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The vast majority of restaurants in Boston are happy to accommodate kids with simplified dishes and an out-of-the-way booth. Here are some particularly family-friendly options.
Charley's Saloon. Saloons may be no place for kids, but this is no real saloon. Charley's doles out American classics (cheeseburgers, steaks, and apple pies) in a fun retro setting. The chain fare is dependable and above average, and the kids get to color and people-watch. 284 Newbury St., Back Bay, Boston, MA, 02115. 617/266-3000.
Full Moon. Kids will delight in the play kitchen and dollhouse, and parents can cheer that they get to tuck into lovelies such as grilled salmon with sautéed spinach. Meanwhile there's plenty of macaroni and cheese or quesadillas for the young ones. 344 Huron Ave., Cambridge, MA, 02138. 617/354-6699.
Joe's American Bar & Grill. Even with a classy Newbury Street address, Joe's offers oversize burgers and a slice of apple pie alongside a frenzied July 4-style decor. The clam chowder is almost always a hit with all generations. 181 Newbury St., Back Bay, Boston, MA, 02116. 617/536-4200.
Mr. Bartley's Burger Cottage. Maybe it's the frappés (thick milk shakes), silly cartoons all over the walls, or just the fun, high-energy vibe. Whatever it is, Bartley's is a hit with kids. 1246 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA, 02138. 617/354-6559. Closed Sun.
Pizzeria Regina. This North End favorite offers kid-pleasing thin-crust slices that just might be the best pie in town. 11-1/2 Thatcher St., North End, Boston, MA, 02113. 617/227-0765. www.pizzeriaregina.com.
Stephanie's on Newbury. Here's comfort food at its best—sophisticated enough for parents, simple enough for kids. The place is pretty but homey, and has plenty of booths for spreading out in. 190 Newbury St., Back Bay, Boston, MA, 02116. 617/236-0990. www.stephaniesonnewbury.com.
Summer Shack. Boston überchef Jasper White has given New England seafood an urban tweak in his laid-back, loud, and fun spot next to the Prudential Center. The colors are bright, and the entire affair is like one big indoor clambake. 50 Dalton St., Back Bay, Boston, MA, 02115. 617/867-9955. www.summershackrestaurant.com.
Sweet Cupcakes. This old-fashioned, pink-and-brown Back Bay shop serving cupcakes topped with buttercream frosting is an 8-year-old girl's dream; frazzled parents can get a much-needed sugar jolt from the cappuccino and dark chocolate cake flavors. Check out the other outposts on Newbury Street and Harvard Square. 49 Massachusetts Ave., Back Bay, Boston, MA, 02115. 617/247-2253. www.sweetcupcakes.com. Zero Brattle St., Harvard Sq., Cambridge, 02138. 617/547-2253. 225 Newbury St., 02115. 617/267-2253.
Zaftigs. Fill up on huge plates of deli fixings such as matzo-ball soup, first-rate knishes, and heaping plates of grilled chicken, thick-cut onion rings, and three-cheese macaroni. Families cram the place regularly, so servers are used to kids' requests. 335 Harvard St., Brookline, MA, 02446. 617/975-0075. www.zaftigs.com.
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