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Italian suggestions - baby in tow

We're planning on taking our babysitter out to dinner for her birthday. Her favorite food is Italian. Since the sitter's going, that means our 17 month old is going. Can I get some recommendations for quality Italian that won't have issues with a kid in tow? We really like Vespaio but I don't know if kids are welcome there or not.

thanks!

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  1. How about that Italian buffet place; think it's called Bucco de Beppi...and yes, it would be good manners not bringing your 17 month old to Vespaio

    4 Replies
    1. re: amysuehere

      Buca di Beppo is great for kids, and IMHO, does a serviceable job with the food - better than some of the ambitious new places around here. Unless something has changed, it isn't a buffet - they just serve big family style portions of what you order. Kitschy and fun.

      1. re: saticoy

        I think the place is called Canoli Joe's...the italian buffet spot.

        1. re: chowinginaustin

          That's what I was thinking of. Canoli J's, but Bucca isn't a bad option either.

          1. re: amysuehere

            I think Mandola's would be okay too. Its pretty informal and I don't think they would have problems with kids there (I see enough of them when I'm there).

    2. I often see people with kids (even infants in detached carseats) at Enoteca. (Next door to Vespaio, co-owned.) Especially in the earlier time slots -- 5 to 7 pm. And for my money, Enoteca beats the tar out of most of the recommendations you're getting below.

      2 Replies
      1. re: tom in austin

        I would say Enoteca's fair game for well-behaved parents and their offspring.

        1. re: amysuehere

          I think we'll try this. We've been meaning to go there and our daughter is very well behaved so that's not a concern. thanks!

      2. I like Reale's. It's not fancy and I think their food is good (for Austin). I would bring our baby there (if it's early enough).

        1 Reply
        1. re: Hsien_Ko

          I've never sat down there, but I can attest to the fact that I've seen quite a few families w/ small children walking in & out of Reale's while waiting on my takeout order.

        2. The original comment has been removed
          1. We've taken our 4 year old and have seen kids at Enoteca and Sagra, the new Italian place where Mars used to be located. Primizie Osteria and Mandola's even have kids menus so they are obviously kid friendly.