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Baby-on-Board: Updates

By Elizabeth Shapiro in Miscellaneous on Jan 10, 2008 7:51PM

Baby-on-Board is a few weeks away from its one year anniversary at Chicagoist. Many months ago, we first set the criteria for a baby-friendly restaurant as one that boasted “clean high chairs, a place to stow your car seat, attentive service, and food good enough“. While all that is still true, dining out with our toddler has morphed our dining experiences into something resembling a cross between a Joey Chestnut exhibition and a clown bit. We took this opportunity to look back at the restaurants we’ve reviewed to add a couple of tidbits that may interest the toddler-toting parent.

2008_01_BabyonBoard.jpgOur biggest gripe about M. Henry was the delay for your food (or, if you slept in, a table). We’ve been hesitant to visit again; even with some of the tastiest breakfast on the north side, our kid would not be up for a half hour of sitting quietly. We recently caved and were served by a very attentive waiter who brought our kid a mini fruit plate as soon as we ordered. This toddler-friendly amuse bouche was just the thing to tide our kid over until our food arrived.

Even though our kid would happily eat their macaroni and cheese daily, J. Alexander’s does, indeed, have a kids’ menu. You won’t find it printed, but your server can tell you that it includes the staples: plain pasta, chicken fingers, hamburgers and a petite prime rib for those youngins with discriminating palates.

Although we glossed over it before, the kids menu at Uncle Julio’s Hacienda is now one of our favorites. The small plate of fajitas are heaping with corn, rice, and meat so tender that you don’t need to hack it into bits with your knife before giving it to your hungry child. With kids at almost every table during a recent early dinner visit, our kid was busy chatting up the girl in the next highchair, even after his meal was finished.

This recent temperature surge had us craving Scooters frozen custard again. Although we’ve heard rumors that some restaurants in the city do continue to serve their tasty goodness, the rest of us will have to wait: the Lakeview shop reopens for the season in March.