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Oct 22, 2002 07:48 PM

Concord, CA chow hole

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I am looking for a place in Concord that is kid friendly, cheap (less than $8 per entree), good for a group of 10 and is fun

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    Kathleen Mikulis

    My recommendation would go to Rocco's Pizzeria - in Walnut Creek at Ygnacio Valley & Oak Grove, but only a block or two from the city line. I wrote a review of it yesterday you may want to check out. They also have an assortment of toys on hand I believe. (My boyfriend and I played with some of them last time. :)

    Some of my other suggestions fall along the chain route:

    I know it's blasphemy on chowhound but I like Spaghetti Factory located in downtown Concord (kiddie menus, too). My favorite dishes are the spaghetti & meatballs (I believe it's better than anywhere else) and the manager's special: half spaghetti with mizithra cheese/half spaghetti with mushroom sauce). Skip the chicken and specialty entrees. Great creamy pesto salad dressing. ($8 entrees)

    I also like California Pizza Kitchen which is a little out of the way in downtown Walnut Creek. Also, a kiddie menu. And great roasted garlic chicken pizza, sesame ginger chicken wontons, and focaccia checca. ($9 entrees)

    In the future if you are willing to spend $20 and up a person, I would recommend El Morocco in Pleasant Hill which is a *really* fun environment with belly dancing (and audience participation) and good food.

    Similarly, a Turkish kebab lounge (Ephesus) opened recently in Walnut Creek (and reviewed favorably on chowhound) which sounds fun, but I suspect is above the $8 limit (even though it's tapas) and might not be great for kids.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Kathleen Mikulis
      Kathleen Mikulis

      One other suggestion that came to mind:

      Pasta Pomodoro in Pleasant Hill. It's in your price range, but I think it's just an okay environment for kids.

      1. re: Kathleen Mikulis

        Looked for your review of Rocco's but couldn't find it. Is this the same Rocco who used to be at the top of Solano and then down at San Pablo and Marin in Albany. He was East Coast, trained at Ca Culinary Academy and made the only plain cheese pizza that I have ever wanted to eat. He was very brusque, almost rude, but that pizza was out of this world.

          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            Thanks. I failed to note that the op was from 2002 and was looking in this past weekend's posts. I emailed the restaurant. If this is the same guy, he made the only NY style pizza that I have ever craved.

      2. JJ North's Grand Buffet in Concord. All you can eat/drink. Includes soft drinks, milk, tea, coffee, salad bar, several entrees w/carving station (entrees vary each evening) and large selection of deserts. Costs about $10.00 per adult and children pay on a sliding age scale when under twelve years (very reasonable). Under 2 years old is free.

        My kids think this is the greatest place on earth. They have fun making and creating their own floats, sundae's, pie ala mode. They went crazy when I should them how to make an old fashioned chocolate soda.

        1. Last month, walking in the dark trying to find an uncrowded kid-friendly restaurant in WC, we happened on Ephesus. The kids loved everything on the menu. Between 4 of us, we could sample the kitchen's range. Good kid cocktails from the bar. The servers treated our children like adults. There needs to be more restaurants like this: no fried food kids menu, servers who are truly welcoming to kids. Ephesus was a little pricier than the well-known WC chains but the atmosphere and overall graciousness was worth it. Sadly, it was a Sat. night and the place was less than half full, mostly with couples.