We almost hate to recommend restaurants we like in this category, because, well, truth be told, we know that most restaurants are perfectly happy to go without the patronage of noisy little cracker crushers. Bad vibes from staff alone have chased us away from several beloved local eateries, at least when we have the full family in tow. But that's what we're talking about, right? Places we want to go without having to hire a babysitter. After all, lowball diners are kid-friendly 'cause the food is mediocre and cheap and no one cares how much noise you make. McDonald's is kid-friendly, OK?
And so we point you to leafy North Baltimore and local staple Donna's--more specifically, the patio. In clement weather, there's probably no more kid-friendly dining spot in town (assuming your kids aren't total terrors) than the broad stone expanse just outside the windows of the restaurant proper. The Donna's menu is its usual sensible chic self, but its kids' menu is surprisingly extensive, with pretty much all the usual suspects on offer, not just a handful. (This being Donna's, the grilled cheese is cut into artful strips, so if your son or daughter must have quarters or whatever, might wanna raise that when ordering.) There are the usual crayons and place mats, but our wee ones just as often chase sparrows around the patio or play with toys we brought, and we're rarely the only ones with kids. When the weather turns cold, well, God help us all.