• City Eating

    A Family-Friendly Restaurant Guide

    By Brittany McNamara

    Looking to grab a bite to eat, but not sure where to take the kids? Here are 26 great restaurants located throughout Manhattan that both you and your child will love:

    A Salt and Battery: The winner of an episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay, this eatery is home to some of the best fish and chips in the city.  No trans-fats are used in their frying process.  There’s not much seating inside, so pick a day you won’t mind sitting outside or go during quieter hours. 112 Greenwich Avenue, (212) 691-2713, asaltandbattery.com.

    Alice’s Tea Cup: A great place to bring your little girl for the magical tea party she always wanted.  The list of tea available is quite extensive.  Fairy dust is sprinkled on young guests and fairy wings are provided as well.  There are three different cafes, check their websites for the other two locations.  Various locations, alicesteacup.com.

    Benihana: This action-packed Japanese dining experience includes a children’s menu to satisfy even the pickiest of eaters—with some knife juggling and balls of fire on the side! Hibachi grillers entertain kids with ninja-like reflexes while you watch in wonder as they eat their vegetables, for once, without protest. Truly a meal to make everyone in the family smile! 47 West 56th Street, 212-581-0930, benihana.com.

    Brasserie Julien: For a taste of Paris without leaving the city head to Brasserie Julien.  Kids eat free Monday through Thursday before 7 p.m.  There is also live music Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings.  1422 Third Avenue, (212) 744-6327, brasseriejulien.com.

    Bubby’s Pie Co.: Opening originally as a pie company, Bubby’s now serves up some great family inspired recipes.  Every meal comes with a homemade biscuit and they make their own soda pop from scratch. 120 Hudson Street, (212) 219-0666, bubbys.com.

    Calle Ocho: If you like Latin food you will love Calle Ocho.  There is no kid’s menu, but if you ask, the waiter will offer options your child may enjoy. The restaurant uses paper table cloths, so bring crayons for you child to draw with in case the restaurant runs out. 446 Columbus Avenue, (212) 223-6432, calleochonyc.com.

    Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop: There’s a lot of history at Eisenberg’s since it began in 1929.  Check out the photographs on the wall of all the celebrities that have visited the shop. Try the pastrami sandwich or an egg cream. 174 5th Avenue, (212) 675-5096, eisenbergsnyc.com.

    Empanada Mama: This is a great place to stop for a light meal.  Most of the empanadas are from $2-$3, so it won’t break your wallet.  The filling options are endless and likely to satisfy any child.  763 9th Avenue, (212) 698-9008, empmamanyc.com.

    Kefi: This Greek menu is inspired by the Chef’s own childhood. There is a children’s menu, and it can get pretty loud so it’s a good place to bring noisy children.  The restaurant was also voted New York’s Best Meatballs by New York Magazine in 2007. 505 Columbus Avenue, (212) 873-0200, kefirestaurant.com.

    Kelley and Ping: Stop in to this cafeteria style noodle house for a quick meal.  Items on the children’s menu have very creative names, and usually come with instructions on how to use chopsticks.  There are plenty of high chairs to go around, and it’s not a problem if your children become noisy. 127 Green Street, (212) 228-1212, kelleyandping.com.

    Landmarc: With a children’s menu consisting of 18-items, there is bound to be something here to please your child.  For adults the restaurant has a great selection of wine.  There is another restaurant located in Tribeca, see the website for more details. 10 Columbus Circle, (212) 823-6123, landmarc-restaurant.com.

    Lombardi’s Pizza: Few kids ever say “no” to pizza—why not introduce them to America’s first pizzeria? Still slinging some of the best pies in the city, Lombardi’s in SoHo offers a wide array of toppings from mozzarella and basil to clams, all atop the pizzeria’s exceptional crust. Cash only. 32 Spring Street, 212-941-7994, firstpizza.com.

    Lula’s Sweet Apothecary: To give your kid a sweet treat yet still keep it healthy, Lula’s serves all-vegan ice cream.  Set up like an old fashioned ice cream parlor, all of the ice cream is store made.  They also offer fair trade coffee and hot chocolate.  516 East 6th Street, lulassweetapothecary.com.

