Yeah it’s a conundrum: The kids’ gotta eat, you want to eat out…but where can you all be satisfied? A few ideas from the restaurant critic’s most critical associate: Her 12-year-old daughter:
Burgers are almost always a hit with kids like me. I like the ones at Zippy’s Giant Burgers and Skillet; though it can be hard to fit my mouth around the Skillet burger it is made with bacon jam, which should be spread across everything kids eat. I also like a good Red Mill burger. (Not to sound obsessed, but you should see the mountain of bacon they have next to the stove.)
I also like restaurants where everything has a lot of flavor packed into it. (Mom sometimes thinks this can be overdone, but she’s not writing this one, is she?) Like at icon Grill, where I’ve had macaroni and cheese they actually pour a little pitcher of melted cheese into; or BluWater Bistro, which has fabulous fish tacos (it’s the only way I’ll eat fish) and s’mores for dessert.
I’m generally a fan of Tom Douglas’ restaurants, especially Palace Kitchen (I love his roast chicken) and takeout from Seatown Seabar & Rotisserie To-Go (his pot pies or any of the meats, like the really flavorful porchetta, followed by one of his big chocolate-chocolate chip cookies). You can tell he has a kid in his life…at the Dahlia Lounge I always used to get a dish called Oodles of Noodles with a bag of baby doughnuts for dessert. Yum.
Pasta is a category all its own. I love the lasagne at Cafe Lago, the ravioli at Osteria La Spiga (plus you can watch them making it through a little window into the kitchen), and any of the pastas at Tavolata. It’s fun to go to La Medusa or Tutta Bella in Columbia City because they let you play with a little ball of pizza dough.
I love all the new French places in town because they usually have good roast chicken and a pretty good plate of steak-frites, my fave. So for roast chicken I go to Cafe Presse and for steak-frites I like Bastille and Chloe Bistrot and Toulouse Petit. My very favorite steak-frites in town is at Betty on the top of Queen Anne Hill. The ribeye was incredibly flavorful and the fries were fantastic.
Okay, so a few places in town specialize in old-fashioned food and I have found some of these to be fantastic. I really like the 5 Spot on top of Queen Anne for comfort food. In Ballard there’s a place called Zayda Buddy’s that has stuff like tater tot casserole. Yes, tater tot casserole. I am waiting for Mom to review a new place near my neighborhood called Easy Joe’s, as apparently it has the same kind of retro menu.
For breakfast I’m all about The Dish Cafe, where they decorate the pancakes into faces using pieces of fruit. Yeah I’m 12 but…c’mon. I’m not made of stone.
So my latest thing is Asian food. I really like sushi because it’s tasty and cute…and I like it best at Blue C Sushi because it comes past your table on a conveyor belt and you just take what you want as it flies by. How cool is that. Anything Thai or Vietnamese is good for me. My latest find is Monkey Bridge in Ballard, which is always crammed with families.
There’s more I’m not thinking of right now, but if you have some to share I’m always looking for new ideas.