Best Patio Bar Sets

Updated December 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

30 Models Considered
6 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
270 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best patio bar sets

Last Updated December 2019

Patio bar sets are ideal for al fresco hangouts, providing a place to eat, drink, and relax with friends and family outside. Backyard tiki hut bar sets made of bamboo and thatch still exist in all their vintage glory. Or you can select an all-weather wicker set that looks like it fell out of the pages of an island resort brochure.

The two main types of patio bar sets are high-top tables paired with bar stools or traditional table and chair sets that are rugged enough to withstand the outdoor elements. There are a number of considerations when shopping for patio bar sets, including materials, size, and assembly, not to mention whether or not you’d like an umbrella.

Our buying guide has everything you need to know when choosing a patio bar set for your outdoor space, including how much you should pay. For our five favorite bar sets on the market, see the matrix above.

Make a splash at your next outdoor party by serving inventive, colorful cocktails in equally bold glassware, complete with neon straws, lots of crushed ice, and edible flowers as flourishes.

Key considerations

Size

Most patio bar sets come as three-piece sets that include a table and two stools. That size is perfect for small patios, balconies, and decks. Larger sets may come with four or six stools or chairs. With larger tables and more seating, the table may not have shelving to store items as the middle portion is used for legroom and to house the stools or chairs when not in use.

Materials

Just like other outdoor furniture, patio bar sets come in various materials. However, the bulk of the offerings are designed with all-weather resin wicker. This material is affordable, in demand, and easy to maintain. You’ll also find teak, aluminum, and stone patio bar sets at higher price points.

Assembly

Most patio bar sets come unassembled. Though it may seem like an easy assembly job, there are plenty of holes that need lining up and screws that need tightening so that the whole set comes together and is even and sturdy. Power tools will make assembly easier, and you may want to hire someone to do it for you.

EXPERT TIP

Outdoor bar stools are typically rated to hold about 250 to 300 pounds. Check the weight capacity for any patio bar set you consider.


Staff  | BestReviews

Features

Glass bar top

If you’re considering an all-weather resin wicker patio bar set, note that the top of the bar will be textured because of the wicker weave. A number of sets come with tempered glass bar tops instead. Some are clear, and others are smoked or tinted black. If you’re contemplating a patio bar set without a glass topper, just add a decorative tray and coasters so glasses and other items sit flat.

Cushions

Some patio bar sets come with stool cushions, others don’t, but cushions are readily available to purchase separately. It’s rare to find bar stools or bar chairs that are comfortable without a cushion, but it’s possible. For those stools and chairs that need a bit of cushioning, always remember that the cushion adds a couple inches of height. Look for patio bar sets with cushions made with Sunbrella or solution-dyed acrylic outdoor fabric covers because they won’t fade as fast in the sun. Most cushions strap onto the stool or chair so they don’t fall off.

Shelves

Some patio bar set tables have shelves to hold barware and bottles. Shelves may be made from steel or heavy-duty plastic. They’re also likely non-adjustable and non-removable. Tables may have one or more shelves. Note how much weight each surface can hold. Bottles can weigh quite a bit, so look for a durable bottom shelf.

DID YOU KNOW?

Elevated bar stools are conducive to conversation. The higher up you sit, the more likely you’ll be to lean into others around a patio bar set’s table.

Accessories

Adjustable patio umbrellas: Best Choice Products 10-Foot Offset Hanging Market Patio Umbrella
Patio bar sets typically don’t have a hole for an umbrella, but an adjustable patio umbrella offers plenty of shade. This Best Choice Products market umbrella is easy to adjust and comes in six outdoor-friendly shades, from neutral beige to bright blue.

Weatherproof covers: Classic Accessories Veranda Patio Bar Set Cover
A fitted cover will keep your patio bar set in good shape during the colder months. We like this waterproof cover by Classic Accessories, which works with most patio bar sets and has a drawstring hem for a secure fit.

Cushions: Sweet Home Collection Memory Foam Honeycomb Non-Slip Seat Cushions
Not every patio bar set comes with cushions for the stools or chairs, but you’ll want them for hours of comfort outside. These Sweet Home Collection cushions come in multipacks in a wide range of colors and offer a soft memory foam surface and non-slip backing.

Patio bar set prices

In the $150 to $275 range, you’ll find the bulk of three-piece patio bar sets in all-weather resin. The sets in this range may be bistro pub tables with built-in ice buckets or semi-enclosed tables with storage shelving.

From $300 to $550, you’ll find larger all-weather resin sets that come with four or six chairs or stools. In this price range, there are a number of high-top tables with two to four chairs in all-weather resin wicker, wood, or metal. You’ll find a few acacia wood patio bar sets as well.

