and an intimate outdoor patio. Enjoy traditional American food ranging from loaded cheese fries to signature sandwiches, but most importantly, specialty hamburgers. Head to Arthur's Sunday to Tuesday for "Burger Madness" "” unlimited toppings on your burger are only $6. The cozy outdoor courtyard is a great place to spend time with family and friends this summer. For more information, call (513) 871-5543.

One of the newest additions to Newport on the Levee, Brother's Bar and Grill (1 Levee Way, Suite 2126) offers a fun, family-friendly atmosphere. Food and drink specials are offered daily with a half price happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m. If you're not at the ballpark this summer, Brother's is a great place to watch the Reds in HD. Savor specialties on the "from scratch" menu with a great view of downtown on the outdoor patio. For more information, call (859) 291-2767 or visit

Hofbräuhaus (200 E. Third St., Newport): Casual German dining for the whole family. Experience German specialties including the Hofbräuhaus Würstlplatte for $13.49 or the schnitzel sandwich for $8.99. Make sure to try the German bier "” it makes this place famous. All biers are brewed on site and served in large, German-style mugs. The outdoor biergarden is spacious and is a great place for large gatherings in the summer. For more information, call (859) 491-7200 or visit

And if you're looking for a real deal, check out the Greater Cincinnati Independents. This community of independently owned and operated restaurants encourages eating locally by offering group and discounted gift certificates. Certificates are available online and are great for gift giving because they can be used at any of the 39 participating restaurants, including those with outdoor spaces including TRIO, The Polo Grille, 20 Brix and Dilly Deli. Discounts for bulk purchases make gift certificates a great idea for all of your gift giving needs. For more information, visit