It’s undeniable that Italian food is a family-favorite, but when it comes to finding a family-friend Italian restaurant that is more than your average spaghetti-producing chain, sometimes it takes some digging. We’ve uncovered these five family-friendly Italian restaurants in Portland where you can easily bring your kids without having to sacrifice a delicious Italian meal.
Naturally, we had to include a food cart on our list of Italian restaurants that Portland families love! Artigiano, also known as simply The Pasta Wagon, serves all fresh, handmade pasta that will make your taste buds think that you’re at a gourmet restaurant, rather than eating at a picnic table outside with your kids! The Pasta Wagon always keeps a kid-friendly option on their rotating seasonal menu and we recommend keeping a close eye on their Facebook page, where they often announce daily specials that can easily make you change what you had planned for dinner!
4804 SE Woodstalk Boulevard, Portland Or
Tucked in Portland’s unique Sellwood neighborhood, Gino’s is more than just family-friendly, it’s family-STYLE! Being served family-style is perfect when dining out with kids because as we all know, they rarely eat a full meal. This way, you can just serve them a bit from each of the dishes from the table. Let’s talk about the menu – you’re definitely going to want to order Grandma Jean’s Pasta and the Caesar Salad, both are amazing. Gino’s is also a great choice for dining out with a large group, so keep it in mind the next time all the cousins come into town or for a birthday dinner.
8051 SE 13th Avenue, Portland
Judging by the amount of kids and families there are dining at Lucca at dinner time, we’re guessing you already know about this great Italian spot, but in case you haven’t heard, we’re more than happy to share! Lucca has a fantastic kids’ menu (and adult menu too!) and you won’t have to spend the entire meal telling them to speak in six-inch voices because the entire restaurant is filled with families. More bonus points for Lucca – they pull from local farms and their own garden as much as possible for fresh ingredients.
3449 NE 24th Avenue, Portland
Mama Mia Trattoria
Mama Mia! Another wonderfully family-friendly Italian restaurant in Portland is the Mama Mia Trattoria or, as it’s known to its regulars, just Mama Mia’s. If you ask Portland kids what they love about Mama Mia’s, they’ll probably tell you three things – the yummy breadsticks they bring you when you sit down at your table, that you can color while you wait, and the chicken fingers on the kids’ menu. Parents love that everything at Mama Mia’s is made from scratch, and that the food comes quickly!
439 SW Second Avenue, Portland
An Italian restaurant with a James Beard Award finalist chef that is also kid-friendly? Is this a dream? Yes, Portland parents, it’s true. Nostrana is one of Portland’s most spectacular Italian restaurants with a season-inspired menu that will make your mouth water. There is no specific children’s menu at Nostana, but they serve amazing, wood-fired pizzas that keep most kids pretty happy while you indulge. Don’t forget to pre-order the crisp for dessert – it takes a while to make and everyone in your family will want a bite!
1401 SE Morrison Street, Portland
— Katie Kavulla