Lakeside Breezes & Brews on Garland Patios

Take the Bass Pro exit off of I 30 and discover an oasis of restaurants offering lakeside patio dining. The 5 patios to be enjoyed can be found at Hooters, The Flying Saucer, Primo’s, Texas Land & Cattle and Islamorada Fish Company.

The largest patio of the bunch can be found at Hooters, with an outdoor sports bar and patio tables and chairs bordering the rail,looking out to the lake. The most popular food items being served here are wings and burgers. Lively atmosphere and great service.

The Flying Saucer is a great stop for craft beer enthusiasts, with a list of over 200 brews to enjoy. This patio is multilevel and shaded. There’s music and ceiling fans on this patio, creating a comfortable environment, conducive to relaxing and enjoying food and drink. Reading the list of brews being offered, one gets the impression that there’s a contest to see who can come up with the craziest name for their beer or ale. My personal favorite was Moose Drool, though I declined a taste,because the name conjured up such a distasteful image. However, their white wine suited me just fine. This patio has a family atmosphere, with lots of kids watching the boats out on the water.

The patio at Primo’s TexMex restaurant offers a more adult atmosphere, where one can get the feeling that they’re actually on the water, as refreshing breezes waft over the waves. This outdoor experience is just a bit more sedate than Hooters and The Flying Saucer, with fewer children and fewer seating options. Crumbs from tortilla chips occasionally hit the deck, and become food for the many birds that hang around to assist with housekeeping. The food here is very good and there are $3.00 margaritas offered during happy hour, which lasts from 3 until 7pm. On weekends patio patrons can watch the boat traffic, with small power boats drifting in and out of the boat slips that run along the the shore.

The patio at Texas Land & Cattle seems to be the smallest in area, of the 5 findin patios offered at harbor Point. Unlike the others, this one features an upholstered conversational grouping , as well as the high tables and chairs along the rail, looking out over Lake Ray Hubbard. The nature of their menu, which can be a bit more expensive than the three mentioned above, tends to attract a more formal crowd, but the lakeside environment can be as casual as one wishes, particularly on weekends.

Our 5th patio is the Islamorada Fish Company at Bass Pro. The Islamorada area in the Florida Keys was Jimmy Buffet’s inspiration for “Margaritaville”. Just to set the scene, Bass Pro has created a strip of sandy beach with palm trees just outside the patio area. This patio is large and completely screened in. The menu consists primarily of fish and seafood dishes, but their are other items, as well. This patio does not overlook the lake, but is just a stone’s throw from the water’s edge. This outdoor dining facility attracts birthday parties and other special events. It can be entered by going through and down the stairs of the Bass Pro store, or by just following the paved walkway from the parking lot. The huge aquarium inside the lovely restaurant further lends itself to the nautical theme.

The Holiday Inn at Harbor Pointe also has a patio that’s available for rental. Private parties are invited to reserve the swimming pool area. The inn does not have food service facilities, but with all the restaurants close by, catering should not be a problem. Overnight guests can enjoy rooms with lake views and a very attractive internet lounge in the lobby.

Nancy Ghirla