For around $1,500, you’ll find powder-coated aluminum patio bar sets in antiqued bronze with four padded swivel chairs or stools. Jump up to $4,000 and beyond, and you’ll find premium teak and metal patio bar sets with six or more swivel chairs or stools.

EXPERT TIP

If you have an above-ground pool, push a tall patio bar set against the outside of the pool to create a tropical swim-up bar. That way swimmers can enjoy a cool drink with those sitting on the bar stools.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • Breakable glassware is never a good idea for outdoor use. If plastic barware isn’t your style, consider copper mugs, also known as Moscow Mule mugs. Copper mugs are durable, and they keep drinks at an optimal chilled temperature, which is especially helpful in the summer. You can enjoy any beverage in a copper mug, but if you’re interested, the classic recipe for a Moscow Mule is a mix of 2 ounces of vodka, 4 ounces of ginger beer, plus a squeeze of fresh lime juice, served over ice.
  • Don’t let bugs prevent you from enjoying your outdoor patio bar set. Use citronella candles or essential oils to shoo them away. Citronella candles will give your bar set a welcoming glow at night. Mosquitoes and gnats also hate the smell of lavender. Place some lavender buds in a vase, spray lavender essential oil over your bar set, or put drops of lavender oil in a mason jar of water as a centerpiece. Add a floating citronella candle for a double-whammy bug control solution.
  • Keep your patio bar set from tipping over on windy days. If your bar is fully exposed to the elements, you may need to do a little fine tuning to secure your bar so it doesn’t go sailing into your pool or neighbor’s backyard. There’s an array of outdoor furniture weights and anchors you can use on any type of ground. Outdoor bag weights, for example, can be filled with sand and attached to furniture legs. There are also anchor kits for furniture on decks, and eye-bolt kits to attach bar sets to concrete floors.

Other products we considered

Even the smallest of decks and balconies can have a functional patio bar set, which is why we love the HL Patio Outdoor 3-Piece Wicker Bistro Bar Set. The all-weather wicker table is outfitted with a tempered glass top and an ice bucket to chill bottles of wine or beer. The two chairs have arms and high backs and also come with seat cushions. Wood bar sets are less common because they are heavier and tougher to move. But many people love the look of wood, like this beautiful, sophisticated, and durable Christopher Knight Home Catrina 3-Piece Mahogany Stained Wood Stool Bar Set. This patio bar set of acacia wood stained a mahogany tone comes with two traditional bar stools with footrests for easy sitting. The bar table has two shelves for ample storage. Acacia wood resembles teak in its density and durability, and it’s also a sustainable and affordable wood.

If you’re considering a pub-style patio bar set, look for one where the chairs easily tuck under the table so they don’t blow away or tip over in windy weather.

FAQ

Q. Can I leave bar supplies inside my patio bar set?
A.
You probably won’t want to haul all your supplies and barware back and forth from inside the house to your outdoor bar. If you have a patio bar set with shelving, you can store items outside. For outdoor storage, consider using stackable airtight plastic storage containers and durable plastic baggies. You can always leave plastic glassware, plates, bowls, cutlery, and other serving items outside in your bar. For safety reasons, you’ll likely want to take in liquor bottles and anything edible to avoid attracting wildlife and curious merrymakers who may sniff out your supplies. Or you could invest in a lockable weather-safe cabinet to place next to your bar set for storing items you don’t want to lug back indoors.

 

Q. What’s the difference between bar-height chairs and counter-height chairs?
A.
Patio bar set chairs and stools come in three heights: dining height, counter height, and bar height. Dining tables range between 28 and 30 inches tall. Dining chairs have a standard height of 18 to 20 inches from ground to seat. Pub tables, also called counter-height tables, are typically 34 to 36 inches tall. Counter-height chairs that measure between 24 and 28 inches from floor to seat pair best with pub tables. Bar tables run about 40 to 42 inches tall. Bar-height chairs measure 28 to 30 inches from ground to seat. Extra-tall bar stools are 34 inches from floor to seat.

 

Q. How do I choose a style of patio bar set for my outdoor space?
A.
When you select a patio bar set style, consider your surroundings, your house’s architectural style, and also the style of your other patio furnishings. If you’re buying a bar set for a beach house or bungalow, you might want an Adirondack-style wood bar set. If you have a traditional home nestled in a woodland setting, teak, wrought-iron, or brown-toned all-weather wicker sets will fit in perfectly. A contemporary house looks at home with a sleek, streamlined powder-coated aluminum patio bar set, which can be softened by colorful stool cushions.

The team that worked on this review
  • Katherine
    Katherine
    Editor
  • Marilyn
    Marilyn
    Writer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Rich
    Rich
    Writer

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