THE BRIDGES DUMBO: 66 Water Street, Brooklyn NY
It was a Sunday and it was the first weekend of March Madness. My request to have brunch at a TV-free venue was not going over well. And then all of a sudden I realized I did sound crazy and really, really not fun. So I immediately switched gears and went into a "lets do this properly" mode. Give me a place with LOTS of screens and lots of fried food on the menu. We had friends in DUMBO (Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass) who were already watching the games at The Bridges. Since we were already playing outside at Brooklyn Bridge Park, it was an easy 10 minute stroll to the place. Here is our review:
How disruptive will my kids be?
Your kids will not be disruptive (well maybe to YOU...but we're talking in terms of OTHERS) Genuinely. It is a rare treat to go to a place that has this much space. It is huge. Huge from NY standards at least and there are TVs everywhere but it doesn't seem like you're sitting in a sports bar. The bar area is separated from the eating area so it all feels just a touch civilized. But the place is loud enough that if your kids screams or jumps around, no one will notice. And THAT is a beautiful thing. Keep in mind, we came on a Sunday afternoon in between basketball games, but the daddies who were there before us had arrived during peak crowds and they said it was fantastic for the kids. We scored a corner booth area and we white flagged it hard. There was plenty of room for all the kids to get out of the booth, walk around and run up and down a ramp that led up to our area. If there were more people in our section, I might not have let Jenson roam as much, but that wasn't the case when we were there. It was truly a dream spot to kick back and have some beers and wings, but also know your kid will not be accumulating any voodoo spells from the other patrons.
Does the restaurant cater to kids in any way?
Yes. Kids under eight eat free brunch on the weekends. Wait..what? Yes, you read that correctly. FREE. Why doesn't every restaurant do this? There is nothing more maddening than paying too much for pancakes to have your toddler take two bites of it. We ordered chocolate chip pancakes and they were good. So good, I had to continually remind myself that I already inhaled a falafel wrap about 30 minutes prior and this was lunch....for MY SON. There is a kid menu with your standard kid fare. Read: nuggets, burgers, fries, noodles, etc.
There are changing stations in the bathrooms downstairs. Highchairs are provided, but no booster chairs. They have crayons and coloring books for kids and there is art everywhere. So distraction levels are really high.
Can I bring a stroller into the restaurant?
Yes. I imagine if it was super packed, they might ask you to fold it down, but I saw a few strollers unfolded the day we were there.
How early does the restaurant start serving dinner?
The place opens at noon and dinner menu begins at 5PM. Kid menu is served all day.
Are there food options for allergic kids?
Not officially. The server told me if anyone has any allergies or sensitivities they would try to accommodate as best they could.
Why? This place almost checks off everything. I'm not giving it the full 5 bites because they don't have booster seats and there isn't a whole lot to eat if your child is gluten-sensitive or has a peanut allergy. And while I give this place props for having kid menu, it's a tad unimaginative. We need to stop feeding into this philosophy that our kids palate should only rise as high as nuggets and buttered noodles. But overall, The Bridges is a GREAT place to hang out with friends and bring your kids along. We will definitely be going back.
Missed the post about how we got to this review system? READ HERE for the full explanation!