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The Going-Out Throw Is the G.O.T. of 2020

For comfortable outdoor dining this fall and winter, you’ll need a blanket 

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three blankets
Monica Burton is the deputy editor of

On September 30, New York City gave restaurants the go-ahead to serve customers indoors, joining a growing list of U.S. cities making such allowances as winter looms. But, despite the legality of indoor service, not every restaurant or diner will feel comfortable making the leap from restaurant patios and backyards to enclosed dining rooms — whether for ethical reasons or the stark realities of the coming cold.

It stands to reason that many of us will feel safer eating outside for as long as possible. As it gets colder, we will naturally need to prepare for dropping temperatures. Sure, we’ll all bring out winter coats as it becomes necessary, but eating dinner in a parka detracts from the air of convivial comfort we usually seek when going out to a restaurant. Enter: throw blankets.

It’s easy to imagine a world in which the priciest outdoor dining experiences include wool throws in the same way that restaurants used to offer matchbooks. But for everyday eating at most restaurants, it’s forward thinking to invest in a going-out throw of your own. I’m predicting it now: This fall and winter, a blanket draped casually over one’s shoulders or tucked underneath a restaurant napkin will become the most eye-catching aspects of our looks as we quickly eat skillfully prepared restaurant meals before wind chill renders them inedible. What I’m saying is, like it or not, the going-out throw is the G.O.T. of 2020.

Here are some options to get you on board.

A woman wraps a green and blue blanket with eye motif around her body

Nazar Eye Blanket Wrap

  • $120

Prices taken at time of publishing.

Superstitchous makes some beautiful blankets with food motifs, but for a restaurant outing, that might be overkill. Instead, opt for this striking blanket wrap, which has the added benefit of a smaller size that’s actually designed to be worn out and about.

Nordic Knots El Rey Wool Blanket

  • $195

Prices taken at time of publishing.

As depicted in the product images on the product page, this blanket looks best draped over one’s shoulders. I’d recommend wearing the red side down, at least for those of us who are prone to dropping food as it makes its way to our mouths.

Ezcaray Matisse Throw

  • $325

Prices taken at time of publishing.

This mohair throw, from Spanish textile house Ezcaray, will require its own tote to bring to dinner, but there’s no way you’ll be too cold to sit outside. If this seems like too much blanket, you may want to consider Ezcaray’s more portable scarves.

A navy blue throw blanket

West Elm Crinkle Throw

  • $36
  • $45
  • 20% off

Prices taken at time of publishing.

This acrylic option from West Elm won’t look any worse for wear after being stuffed in a bag and carted to brunch. It’s on sale now, along with several other blankets that would also make for good outdoor dining accessories.