The joys of parenthood are many. A cute partner for selfies, a dance partner for midday dance parties, someone to gossip about your friends to. But also: Some people are mean about babies in restaurants. Which can really ruin the whole thing. As Katie’s learned, the NYC restaurant scene is totally doable with li’l Harry in tow, it just takes a little strategic navigation. Actually, she’s even found that there are some perks to ‘dat mom life, like needing a super early res (you’ll get in places you never could have gotten into later), and how you’ve had a whole night out by 8 p.m.
Here’s a list of casual, not-crazy-quiet restaurants where you can bring your babe without catching shade from the sans-kids-crowd.
Get Lunch or Brunch
This is Tribeca’s most well known kid friendly brunch spot, ok maybe second to our next pick. But it’s our favorite. The pancakes are insane, the egg dishes never disappoint, and they make their own infused vodkas for that early morning bloody mary.
Tribeca and Meatpacking
This had to make the list. Because it’s just so damned kid friendly. I mean, most people without a stroller may try to avoid the spot (at least at their two downtown locations). But its delicious, large, and loud.
Multiple Locations (Tribeca, Park Avenue South, Uptown)
With three locations around the city (Murray Hill, Nomad, and Lincoln Square), this American Brassier has tons to choose from on the menu, is quick to seat you, makes a mean burger and salad, and kids are always welcome. They’ve also got some great private rooms for birthday parties or larger gatherings with families.
This lower Manhattan American restaurant has a healthy way of making great food. We love their egg dishes and salads. They’ve got a pretty bomb casual dinner menu when in need of something light. Get here early because it’s cozy and quaint.
49 Canal St.
NY, NY 10002
Another NYC mainstay in the breakfast/lunch repertoire, the downtown Grey Dog empire has great options for kids and parents, very easy and chill. Best described as chill. The people, the place, and the food. We love it and we love getting there early so we don’t have to wait in line.
Egg Shop Nolita
This place has some of the best brunch/breakfast dishes downtown but it’s kind of hard to get into primetime on a Saturday or Sunday. Lucky for you, because of the kids, you’re most likely up and about early and can get a table.
151 Elizabeth St.
New York, NY 10012
Jacob’s Pickles brings comfort food to NYC, along with pickles and lots of craft beers, that is both Southern but with a sophisticated, urban twist (Jacob is NY born and bred so it makes sense). The menu is huge, so you’ll want to come back for something new, and your beau will be happy because Jacob is not just a pickle expert, damn good chef, he’s also obsessed with craft beers so there is that. The lines can be long so come early (along with all the other families on the UWS) or try it for dinner. Neither one will disappoint.
509 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10024
ABC Kitchen & ABC Cocina
JG’s Union Square restaurants are connected by the ever alluring ABC Home store. They have been hot spots for a number of years. It’s a bit easier to get in there now, especially on the earlier side. So check them out, the seasonal menus and
35 East 18th street
New York, NY 10003
Two Hands Restaurant and Bar
This Tribeca restaurant brings clean, healthy eats with a laid back vibe, as you’d expect from the Aussie owners. The breakfast/brunch is amazing but their dinner is too, and its the atmosphere and healthy-simple dishes we love for an early dinner with the kiddos. They also have a great happy hour and snacks menu, so if you can’t get the family together for a dinner, no shame in coming for a cocktail with baby.
251 Church St.
New York, NY 10013
Soho’s American Brasserie, owned by Noho Hospitality Group (think Locanda Verde, Lafayette, and Bar Primi), is a delicious, casual spot with a great wine list and plenty to choose from for kids and parents (and brunch). We’re never disappointed by their oyster menu and martinis. What else could you want to start off your weekend?
131 Sullivan St.
New York, NY 10012
This new(ish) American – Italian inspired restaurant that has stayed relatively under the radar. Probably because it’s located just east of Park Avenue, in an area that is restaurant heavy. But it’s good! and they have great pizza, veggie heavy dishes, pastas, and a fab burger. The bars got tons of options and you can most likely walk in on the early side without an issue.
127 East 27th St.
New York, NY 10016
One of our favorite West Village red sauce Italian spots has been around for a long time and for good reason. They have a no nonsense attitude, it’s relaxed but is just as good as any high end spot, especially when you just need some baked clams or Veal Parm. Their Italian hospitality and casual approach to making everyone at the table happy makes you comfortable with the kiddos. And the meatballs are HUGE!
621 Hudson St.
New York, NY 10014
El Toro Blanco
Sometimes people say NY has sub-par Mexican. We do not agree. Plus, Mexican is always a good idea with the kids. El Toro Blanco has a slightly more fancied up approach on tacos and enchiladas, but still holds true to real Mexican flavors and sauces. Oh and its got a great NYC vibe with killer spicy margs.
257 6th Ave.
New York, NY 10014
If you need more places for a night or day out, check out our Restaurant Rolodex.
Know of other great restaurant recommendations we need to know about? We’d love to hear from you! Comment Below.