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Best Kid-Friendly Restaurant

SCHILLER’S LIQUOR BAR
131 Rivington St.
212-260-4555; schillersny.com

Traditionally, parents dining out are presented with the Hobson’s choice of paying a babysitter an extra $100 in order to eat well or taking the kids along to experience mediocre food. Now there’s another option, in the most unlikely place: the Lower East Side. New fatherhood must have softened Schiller’s owner Keith McNally: “We love when the kids are here,” he enthuses, and to prove it, the restaurant gives preschoolers a homemade doughnut, kids under 5 get dessert at no cost, and regular toddlers are greeted by name. A prix fixe kids’ menu starts this month, and bringing your own child-friendly food is perfectly acceptable. There’s no need to worry that something will get broken: Heavy wooden tables are filled with dings, and the dark metal chairs look better with scuffs. Adds Schiller’s staffer Paula Shapiro, “It’s like a dating scene here for toddlers. It’s the cutest thing.”

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