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Dec 6, 2013 08:44 AM

Best baby-friendly places in LA

There hasn't been a thread in a while, so I was wondering if anyone has tips/recommendations for dining out with babies/kids in town. Thanks!

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  1. hey talaria, we have 2 kids and have dined out with them a ton. there are a bunch of good choices, but it depends on:

    1. what kind of food do you want
    2. how old are your kids
    3. do you want them to eat

    my youngest is 4 months so I forgot how key that last one is. she doesn't eat food so it really opens things up a bit!

    7 Replies
    1. re: MoreMolecules

      1. Open to all kinds of food as long as it's good
      2. At present just a few months, so
      3. They will not be eating!

      1. re: talaria I have found as long as you go early or when they first open you can go almost anywhere.

        1. re: talaria

          I feel like at this point, it's more about your comfort level. We just had my youngest at a late birthday dinner at Son of a Gun, and we popped her in a baby sling and she slept the whole time. Just also did the same at Racion.

          The only places in LA that I felt were aggro towards little ones were Hatfields years ago when they denied me a high chair, and L&E oyster bar, when they giddily told me they have nothing that a child might like. But your kid neither sits in high chairs or eats so you are solid.

          1. re: talaria

            3MO? You can literally go anywhere.

            Maybe w/ the exception of CUT/MASTRO/Ursasawa and the ilk of, course.

            Also, per the usual, check for inspiration. I was recently told the site owner took an infant to the Breslin in an Ergo.

            Also also, I've done the same at L2O, and will be taking another to The Nomad shortly.

            I don't think any restaurant needs to automatically have high chair/boosters. It's the parents onus to check.

            Sycamore has become a madly popular place for kids on the weekends, ditto to FarmShop. Robata Jinya is surprisingly full of kids. Piftire Fairfax, with a new cocktail menu now, is defacto kids joints in the nabe. Square One at the boathouse has been great for kids as well.

            Otherwise, it's hilarious (or not) to see toddlers simply destroy a dimsum restaurant. Tip accordingly.

            1. re: TonyC

              Oh yea, it's definitely on the parents to check. If a restaurant has no high chairs, the message is pretty clear though!

              1. re: TonyC

                I think a baby would be fine at Mastro or Cut because its already pretty large and loud. It's the really small and intimate and quiet places where I'd feel like a hunger or diaper change squeak would make me really self conscious

                1. re: TonyC

                  ... and will be taking a toddler to The Nomad shortly.


                  Yours? You pro-created? Congrats mon ami!

                  When you going to be in NYC? Seems like I'm there half the time I'm not.

            2. I've experienced children in nice places around town who were complete mannerly angels. Unless I looked over at them I would have never known they were there.
              On the other hand…

              We all have experienced the child (and parents) who're not the least bit concerned about the other diners and the best place for them is probably McDonald's….the ones with those big Jungle Jims.

              1. Hands down Souplantation.

                1. Any neighborhood or area you are looking for? Price range?
                  Welcome to LA.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: wienermobile

                    Closer to Hollywood/Midcity/maybe some of Studio City would be preferable, but open to wherever, and whatever price range.

                    1. re: talaria

                      The Original Farmers Market at 3rd and Fairfax. Food stalls and restaurants plus lots of seating. Open till 9pm rain or shine daily. A giant taste of LA.

                  2. My daughter is almost 2, which is a very different experience from 4 months old. I found that for the first 6 to 9 months or so, we could go anywhere. Once she was walking, it became more difficult. Once she got a mind of her own it was even more difficult.

                    At this point, I bring her to chain restaurants that I never would've considered prior to having a baby. The food is usually not great, but I don't feel so bad if she decides to screech or squeal loudly.

                    I'm in Westwood and on the non-chain side, I go to Food (for breakfast), Pitfire Pizza (I'm aware that this is a local chain), and Plan Check (surprisingly). In general, places that have patios are better because the occasional squeal and food on the floor is less of an issue. (I always leave a very generous tip if we have made a big mess.)

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: DanielleW

                      Agreed. Patio dining is a great option when eating out with kiddos. If my daughter gets squirmy or loud, I find it much less stressful when we're eating outdoors... easy to get up, walk around and let her do her thing in between bites. And usually there are other parents in the same boat with me, which I find comforting as a newbie parent. The patios/outdoor spaces at Sycamore Kitchen, Bludso's and Top Round are in our rotation.