Has anyone ever told you that you should plan all of your vacations around food? If you think about it, it’s sound advice. Food, after all, doesn’t just provide our bodies with nourishment, but also a respite from some of life’s stresses – just like a vacation.
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This is especially true if you are planning a vacation to New York City. New York is home to some of the best restaurants in the world. The city boasts a multitude of restaurants that we anticipate for months, reserve well in advance, and savor for a lifetime. Though there is plenty of upscale dining in the Big Apple, there are also plenty of family-friendly restaurants. After all, it wouldn’t be the center of fine dining without a little something for everyone.
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Good restaurants and delicious food are often at the heart of a great vacation. In many cases, we get a sense of a particular destination through the local eats. New York City is no different. Many travelers shudder to think how much they’ll spend on food alone in a city like New York, especially on a family vacation. But it doesn’t have to be that way because there are many city restaurants that allow you to enjoy the city like the foodie family you are.
With thousands of great restaurants in New York City, it can be a challenge to narrow it down to just a few options, but let’s try. Here are some family-friendly restaurants you should check out on your trip to New York (listed in no particular order, of course!)
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Families in search of a hearty, delicious brunch should, without a doubt, head to Bubby’s. With two locations in Tribeca and Brooklyn, both of which are open for brunch and dinner daily, Bubby’s welcomes families of all shapes and sizes for an awesome spread. Choose from brunch staples like eggs benedict and sourdough pancakes or matzo ball soup and simple mac-and-cheese. Don’t forget to nab a slice of Bubby’s famous pie – just like your grandmother would make!
Are you in the mood for a little BBQ? Though you may not associate a big northeastern city like New York with barbecue, Blue Smoke is the place to be. And, it’s super family-friendly. Start with some North Carolina salt peanuts – everyone loves ‘em! Let the kids choose from a great menu, but the Memphis baby back ribs are the winner! Mom and dad might love the smoky pulled pork or seven-pepper rubbed brisket with a nice cold beer. Hit either Manhattan location – Blue Smoke can be found in Battery Park City and the Flatiron District.
If you don’t mind paying for the experience – as well as some tasty food – Ninja is the place to be. Set in the style of a Japanese village and populated by ninja waiters, you’re definitely paying for the performance, though it’s well worth it for the kids. The ninjas not only serve your sushi and experimental art dishes (over dry ice) but also perform magic and card tricks! Oh, and be prepared for some surprises on the way to your table! So, if you’ll be in Tribeca and in the mood for something exciting, stop in at Ninja.
A stop in New York City would be incomplete without some really good pizza – and it doesn’t get much better than Lombardi’s. On the edge of Little Italy, Lombardi’s is actually the first pizzeria in America – and it’s going strong. With a simple menu – just pizza, calzones, and salad – you don’t have to worry about what the kids will eat. Pleasantly loud and lots of fun, the coal-fired pizza is a must-have. But keep this in mind: Lombardi’s is cash only.
The list of restaurants the whole family will love throughout the city could go on for pages! If the places above don’t fit your fancy, you might want to check out one of the establishments owned and operated by restaurateur Louis Ceruzzi. A prolific restaurateur channeling his passion for fine wines and Italian culture, he has brought to the city several fine dining experiences including Sfoglia, Via Quadronno, and Bar Roma. You may find Bottega del Vino of particular interest. Nestled in the heart of Manhattan, the restaurant features more than 2,000 wines (something lots of parents need on a family vacation!) as well as a delectable sampling of Northern Italian cuisine, desserts, and cappuccinos.
So, there you have it, folks! You should no longer fret over breaking the bank on food alone during a family vacation to New York City, as you can see there are a number of high-quality, family-friendly establishments throughout the entire area.