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Finding the right restaurant for your family

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ATLANTA -

Sometimes eating out with kids can be a challenge. That's why it's important to pick a restaurant that serves food your family likes, keeps them entertained, and most importantly, is affordable.

That's why Roxie Williams and her family have dined at the Mellow Mushroom for years.

"The price was really reasonable especially for the quality of food you get," said Roxie Williams.

Ira Genser and his seven year old daughter Hannah are also regulars. "When the kids are happy it makes it much easier on the parents and their parents can enjoy their meal out with their kids," said Genser.

Thousands of other people agree, according to the 2012 Zagat restaurant guide.

Customers call the Mellow Mushroom "psychedelic," "funky," "family-friendly," and "fairly priced." Guide creator Tim Zagat lists Mellow Mushroom as one of the best family values in metro Atlanta based on reviews from real customers.

 "Thousands of people with children are participating in these surveys and they're [going to] say ‘I love to take my kids there, I can draw on the tablecloth, the kids have a wonderful menu, the waiter is so nice [to] my child [who] leaves feeling happy. These are the kinds of things real people say about real kinds of experiences," said Tim Zagat.

Mellow Mushroom has more than 20 locations all over metro Atlanta and North Georgia.

Other restaurants rated by Zagat as the best family values include Carrabba's Italian Grill, Tarahumata Mexican Grill, and Shorty's Pizza.

Carrabba's has seven locations around metro Atlanta. Reviewers say it has "personable" service with "reasonable" costs and a "family-friendly" atmosphere.

Customers say Tarahumata Mexican Grill in Roswell and Alpharetta has "authentic" food and is "family-friendly" and "outstanding."

Customer say Shorty's in Decatur and Tucker has "excellent" service and "family-friendly" vibes. The Tucker location owner, Brian Hogan, says all that and the affordable price tag make it a hit with families.

"We have a big patio on the side with large picnic tables. Soccer teams and baseball teams come after the games," said Hogan.

Wherever you decide to take your family, the man who's made eating out his life's work has some suggestions to keep the tab low.

"Don't go for the steaks when you're taking a four year old out because steaks cost more. Also, don't order a full meal for each of them. Order half portions or order off the children's menu," said Zagat.

Links:

http://www.zagat.com/

http://www.mellowmushroom.com/

http://shortys-pizza.com/

http://www.carrabbas.com/

http://www.tarahumata.com/

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