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In search of: Saturday brunch/lunch, toddler friendly, near Hollywood Hills

J.L. Apr 28, 2013 09:08 AM

Hi gang,

Meeting up with some friends, and we need a toddler friendly place near their property in Hollywood Hills. I've been given the task of finding a venue, and I need help. Either side of the hill is fine. Budget's not an issue.

Thanks in advance,


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  1. wienermobile RE: J.L. Apr 28, 2013 09:47 AM

    Mess Hall. Saturday & Sunday brunch 10am-3pm.

    1. ipsedixit RE: J.L. Apr 28, 2013 11:24 AM

      What exactly does "toddler friendly" entail? Serious question.

      I mean, are we talking toddler friendly food? Ambiance? Both?

      6 Replies
      1. re: ipsedixit
        J.L. RE: ipsedixit Apr 28, 2013 04:12 PM

        Good question: I mean a toddler friendly ambiance (i.e. hopefully other couples with toddlers are also there as well, with most diners not batting an eyelash).

        All the Chowpups in our group enjoy adult food, so the food can be "grown-up".

        Soory I wasn't more specific in my original post.

        1. re: J.L.
          ipsedixit RE: J.L. Apr 28, 2013 07:18 PM

          Square One or Home maybe? Don't feel that strongly about either, but ..

          (By the way, the question about toddler friendly wasn't really directed at you in particular per se, but just curious about it generally as I see it asked quite often on these boards and no one seems to really clarify what they mean by "toddler friendly")

          1. re: ipsedixit
            wienermobile RE: ipsedixit Apr 28, 2013 07:49 PM

            To me toddler friendly means they offer highchairs, not dark or too loud with space to take a walk around the resturant without being too disruptive to the staff or other customers who will glare at you, not too fancy with friendly servers and toddler friendly food plus not too long of a wait for a table and a large bathroom with extra points for a changing table. For my kids Souplantion was the perfect todldler friendly restaurant.

            1. re: wienermobile
              ipsedixit RE: wienermobile Apr 28, 2013 07:59 PM

              Me thinks Mess Hall does not fit that description, does it?

              1. re: ipsedixit
                wienermobile RE: ipsedixit Apr 28, 2013 08:10 PM

                Not perfect. But it does meet some of what they seem to be looking for in that area with good food too.

            2. re: ipsedixit
              kevin RE: ipsedixit Apr 30, 2013 11:39 AM

              I really like Square One. Though I have not been in a few years now.

        2. m
          Maxine Faulk RE: J.L. Apr 28, 2013 08:02 PM

          Cheebo http://cheebo.com/

          1. soniabegonia RE: J.L. Apr 28, 2013 08:19 PM

            For something really homey, consider Beachwood Cafe, right in Beachwood Canyon/Hollywoodland. The food is about average, but it's a nice, sun-filled space with a room off to the side away from the main room that is quiet and quite pleasant. Feels like home. http://beachwoodcafe.com/

            2 Replies
            1. re: soniabegonia
              TonyC RE: soniabegonia Apr 28, 2013 09:01 PM

              +1. family oriented, a Vietnamese chef who doesn't like to cook American food, cooking American food. It doesn't get more hipster ironic than that.

              1. re: TonyC
                linus RE: TonyC Apr 29, 2013 07:56 AM

                isn't the phrase "h____r ironic" a double positive?

            2. m
              maudies5 RE: J.L. Apr 28, 2013 08:20 PM

              The Hungry Cat offers grown-up food and is very toddler friendly. David Lentz and Suzanne Goin, the owners quite understand your dilemma. They have 3 toddlers. Weekend brunch is great as is lunch and dinner. Love the patio and I'll bet the kiddies will also love it. I am posting the website but you should look at the Hollywood and Vine location

              3 Replies
              1. re: maudies5
                Dirtywextraolives RE: maudies5 Apr 29, 2013 06:14 PM

                I suppose the children could run around outside next to the patio, as it is a bit of an out of the way alcove, but other than that, the place is TINY, expensive and what food would they eat? I don't even take my 9 & 11 y. o. There anymore because their burger is such a rip and my kids don't want blue cheese on it.... Substitutions are usually frowned upon there....

                1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                  maudies5 RE: Dirtywextraolives Apr 29, 2013 08:34 PM

                  My well-mannered toddler grandkids do not "run around." They love Hungry Cat and Tavern. Your kids are 9 and 11 and my grandkids are 3 and 5 and adore The Hungry Cat. They love the soft scrambled eggs at brunch in both venues and pancakes in both venues. We have ordered off-menu pasta dishes for them and the restaurant(s) have been very accommodating. Re: Pug Burger: I love it and always order it without the blue cheese. Substitutions are more friendly at The Hungry Cat and Tavern than any other fine dining restaurants which come to mind. Gjelina frowns upon substitutions. The Goin-Lentz restaurants are very nice about this. It disturbs me that you would make a statement that "substitutions are usually frowned upon there." This is not true,

                  1. re: maudies5
                    Dirtywextraolives RE: maudies5 Apr 30, 2013 11:10 AM

                    Firstly, not sure where in my post you read that I am accusing your "well-mannered toddler grandkids" of running around. I don't even know you, so why would I make a statement about your family? Your grandchildren may be well behaved and NEVER have the need to get out of their seats at a restaurant, but I've eaten out enough to know to never assume ALL toddlers are as angelic as yours.

                    Secondly, I have been to HC enough times to know we were told on more than one occasion that they would NOT substitute anything (the request was cheddar) for the blue cheese on the pug burger. They will be happy to abstain from putting the cheese or avocado on the burger, but they WILL not substitute it for something else. So what we ended up with was an unadorned burger for $17. Big difference, and you happen to be incorrect.

              2. m
                macdog RE: J.L. Apr 29, 2013 08:38 PM

                Alcove on Hillhurst is mainly outdoors and a very casual place. Had dinner at Messhall last week and the outdoor patio had a couple kids eating with their parents and had a kid friendly menu.

                1. k
                  kevin RE: J.L. Apr 30, 2013 11:38 AM

                  Square One Dining.

                  1. J.L. RE: J.L. May 11, 2013 09:32 PM

                    OP reporting back.

                    We went to Messhall in a Saturday. I didn't realize until we pulled up to park that this space used to house Louise's Trattoria. The patio was happenin' (and near capacity), but we parents wanted a bigger table in the dining room instead, and there were plenty of those available.

                    The staff was very courteous and understanding of our 3 Chowpups in tow. Lots of napkins, water refills, prompt order-taking. Kudos.

                    The food: I tried the chicken & waffles, which was OK. My friend's steak & eggs were cooked to order, and decent tasting.

                    Thanks for the advice, everyone!

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: J.L.
                      Dirtywextraolives RE: J.L. May 11, 2013 09:49 PM

                      Good to know, haven't tried that pace. Thanks for letting me know what it was like. Glad they treated your party well. That is always a plus when you take out little kids.

                      1. re: J.L.
                        macdog RE: J.L. May 11, 2013 10:15 PM

                        Before it was Louise's it was Michaels and it started as a Brown Derby!

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