Family Dining Philadelphia

The reasons for taking your family to Philadelphia for a vacation are numerous. Simply put, it’s a great place to for a family vacation whether you’re looking for fun, excitement or an educational experience. The only problem with family vacations in a new city, any new city, is finding family dining options that are both welcoming of your family and nutritious. Below you’ll find a list of some family dining options in Philadelphia that should take off some of your stress and make everyone happy at meal times.

Maggiano’s Little Italy

Almost every kid loves spaghetti and it’s chock full of healthy ingredients so Maggiano’s Little Italy is the perfect place to take your family for dinner. Maggiano’s serves quality Italian-American fare so you’re not stuck with spaghetti if your tastes are a little more exotic and something along the lines of Tuscan mussels sounds more appealing. Even though Maggiano’s serves up some of the best tasting Italian meals, the atmosphere is more conducive to family dining than fine dining. Red checkered table cloths greet you and the friendly staff makes you feel welcome. If Maggiano’s feels familiar it’s because it is a chain restaurant and slowly expanding across the globe.

Winnie’s LeBus Manayunk

Home cooking done right is what you’ll get at Winnie’s LeBus Manayunk. There is simply nothing better than some home cooked comfort food when you’re on vacation, especially if you don’t have to do the cooking. Winnie’s is a consistent local favorite garnering many accolades and honors and all of them are well deserved. Housed in a renovated old mill, this restaurant is comfortably charming and a bit out of the norm, which is exciting for little ones. The great circular bar in the center of the dining room is exciting for bigger ones as it can help take the edge off a long day of sightseeing. Winnie’s isn’t just for dinner so keep this destination in mind whenever your tribe gets hungry.

Marathon on the Square

Marathon on the Square offers a standard fare which is served in a pseudo-euro diner. The food is suitable and so is the atmosphere. Not the best restaurant in town, but totally accepting of families and conveniently located. Marathon on the Square also has convenient hours and an all day breakfast menu so there’s a large variety of selections that will leave everyone satisfied.

Farmicia Food and Tonics

Farmicia Food and Tonics is, in one word, fresh. If you’re looking to experience the city of Philadelphia fully then a visit to this restaurant is a great way to get in on the local cuisine. Ingredients are fresh, local and creatively prepared. Farmicia is based on the owner’s concept that food should be simply crafted yet delicious and they accomplish this by focusing on local organic and artisan producers. The atmosphere is relaxed and thus welcoming to younger diners. If you’re stopping by for a snack or a breakfast pastry the front of Farmicia houses Metropolitan Café which is a great place to stop for a delicious fresh baked local treat.

Ralph’s Italian Restaurant

Philly is known for its great Italian food, so expect to see more than your fair share of Italian inspired restaurants, but most of them cannot boast the history that Ralph’s Italian Restaurant can with more than 100 years under its belt. In 1893 Francesco and Catherine Dispigno arrived at Ellis Island with their three year old in tow. By 1900 they had saved up just enough to rent a building and open their first restaurant. Since then the incredible traditional recipes at Ralph’s has drawn celebrities including Theodore Roosevelt, Frank Sinatra, Jimmy Durante, Lena Horne, Tony Bennett, Heather Locklear and many, many others.  The food is simply wonderful, based on traditional family restaurants and with a century of satisfied diners backing them up, Ralph’s is bound to please everyone in the family.

Honey’s Sit ‘n Eat

Honey’s Sit ‘n Eat is a cozy rustic little diner that makes your family feel right at home but introduces them to some cuisine that they may not be too familiar with. It’s the best way to experiment with some Jewish and Southern comfort foods. But don’t feel trapped into trying something unusual or different, there are plenty of old standbys on the menu too. Style, charm and great food are Honey’s staples, but the word is out and this restaurant can be very busy, i.e. there may be a line outside waiting for a table so if you’re in a hurry then this may not be the place for you and your crew.

Pietro’s Coal Oven Pizzeria

Everyone loves pizza and everyone loves Pietro’s Coal Oven Pizzeria. This can be your hold out restaurant option that you can pull out to reward good behavior or brighten tired spirits. Pietro’s is a little classier than your standard pizzeria but the pizza is also better as quality ingredients are the mantra. Fresh and delicious, each ingredient is carefully selected and then fired in a coal oven to give you a delightfully crisp crust. If you haven’t had enough pasta, there is also a healthy list of homemade pasta entrees and some of the best desserts all around. Pietro’s is a treat for everyone in the family and will leave you wishing you could eat here again and again.

Dave & Buster’s

So if the pizza restaurant doesn’t work as a bribe or a treat for your kids then this chain restaurant definitely will. Dave & Busters is more about fun than food but who cares when there is so much fun to be had. Gigantic game rooms are stacked with a variety of games for all age groups and skills. You can easily fill hours with games and activities that will keep your kids smiling and wear them out. And you can grab a cocktail and unwind in your own way, whether your idea of relaxing is sitting back and watching the fun or joining in and playing along. As far as the food, Dave and Buster’s has a lot of variety and if you choose carefully you can find good, healthy choices for everyone.

Creative Commons Licensephoto credit: Flickr/Clotee Pridgen Allochuku