DC Restaurants for the Whole Family

Posted by Lowell School on 2/23/17 11:50 AM

Sometimes, the whole family just needs a night out. But where can a family go that will feel like a treat for adults and kids alike? What if some in the family eat vegetarian or gluten free and some crave a big juicy hamburger? Is it possible to make everyone happy?
You might not hit the mark every time, but here are some restaurants in the DC metro area that Lowell families swear by. Is there more than one pizza place on the list? Yes, there are several. Why? Because everyone has their favorite! What’s missing? Most of our families live near the school in NW DC or Montgomery County, so many restaurant choices are located nearby. Do we want more suggestions from around the metro area? You bet! Leave us your family’s favorite restaurant in the comment section.

If you have active kids and worry about wait times at restaurants, don't despair. This article has five suggestions for keeping the under 10 set happy while you wait. So go ahead, have a night out!

Family-Friendly DC Area Restaurants

2Amys Neapolitan Pizza
3715 Macomb Street NW, WDC
It’s such good pizza, and you don’t have to worry about the kids making too much noise because it’s always a little bit on the louder side. House-cured meats, tasty appetizers, salads, and homemade ice cream round out the menu. Buon appetito!
American City Diner
5532 Connecticut Avenue NW, WDC
This is a fun place to take kids and their friends. They have a movie deck where you can watch movie classics as you eat. Due to technical issues, the movie schedule has been suspended, but the diner hopes to start showing movies again by summer.
Amsterdam Falafelshop
Multiple Locations in the Metro Area
It has some of the best falafel in town, and it won’t break the bank. Vegans, vegetarians, and those who are living gluten free will all find toppings to add just the right flair to their sandwich or bowl.
Cactus Cantina
3300 Wisconsin Avenue NW, WDC
“Who doesn’t want to watch tortillas being made? Great food, fun vibe, and a parking lot close by.”

Café Deluxe 
Multiple Locations, Favorite Location: 3228 Wisconsin Avenue
Don’t let the paper on the tables and the crayons that servers bring for kids fool you. This is a grown-up restaurant that happens to have a kids menu. Their mac and cheese is kid approved, and their ceiling fans provide endless entertainment for babies.