    Mars 2112: Blast off to the red planet for a unique dining adventure! Perfect for a space-themed birthday party or a family night out on the town, Mars 2112 is an interactive restaurant complete with a Martian landscape, Crystal Crater, and alien friends. 1633 Broadway, 212-489-2112, mars2112.com.

    Max: For some pasta and classic Italian dishes, visit Max. Many people rave about the meatloaf, not to mention the great prices. In the warmer months, try dining outside in their back garden.  181 Duane Street, (212) 966-5939, max-ny.com.

    Nanoosh: If you like to try and eat organic, come to Nanoosh; a casual restaurant that offers salads, hummus, soups and several organic beverages.  For your kid, get the root beer, for the adults; enjoy one of the the organic wines or beer.  2012 Broadway, (212) 362-7922, nanoosh.com.

    Ninja New York: For a fun, themed dinner with the kids, try Ninja New York; it’s a little more upscale than Mars 2112 and offers Japanese cuisine.  When you arrive, you can take the regular way or the ninja way to the table.  Be aware that it may be a little frightening for young children if you go the ninja way.  Also, consider calling to make a reservation.  25 Hudson Street, (212) 274-8500, ninjanewyork.com.

    Peanut Butter and Co.: The classic lunchbox staple is in almost everything served at this eatery.  The restaurant makes their own peanut butter, and has everything from the traditional peanut butter and jelly to a fluffernutter milkshake.  Don’t worry; they also have milk to wash down those gooey treats with! 240 Sullivan Street, (212) 677-3995, ilovepeanutbutter.com.

    Petite Abeille: Many rave that Sunday brunch is the best time to head to this restaurant.  There are a few different waffle selections, which they are known for.  Also head in for dinner to try their mussels, or for the adults, take a glimpse at their extensive beer list.  44 West 17th Street, (212) 727-2989, petiteabeille.com.

    Serendipity 3: Give your children a taste of literal serendipity with the delectable treats that have made Serendipity 3 an Upper East Side institution. From their famous frozen hot chocolate to an array of mouth-watering cakes and sundaes, this iconic restaurant ensures that even the sweetest tooth leaves satisfied. 225 East 60th Street, 212-838-3531, serendipity3.com.

    Shake Shack: This a great stop for a quick burger, especially in the summer, as there is only outdoor seating at this location in Madison Square Park. While the wait can be a little long, many believe the burgers and shakes are worth it. Madison Square Park, (212) 889-6600, shakeshack.com.

    S’MAC: If your child loves macaroni and cheese, then this is the place for them.  S’MAC, Sarita’s Macaroni And Cheese, only serves different varieties of this kid-loved comfort food.  Most people suggest sticking with the “nosh” size, as the dish can be very heavy.  345 East 12th Street, (212) 358-7912, smacnyc.com.

    Sweetiepie Restaurant:
    This whimsically decorated Greenwich Village sweet spot serves up ice cream, cookies, cake and more—along with an array of lunch and dinner fare ranging from schnitzel to fried chicken—in a cozy space outfitted with hot pink furniture and mirrored walls. 19 Greenwich Avenue, 212-337-3333, sweetiepierestaurant.com.

    Two Boots: This pizzeria provides flair with its blend of Italian and Cajun flavors.  The name “Two Boots” stems from the fact that both Italy and Louisiana, the inspiration for their food, are geographically shaped like boots.  Kids love to order the “pizza face,” an individual size pizza decorated with vegetables to make a face.  42 Avenue A, (212) 254-1919, twoboots.com.

    Virgil’s Barbecue: Kids love to eat with their fingers, so this is definitely the place for them. This joint serves up some great barbeque and will have your child licking their fingers by the end of the night.  Virgil’s also provides young ones with crayons and coloring books to help pass the time.  152 West 44th Street, (212) 921-9494, virgilsbbq.com.

    –additional reporting by Kate Willard

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