On the Patio

Only a few years ago, Los Angeles dining was an indoor event--usually in a dark, refrigerated room that invariably made you forget whether it was day or night, summer or winter. Jackets or sweaters were always in order, especially if you sat under the vents.

Oh, there were a few so-called outdoor cafes. Ma Maison, with the artificial-grass floor and the roll-away sunroof, for example.

And later, the Bistro Garden.

But these were not ordinary people's places; they didn't remind you of the great sidewalk cafes of some of the oldest cities in the world.

And nobody, in those bad old days, ever called Los Angeles a capital of fine cuisine--or fashion.

Times have changed. And so have local dining habits--and what we wear to dine. The outdoor cafe has arrived in Los Angeles--and everybody loves it.

Here are a few candid shots taken around town as warm-weather snackers surface.

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