It's almost undeniable that Cafeteria has the sweetest patio amenities on Newbury Street — and not just because it's bigger than Stephanie's by 10 seats. The Cafeteria exterior is perfectly equipped for fine-weather people-watching, with ideal natural shade to block rays, and heat lamps for those stiff-nipple evenings. It's a good thing, too; the Euro-suave cats who frequent this place don't appreciate the elements denting their immaculate coifs.

A few blocks away and up one flight of stairs, the roof deck at the Rattlesnake is as far from hair gel as Back Bay gets. With a perfect mix of open sky and building shade — and delicious, affordable grub — the Rattlesnake is favored by everyone from businessmen to frat boys. It's also one of the few patios in town with its own bar. Customers queued to get upstairs even before phenom chef Brian Poe commandeered the kitchen in 2009. Now the lines are even longer, and they're even more worth waiting on.

RATTLESNAKE, 384 Boylston St, Boston | 617.859.8555

CAFETERIA, 279A Newbury St, Boston | 617.536.2233

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