When our little girl was born last May we still wanted to enjoy the great food scene here in Asheville without finding a baby sitter.  Our first forays into the restaurant scene were to find outdoor spaces where we could enjoy a cold local beverage with our newborn in tow.  Now that she’s closer to toddler-hood, dining out with our little one has changed.  Periodically I’ll post reviews and rate local “adult” restaurants on food, beverage selection and kid-friendliness.

Granted, our ability to eat out with our baby girl has a lot to do with her temperament.  She’s a happy, easy-going kid who is easy to redirect as long as mama has remembered to pack a few surprises.  We’re also more into baby-wearing than slogging around car seats and strollers which makes it easier to fit in restaurants with tight spaces.  Most of the time we eat out as a family of three, but every once in a while just baby girl and I head out on our own.

Eating out Essentials

  • Mid-afternoon is the best time of day to dine out with a kidlet in tow.  Lunch rush is over, dinner rush has yet to begin.


  • Comfy baby carrier.  My favorite was a stretchy wrap (like a Moby), my husband’s was the Ergo with the newborn insert.

Older Infant:

  • Comfy baby carrier that I can nurse in.  I joined the Ergo fan club when S reached the 15 pound mark.
  • Favorite small toys.  Right now S is into rhythm eggs, Sophie the giraffe, taggie blankets and small board books.
  • High chair cover.  I have two from this Etsy store that are very nicely sewn and machine washable.*
  • Reusable placemat.  We use a Summer Infant Tiny Diner Placemat that is dishwasher safe and rolls up to a very portable size.  The crumb trough is quite nice for catching food, too, which keeps the mess of our tiny diner to a minimum.*

*Not necessarily essentials.  I use them when I’m carrying a bag big enough to store them easily, but if we’re walking around town I carry a much smaller bag and I tell myself I’m helping build her immune system.