Cava Mezze
Multiple Locations in the Metro Area
“What’s not to love? Multiple choices, fun drinks, build-your-own meal. A winner every time with our family.”
China Bistro (Mama’s Dumplings)
755 Hungerford Drive, MD
If you don’t live in or frequent Rockville, this is a reason to go. The dumplings are homemade and come in a dozen flavors. There are other things on the menu, but kids love the dumplings. Service is speedy. Try a weeknight or get there before noon on the weekends for easy parking and your pick of tables.
Multiple Locations in the Metro Area
With a wide array of salad choices and toppings, you are sure to find something green that your child will eat!
Comet Ping Pong
5037 Connecticut Avenue NW, WDC
Some of the best pizza around and ping pong tables—a winning combination.
The Daily Dish
8301 Grubb Road, Silver Spring
A neighborhood go-to spot with adult and kid menus.
923 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring
Why Eggspectation? “They serve breakfast all day long!”
Franklin’s Restaurant, Brewery, and General Store
5123 Baltimore Avenue, Hyattsville
“Franklin’s has a toy/beer/wine store attached to the restaurant, which makes it easier to entertain the kids as you wait for the food.”
Washington, DC, Bethesda
A kid-friendly Mexican restaurant. The Tenleytown location has a great outdoor deck that’s fun for people watching.
Hollywood East
11160 Veirs Mill Road, Wheaton
“We go for dim sum. The kids love the carts going around and helping to select different dishes.”
3512-14 Connecticut Avenue NW, WDC
Indian and American fare with a twist. There is no children’s menu here, but the staff is very welcoming to families. Servers help children find items on the menu they would like to eat.
Kaldi’s Social House
918 Silver Spring Avenue, Silver Spring
“This is more of a coffee shop/lunch spot, but a great hidden gem. Recently renovated with great hot drinks and yummy fries—we are eager to go back to try their rooftop patio.”
Little Coco's
3907 14th St NW, WDC
“They have a great kid's menu with reasonable prices—no $12 bowls of pasta! Their regular dinner and brunch menus have lots of great options of apps, pasta, sandwiches, and pizza. Their beer, wine, and cocktail list is extensive, and you can't go wrong with their desserts made in-house. Finally, their rooftop seating is great on a nice day.”
Mark’s Kitchen
7006 Carroll Avenue, Takoma Park
“Our family likes this restaurant because they have something to please our varied palates—mac and cheese, flavorful vegetarian options, and bento boxes. Dessert is also pleasing to all with giant cookies, milk shakes, and pie!”
Mi Rancho
Silver Spring and Rockville
Tex Mex favorites served in a relaxed but lively atmosphere. Novelty factor: the Silver Spring location has an outdoor heated bubble you can eat inside!
MOD Pizza
909 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring
“A yummy build-your-own pizza shop with great, fresh ingredients. And, you can leave your mark on the wall with a MOD sticker and your name forever remembered on the wall.”
Nando’s Peri-Peri
Multiple Locations in the Metro Area
“We love Nando’s. They have great fire-grilled chicken, as well as vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options. The art on the walls is fantastic, and you can get beer, wine, and/or sangria with your meal.”
Parkway Deli
8317 Grubb Road, Silver Spring
“Wide menu selection and a laid back atmosphere.” It’s a NYC-style deli that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Ask about the pickle bar!
Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza
Multiple Locations in the Metro Area
“Relaxed vibe, lots of great options for meat-eaters or not. Plenty of space to spread out with the family or bring some friends along!”
Pho Hiep Hoa
921 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring
“The menu can be overwhelming, but that just means you try something new every time. Great pho, attentive service, and a fun adventure.”
Pi Pizzeria
Penn Quarter and Bethesda locations
A spacious restaurant with both deep-dish and thin crust pizza, craft beers, and sit-down service.
Politics & Prose Bookstore and Coffee House
5015 Connecticut Avenue NW, WDC
“We love Politics and Prose because you can browse for books and have a bite to eat. Big-enough kiddos can go look at books when they are done eating, and you can actually have an adult conversation. It can get busy, so it’s not a sure thing that you can get a table.”
Tastee Diner
Bethesda and Silver Spring
“We love the Silver Spring Diner for breakfast. Its inexpensive, fast, and yummy.”
Slash Run
201 Upshur St NW, WDC
“Burgers and hotdogs! Owned by the same group as Little Coco's. Fun place with a dive-bar feel and jukebox with a little bit of something for everyone. Great kid's menu and a beer and whisky list that makes the grown-ups happy. They do ask families to depart by 8:00 pm.”
Ted’s Bulletin
1818 14th Street NW, WDC
“Our favorite brunch spot. There might be a wait, but we love the fact that we can walk down 14th and window shop while we wait. We get a text or phone call when our table is ready. And, the food is amazing. Consistently good every time and a retro vibe. Homemade pop tarts for the kids. Adult milkshakes anyone?”
“We love their breakfast. You can't go wrong with the Mr. Happy Pancake and pop tarts. They always have an old movie showing on the screens and bring crayons and an activity sheet for the kids. The portions are huge, and we all leave full.”
Timber Pizza
809 Upshur St NW, WDC
“Delicious pizzas with options for the entire family. They have a huge wood-burning oven that the kids can see and watch the pizzas go in and out. It's easy to grab the pizza to go. And, they'll bring a growler of beer to the table. Super casual, community tables. We have fun when we go.”
Multiple Locations in the Metro Area
75 flavors of milkshakes! Enough said.


DC Restaurant Picks Mapped Out

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Looking for a school for your child?

Lowell School is an independent school in the Colonial Village neighborhood of Washington, DC, that offers Pre-Primary, Primary, and Middle School programs. It offers a rigorous and hands-on curriculum that nurtures each child’s natural curiosity and desire to learn, and supports the development of individual voice and self-reliance. For more information, please call 202-577-2000, email admissions@lowellschool.org, or follow Lowell on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.

Topics: Family Activities

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Written by Lowell School