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Casual, family-friendly dinner near MIT Marriott?

I'm going to be in Cambridge for 2 weekday nights and I need recs for a restaurant to grab dinner with my family, which includes 2 kids around ages 2-3.

The problem is that they'll be exhausted from their inter-state drive to MA and they understandably want to stay near their hotel, the MIT/Cambridge Marriott on Broadway, close to the Kendall T.

Emma's would be ideal (pizza = great for kids) but they don't take reservations and sometimes there's a long wait. The Blue Room might be too stuffy..? Got any recommendations?

Thanks all!


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  1. Hungry Mother is the place that comes to mind.

    1. The Similians (sister restaurant to Brown Sugar) would be good if Thai is an option. Cambridge Brewing Company is another option. The food won't blow you away but it's a step above usual pub fare, they have great beer, it's definitely casual enough for the kids, and they have a great outdoor patio that may be open.

      1. I'll suggest Legal's at Kendall Square, I'm sure they're used to dealing with children, it's close by, and the food is good classic New England seafood.

        2 Replies
        1. re: steinpilz

          I think that particular branch of Legal's has been universally panned here on the board, if I recall. Check the board, perhaps.

          1. re: Bob Dobalina

            Not quite universal, I've recommended it several times. :-)

          1. Also you could try La Groceria on Main St almost to Mass Ave.

            1. There's a shuttle bus almost in front of your door that will take you to the Cambridgeside Galleria. There's a California Pizza place and a Cheesecake Factory, both of whom could handle young kids and you could get some adult food and the kids could have their pizza. I haven't tried the Legal's there, and it is a very short walk.

              1. Bertuccis is pretty close by

                1. I don't think Emma's would be too bad on a weeknight. Another good place would be Mulan (if your kids like Chinese food).

                  Cambridge Brewing would only be worth going to if you like craft beer. Legal only if you don't want to walk very far.

                  1. Black Sheep in the firehouse across from Legal is plenty edible. Not a destination restaurant, but plenty edible, especially if you can get an outside table.

                    You can also get a takeout pie from Emma's and eat it in the square at 1 Cambridge. Take a blanket, sit on the steps above the blue room, get coffee when you're done, watch the world go by.