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Lunch before Wicked with 12-year old girls

Hi. I'm going to be chaperoning my 12 year old niece and 2 or 3 of her friends (ack!!) on their class trip to Wicked. I was wondering if anyone could recommend a good place to bring them for lunch before the show. Their requirements are "someplace with really good desserts" and "nothing gross"! I just want something within walking distance to the Gershwin. Any suggestions are welcome, as I have no idea what kids that age like. Thanks

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  1. To clarify, will you be taking just your niece and her friends to lunch. Or is this lunch (and show) for the whole class? If the latter, we would need to know how many there are since recommendations would differ substantially depending on the numbers.

    1 Reply
    1. re: RGR

      It will just be the 4 girls and myself. Thanks

    2. If they like cheesecake, there's a Junior's (famous for their cheesecake) on 45 st. just off Broadway. A bit closer to the theater, Maison is a French brasserie with everything from good burgers and omelets to salads etc. The address is 1700 Broadway but it's actually at 53 rd St & 7th Ave. Have not had the desserts there.

      1. I know I always suggest it and one of these days RGR is going to slap me for it but in this case there's nothing closer and it makes perfect sense. Ellen's Stardust Diner.

        You want something close to the Gershwin theater, Ellen's is on Broadway no more than a 30second walk from the theater, it's about half a block away.

        You're going with a bunch of 12 year old girls. It's a restaurant where Broadway actors/actresses work when they're not doing a show, they sing and dance quite well while serving your food. It's entertaining and extremely kid friendly.

        You want something with "really good desserts" and "nothing gross". It's a 50's diner a few blocks from Times Square. If it was disgusting, it wouldn't be open anymore, the food is good, I've never had any bad experiences and I've gone at least a dozen times. Being a diner, the food is simple, guarenteed not to scare anyone with a young palate. Also, they have amazing milkshakes and desserts; I've definitly gone there a few times just for dessert.

        You can go plenty of other places in the general area of the Gershwin; but Ellen's is the closest, the most kid friendly, and in my opinion for a pre-show meal that is good, simple, and inexpensive, it's the best.

        3 Replies
        1. re: hungry_fox

          I don't know about Ellens, would 12 be too old for that? They might be "too cool" for singing actressess? My 3 and 5 year old neices, on the other hand, loved it.

          1. re: CorgiLover

            12 too old? Hell my parents and 14year old sister love Ellen's. Besides, it's not as if they're singing disney songs, plus if these girls like musicals, I doubt they'd consider themselves too cool for out of work broadway actressess.

          2. re: hungry_fox

            Hey, hungry_fox, Slap you?! lol This may surprise you, but under the right circumstances, I've been known to suggest Ellen's Stardust myself. :-o :-o In this case, it actually happens to be the first place that occurred to me. To be honest, I've not been there, but your description computes exactly with everything I've read about it.

            http://www.ellensstardustdiner.com

            In an entirely different vein, Marseille might also be a good option. It's a bit further away, on the corner of 9th Av. & 44th St. But I think the girls -- and their "chaperone" -- would really enjoy the upbeat vibe of this very attractive brasserie. The food's excellent, and among the items on the French/Mediterranean menu is a first-rate burger (just in case nothing else appeals). Plus, the desserts are delicious!

            http://www.marseillenyc.com

          3. Alice's Tea Cup - upper west side, 73rd I think. not close to the theater but a cute fun place for little girls. http://www.alicesteacup.com/

            3 Replies
              1. re: travelnfood

                If we're going to be suggesting places *not* close to the theator, why has no one suggested Seredipity yet? When I was reading her request all I could think was "This request SCREAMS seredipity." The girls will love it, and it has their request- GREAT DESSERTS- written all over it. Really, IMO would be the perfect fit. Cute atmopshere, and at the time you are going (pre theator), it shouldn't be crowded.

                1. re: CorgiLover

                  I went to Wicked today. We stopped at Alice's on 73rd beforehand. Everyone really enjoyed it. Thanks for the suggestion from six years ago.

              2. i think the vynl diner would be perfect. they do sandwiches and burgers and salads and comfort food, but they also have some pretty good stir fries and asian-y things. it's inexpensive and i think 12-year olds would love it. the place is very colorful, the menus are in old record album covers and each bathroom is a tribute to a singer. There's elvis and cher and dolly parton, and when you close the bathroom door, that artists music starts up. it's on 9th betweem 50th and 51st, just a block from the theater. enjoy!

                2 Replies
                1. re: funkymonkey

                  I like Vynl too - though I can't vouch for the desserts since I haven't tried any.

                  1. re: piccola

                    Vynl is indeed great for younger eaters! I brought my teenage cousins there for brunch and they enjoyed their eggs and french toast. The milk shakes are thick and good, but I've not had desserts there. Also, the decor should keep them busy. My cousins were busy taking pictures of the bathrooms =) (like all good asian tourists) I attached my blog entry below just as an fyi.
                    Pigalle, a casual french restaurant on 48th and 8th is a good option too. Breakfast food all day, quiches, burgers and sandwiches, and some french dishes, plus quite a good array of desserts. And, if the weather is good, they throw open the floor length glass windows and even if 8th ave isn't very picturesque, the 12 yr olds may enjoy it.

                    http://orderinny.blogspot.com/2007/01...

                2. If they like Chinese then they'll be impressed by Ruby Foo's, an upscale, quite decent restaurant with impressive decor. I've only been once (taking my child, then about 12, and she loved it). We ordered a single piece of cake to share for 3 of us, and it was enormous and one of the best parts of the meal. Prices on the high side for Chinese, but you can share dumplings and the like so it need not be a really expensive check.

                  1. John's Pizzeria on West 44th ...Just go early enough to leave time to walk to the theater, because it is several blocks from it, but hey, we always walk a lot in NY....

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: jinet12

                      I agree that Ruby Foo's which is fun and loud asian restaurant would be a good choice. The food isn't the best I have ever had, but the dessert is really good and the food is above par. I think it would be good for young girls. I suggest the dessert bento box.

                      1. re: jinet12

                        Everyone needs to keep in mind that while a few blocks are a bit of a walk but no big deal for us, 12year old girls are SLOW walkers and it could take twice as much time to get the same distance as it would without them. You should relaly consider that when doing a pre-theater show, you don't want to be late, so keeping the restaurant close to the theater is probably the best thing.