Have kids (and parents), will dine out: Due Amici

When my parents are in town, I like to take them to the places we hang out so they can see what’s happening here in Columbus. They live up in Cleveland and it’s sometimes hard to get them down 71S, but when I do, I try to make the most of it, show them around, take them to cool places so they can remember why I stayed here after college (they think Cleveland is the only C-town in Ohio). Don’t get me wrong, I love Cleveland, but Columbus is home for now.

The easiest way to get them out and about when they are in town, make them feel at home, is to feed them. And since the Columbus food scene is usually a crowd pleaser, I always want to share a glimpse of the great restaurants and eateries we have here when they’re in town. This time we headed down to Due Amici for dinner.  

We walked in and per usual, Rafael had to case the joint, make sure he felt comfortable in his surroundings. The hostess let him do his thing and showed us to the table with a smile. The one thing I can count on at Due Amici is cool music. You hear it pulsing right when you come in the door. There hasn’t been a time when I’ve eaten at Due Amici when there wasn’t something good playing from the speakers. I don’t know who picks the music, but they are usually right on.

Interestingly, Rafael was fixated on blowing out the tea light candles snug in their red glass holders on the tables, but after a few puffs of tiny air, he was over it and ready to nibble on the warm bread just out the oven, double dipping (*sigh*) in the olive oil and black pepper blend.  

With five adults and one busy toddler, our server Carl connected so genuinely, so sweetly with our family. We even got to know a little bit about his family. He was terrific—made us feel at home, and knew just what to do for our 2-year-old. Carl’s timing was perfect. From bringing out a plastic cup with a straw and a lid, to bringing out Rafael’s food right away, to high fives at the end of dinner, we appreciate our server for playing along with celebratory dining and a toddler.

Besides my graduation, it was also my dad’s birthday and he enjoyed the first course: calamari (my mom’s favorite) and the artisan cheeses. And while Alfonso and the baby were busy with the tomato basil soup, Shari, Alfonso and I split a bottle of the Tenuta Curezza, a soft Italian blend, with not too much bite.

Dad was thoroughly pleased with his spicy meatball and pasta as his main course, and when my dad is happy, the rest of us our happy, so I could just stop right there. But the ladies had varied versions of the salmon (which is always good and they serve a nice size of fish), Rafael had a cheese pizza (simple and easy), and Alfonso had a version of the penne carbonara (without the pork).

We had a great time, and even as Rafael got antsy towards the end, somehow those red glowing tea lights kept him entertained just long enough for us to finish our bottle of wine and enjoy each other’s company. Dining out with kids (and parents) is always an experience and an adventure.

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Categories: Misc.

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