We were walking through Chelsea Markets when I spied this …
I am completely unable to pass by pasta. I’m a carboholic and would eat pasta every day if I could. It was midafternoon and prime brunch-time, so we thought we’d peep in and see if they had tables available. The hostess gave us a very warm welcome, especially Cheese, and said they could seat us right away. She helpfully whisked away our stroller to a cute stroller parking area, and we were sat at a table ready for us with a highchair, all while the hostess smiled and chatted with us and the Cheese. So far, total score.
While we waited for our server, we looked around us at the many other families tucking into delicious-looking pasta dishes. Lots of toddlers and small kids shovelling spaghetti bolognese into their mouths, as well as older kids and teenagers, all sharing and enjoying beautiful pasta. Heaven!
We did wait a while for service, but when the server arrived he apologised and explained that it was shift changeover time and he was sorry that we were overlooked as the previous server for our section had just left. After our orders were taken, we thankfully didn’t have to wait very long before our dishes arrived. We ordered a pasta dish each, thinking we would share them with the Cheese. We didn’t count on the pasta dishes being on the small side – Cheese quickly inhaled about half of one dish on her own. She is clearly a carboholic too. She particularly loved the spinach and ricotta girasole dish, and enjoyed crunching down on the parmigiano reggiano basket after the pasta was gone.
After lunch we went for a walk on the waterfront nearby to a small playground. There are options for kids to blow off steam in all weather – the nearby Chelsea Piers has indoor play space, as well as the outdoor playground we discovered and the Chelsea water park on 23rd st for the warmer months.
Stroller storage: Yes – plenty of storage space for full-sized strollers.
Easy access: Yes.
Change tables: No. There is one disabled restroom on the upper level for both men and women, and one restroom down two flights of stairs – not enough restrooms for such a large restaurant. No change table, but plenty of space on the floor if you’re desperate to change a baby.
Kids’ menu: No, but what kid doesn’t love pasta?
Baby-friendly rating: ♥♥♥♥-
Giovanni Rana Pastificio & Cucina
75 9th Ave.
Phone: (212) 370-0975
Brunch Sat-Sun 11am-5pm
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby!