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Kid-friendly Upper West Side nr Natural History Museum

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My husband and are Chowhounds, but his daughter and her kids are not. They like chinese, mexican, italian. We don't want to spend alot because they just don't appreciate it. Any suggestions for an early dinner near the Natural Musuem of History?

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  1. The perfect place is directly across the street on the corner of columbus and 81st Pizzeria Uno. I always see tons of kids and families in there...

    1. Most restaurants in the area are pretty kid-friendly esp for an early dinner. Isabella's is a pretty safe option with pasta (79th and col). Ocean Grill is a safe seafood option, half a block up on Col. My fave italian near that area is Celeste on Amsterdam and 84, but can be crowded depending on the time and small tables, would depend on what time you go (guess pretty safe before 7).

      1. I second Unos. Kids will get what they want from there and it is about as close as you can get. Also down near 72nd is China Fun. If you walk you can window shop.

        1. There is also a Teriyaki Boy and Jackson Hole going toward 86th Street on Columbus. And more "ethnic" selections if you walk up 79th over to Amsterdam.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Uptownflavor

            patsy's on w74 and columbus
            vynl on columbus near W85
            i agree with celeste and china fun.
            have fun wherever you go.
            please stay away from funky diner - very overpriced, bad food and service in my opinion.

          2. Flor de Mayo, on Amsterdam and about 83, is very family friendly and sure to please.
            Celeste (recommended by one poster below) is not a place for kids, IMHO. Too 'nice' and expensive.

            3 Replies
            1. re: curranthound

              Celeste is certainly not expensive. If you go early, the kids would definitely like the pizzas or any of the pastas. sounds like a party of at least 6 - which may be a bit tight there. It's great food. Cash only!

              Patsy's would work - as would something like San Luigi on 75th/Amsterdam - not fantastic food, but can accomodate large parties.

              1. re: harrison

                I would not take kids to Celeste, even before 7. Because if the daughter and her kids are not Chowhounds, they aren't going to like the types of pizza and pasta that are there. I'd vote Patsy's.

                1. re: Westrite

                  the answer here is clearly E.J's Luncheonnette just off 81st on Amsterdam Avenue. its a diner with exceptional food.

            2. How about Artie's Deli (bway & 83rd) or Popover Cafe (Amsterdam & 86th)? Both very kid friendly.

              4 Replies
              1. re: valerie

                There's a Mama Mexico or Cafe Frida up there with tableside guac, etc. which is fun for kids to watch being made

                  1. re: jsmitty

                    i second artie's, cafe frida (for lunch) and popovers. i'd stay away from mama mexico. it has really declined despite the high prices. i also think westrite has a good point re celeste.

                1. re: valerie

                  Definately wouldn't take anyone to Popover who didn't have a terribly long attention span....service is awful and kids get antsy. I agree with Patsy's on 74th, or EJ's, which is servicable, but am astounded to hear anyone call the food exceptional!!

                  1. Calle Ocho, which is right around the corner, Columbus around 81st?

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Bugsey34

                      If the OP doesn't want to spend alot, Calle Ocho is probably not a great option. It adds up fairly quickly since entrees are mostly in the $20+ range.

                    2. Hi all, thank you all so much for the suggestions. We ended up at China Fun, and it was perfect for the occasion/people, etc. I used to live in NY, and always ordered take-out from China Fun on the East Side. I forgot they had another restaurant on the West Side.

                      Calle Ocho sounds great - Peruvian Chinese? We went to a Peruvian- Italian last week in Boston. Anyway, my hubby and I are going to try it on our own.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: pobo

                        Who can resist a restaurant with fun in the title. I love their food...consistently good in both locations. They also had one down near Times Square at one time (around 49-50th Streets). Glad you all enjoyed yourselves.