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fussy family group outing: a challenge for chowhounds!

Okay, so here's the scoop: 14 people, including a mom who doesn't like "foreign" food, a brother who is vegetarian, and 4 kids ranging from 1yr to 9yrs old. Where can we go for a group lunch downtown during the Christmas-to-New-Year's week?

I've searched every permutation here, with no luck -- veggie-friendly restaurants that don't do lunch, lunch restaurants that only do steak & burgers, and lunch stands that can't handle 14 at once.

Thanks all~

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  1. tough one- if you're willing to trek over to cambridge, henrietta's table, in the charles hotel would fit the bill. nice salads, big, spacious dining room and menu choices to please all the members of your group.

      1. We had a decent lunch for a fairly large group at that pub on Province St. (someone help me with the name), past Kennedy's. Also Kennedy's itself might work. Not the best ever but many sandwiches and entrees that will appeal to most people. Also the Kinsale across from the Govt. Center T. A little further away would be Beacon Hill Bistro for a nicer spot.

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        1. Stephanie's on Newbury Street... I'm not the hugest fan but it would fit the bill.

          1. I'm not sure if your mother would consider Italian food as foreign but if not, what about somewhere in the North End? Lots of veg options in pasta dishes. Grotto in Beacon Hill also might be a nice option for Italian. There's also a place in Beacon Hill called Scollay Square that can handle bigger groups and has one of those menus with something for everyone.

              1. How about Cantina Italiana in the North End? It is an old school family restaurant with a decent amount of room inside and has pasta, chicken, and seafood. They are open for lunch on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.

                1. It may be too "foreign" for your mother, but I think Shabu-Zen is a lot of fun for groups, and once people stretch their mind a bit to try it, everyone tends to enjoy it.

                  Less exotic but more $$$, Les Zygomates does a nice lunch and can accomodate a group. It's been awhile since I've been, but I remember their menu as being fairly general.

                  1. How about Miel in the new Intercontinental on the waterfront. French brasserie..I haven't tried the food yet; but had a drin at the bar the other night and the people next to us enjoyed their food.

                    I wasn't as down on the bar as some posters have been.

                    1. Thanks for the input!

                      Yes, Shabu-Zen is off the scale for mom, and when I checked on some other recommendations elsewhere in CH-land (Hub Pub, Legals, Stephanie), the reviews were mixed...

                      I'll give a try to Laurel & report back!