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Drawing a blank -- really good somewhat touristy family friendly suggestions?

v
vvv03 Dec 20, 2013 08:43 PM

We have friends coming into town who want to meet us for lunch or dinner on Dec. 27. They love NY and like to hit places they have heard of, not necessarily hidden gems. They have two grown kids and we have well behaved 7 and 10 year olds. They first suggested Eataly, which I was game for, but then they decided they weren't into it. Then he suggested Union Square cafe. I've heard about it, but have never been. I think it may be a bit too upscale for 2 little kids, though. They don't need crayons at the table or anything, but I wouldn't necessarily want to bring them somewhere that others think is awesome for a romantic anniversary dinner. I thought of Balthazar, which is an old standby for me, but I'm not sure I can get reservations and I also think I have taken one too many out of town guests there. I know I am missing other places where the food will impress and the vibe will be sufficiently cool NY. I don't think location matters too much. Any ideas?

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  1. ipsedixit RE: vvv03 Dec 20, 2013 09:17 PM

    Lombardi's?

    1. coasts RE: vvv03 Dec 21, 2013 02:45 AM

      Otto has tables for eight available on Opentable.

      1. k
        kathryn RE: vvv03 Dec 21, 2013 04:25 AM

        Try for lunch/brunch at Balthazar. Call and ask--it wouldn't hurt to inquire. Pastis as a backup?

        Maybe Katz's Deli, also for lunch?

        Spotted Pig? A Momofuku?

        5 Replies
        1. re: kathryn
          loratliff RE: kathryn Dec 21, 2013 07:18 AM

          Spotted Pig might be a tight squeeze for a group of seven or eight.

          I agree with Pasti's, Balthazar, and Otto.

          1. re: loratliff
            f
            foodwhisperer RE: loratliff Dec 21, 2013 07:48 AM

            I'll also agree on Pastis ( if Balthazar is booked), Katz's,
            Otto, I'll even add Carmine's or Becco ( touristy),
            I agree on Lombardi's ( oldest pizza in NYC, i think).
            Tribeca Grill is a nice place, Lure ( although the food isn't great, it is suitable for OP needs), Odeon ( Tribeca popular spot)

            1. re: foodwhisperer
              p
              plf515 RE: foodwhisperer Dec 24, 2013 01:14 PM

              Otto should be fine with a group and with kids. Not stellar food, but quite nice.

            2. re: loratliff
              ipsedixit RE: loratliff Dec 21, 2013 11:03 AM

              I was going to suggest Spotted Pig, but I worried a bit about the 7 and 10 year old.

            3. re: kathryn
              c
              carfreeinla RE: kathryn Dec 25, 2013 12:36 AM

              Interesting that I saw more than one infant at Spotted Pig this past week but I would never take a kid- way too tight a squeeze and the food isn't really kid friendly ( the choice of cheese on the burger is what does it).
              Have you defined a neighborhood? That could inform the choice.

            4. v
              vvv03 RE: vvv03 Dec 21, 2013 10:02 AM

              Great suggestion! thanks, all!!

              1. d
                debinqueens RE: vvv03 Dec 22, 2013 02:57 PM

                how about don Antonio? great pizza, not a pizza parlor atmosphere. you can get drinks, the kids can get sodas. the staff tends to dote on children as well.

                1. b
                  bronwen RE: vvv03 Dec 23, 2013 08:18 AM

                  People don't much like Carmine's on this board but I like the Upper west side branch. The Breslin is fun.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bronwen
                    p
                    plf515 RE: bronwen Dec 24, 2013 01:12 PM

                    The hot Italian hero sandwich is pretty good at Carmine's for lunch.

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