New York with Kids
We're going to be in NY with two children, ages eight and ten, who are NOT adventurous eaters. Will put a real cramp in the chowhound style. I'm wondering whether anyone can recommend good restaurants or places for kids. Not necessarily looking for theme restaurants, but places with character or tradition, good food, and child friendly. Sit down restaurants with great hamburgers, pizza, etc. Also bakeries, ice cream, etc.
The previous poster hit the nail on the head. Serendipity has been a stand-by for families with children visiting New York for a generation, and for good reason. The entire experience, although often crowded--and with sometimes disappointing food--can be wonderful. There is still a childlike electricity and air of discovery in the place. It's now dated, but it can still be truly memorable. My kids loved it. When I was a kid, I loved it.
Angelo's Pizza - thin crust - good salads for the grown-ups too. The one closest to where you're likely to be is on 57th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues.
There's a chi-chi (for kids) dessert place in FAO Schwartz - on the 58th St. side bet 5th & Madison. I get a sugar high just looking in the window! And the Apple Store is right in front of FAO on 5th. Between the two places, you should be able to entertain the kids for hours.
If you give us an idea of what neighborhoods you're going to be in, we can probably come up with places that aren't a long hike for the kids.
I second (or third) Serendipity -- the food is decent and the kids will love it, even if they're picky. Get the frozen hot chocolate. If you want to indulge them, you can take them to Max Brener, which is a chocolate shop that has a restaurant (my kids call it the "chocolate restaurant") near Union Square. If they're willing to eat Asian Food, Saigon Grill on University is right around the corner, and so is Patsy's pizza.
For great burgers (and lots of variety) try Stand - it's pretty kid friendly especially at lunch or early dinner. If the weather is on the milder side you can also go to Shake Shack in Madison Square Park. The seating is all outside but given that we've been getting some nicer weather it might work out depending on when you're here.
Landmarc is also a good new/modern American restaurant but not fussy and definitely kid friendly. There are two locations - one in TriBeCa and another at the Time Warner Center (at Columbus Circle). The food is well prepared so parents don't have to sacrifice for the kids' sake - and I say that from the experience of dining out with my 5 year old.
Not sure where you're traveling from but if you think the kids might like BBQ, then I'd recommend RUB or Hill Country.
John's in Time Square is a decent spot for pizza. Also Arturo's on Houston St - they have pizza and lots of other types of entrees and is a long-standing NYC institution.