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Cool &/or ethnic place to bring kids for lunch near AMC van ness movie theater

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i'm planning to bring my kids to a matinee at amc 1000 tomorrow. i was hoping to bring them to lunch afterwards nearby (tenderloin okay, within reason). my kids like interesting food experiences so i'd welcome suggestions like that. (note: they've tried vietnamese sandwiches, which they basically liked, although some are just too fiery for them.)

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  1. Tommy's Joynt is right across the street. I would classify that as an interesting food experience. Make sure to hit the pickle bin.

    1 Reply
    1. re: srr

      That was my first thought too. Kids would probably find the busy decor interesting. Let them read the wall poster about buffaloes. Plus it's always fun to pick your own food cafeteria style and watch it get carved, plated, and served. Definitely hit the pickle bin.

      There is a naan n' curry, though some of the dishes will definitely be fiery.

    2. Fina Estampa at Geary and Van Ness is Peruvian and Spanish.

      http://www.finaestampasf.com/

      2 Replies
      1. re: c oliver

        Have you been there lately? It's been ages since it's been talked about here and looks so deserted whenever I drive by.

        1. re: Melanie Wong

          I haven't. We originally went to their place in the Mission many years ago. I did check to see that their website was there before posting but that's all. And now that I think about it, they might not have been open for lunch anyway. Thanks for the tickler.

      2. There's a zillion Vietnamese restaurants in the Tenderloin. My favorties are Mangosteen, Bodega Bistro and Turtle Tower, all on the same block of Larkin between Eddy and Ellis, Turtle Tower is a pho place with the best chicken pho ever.

        2 Replies
          1. re: c oliver

            Alborz for decent Persian food

            I would second the Tommy's recommendation though; not ethnic, but still interesting and extremely kid-friendly