Advice

Ask the Editor: Can I Bring My Kid to the Bar?

Well, it depends ...


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Babysitters are too expensive. Can I just bring my kid with me to the bar?

—Elena in Mt. Airy

Philly Mag food editor Alex Tewfik

My third-grade teacher would answer your question with a question: “I don’t know, can you?” And she’d be right, because the question should really be “May I bring my kid to the bar?” — and in that tweak is where you’ll find your answer.

Except in establishments with specific policies against underage patrons (they’ll card you right away), things can get tricky. This city really likes gastropubs and beer gardens, which feel family-oriented. Even our upscale restaurants have a willingness to whip up a bowl of (house-made) buttered noodles.

But if you’re at a bar and the sun is down, it’s a judgment call. Read the room. If the staff is excited to see your cute kid, that’s a good sign. If you’re seeing eye-rolls, maybe it’s time to book a babysitter.