The next time you are yearning for a white table cloth meal, but a babysitter is out of the question, pack up your progeny and head to Lidia’s in the Crossroads. Lidia’s is an anomaly, a special occasion restaurant where you don’t have to hide your children under the crisp white linens. Solicitous and knowledgeable wait staff – check. An adventurous menu and extensive wine list – check. Dramatic architecture and romantic ambiance – check. Children welcome – check.
Helmed by celebrity chef Lidia Bastianich (whose cookbooks are prominently displayed by the front door), Lidia’s serves up high quality Italian food in a unique location.
The converted freight house is an impressive space with soaring ceilings and enormous Chihuly style blown glass chandeliers. The bar is especially warm and inviting, with a roaring fireplace and massive glass jars filled with exotic looking pickled ingredients.
In mild weather, sitting on the garden patio inhaling the scent of fragrant herbs, you can imagine yourself supping in Italy.
The interior designers did a wonderful job of creating intimate corners in a cavernous space. However, the sheer size of the room means that the noise level can get quite high. While that may bother a canoodling couple, it is a boon for the parent of a fussy baby (or a preschooler with the iPod turned up full blast!).
The ever changing pasta trio is a fun way to sample several different dishes. My recent pasta trio lunch included a velvety smooth butternut squash and zucchini ravioli; it was divine and could have easily passed for dessert.
Every meal starts with a collection of sweet and savory breads, served with artisan butters. There may be hunks from a rustic ciabatta, petite sugar dusted scones, or slices from a dense fruit and nut loaf.
Tip: Sunday brunch offers a tempting spread and the price includes a regular sized entree. Those with a smaller appetite (or budget) can forgo the entree and fill up at the appetizer and dessert buffets for around $14.
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