Atmosphere: Casual knotty pine, stufed fish and formica.
Price range: from $1.75 hamburger to $11.35 stuffed lobster.
Hours: Noon to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. 1 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sunday. Closed Monday.
Special facilities: Accessible by wheel-chair, high chairs, booster seats, and children's portions at reduced prices. Ample parking.
Credit cards: No credit cards or checks accepted.
There are restaurants that merely tolerate young children. Families who show up with two preschoolers are likely to be seated between the kitchen door and the telephone book.
But Kushner's Seafood Restaurant is much friendlier than that. On a recent visit our children literally had the run of the place and Kushner's couldn't have been nicer about it. The food was good, too.
Kushner's, located in a small shopping center on Piney Branch Road at Flower Avenue in Silver Spring, from the outside is drab and easy to miss. The inside has lots of knotty pine panelling decorated with stuffed fish.
We arrived with two hungry children shortly after 2 on a Sunday Afternoon. A gulf but good-harted waitresses came to our aid right away wih a big basket of deldicious rum buns, rolls and large oyster crackers and butter. Even our one-and-a- half -year-year old son, Dan, stopped banging his spoon and to try some.
For Dan, who likes foods that can dipped into ketchup, we ordered a child-s plate of friend fillet of hdock that came with French fries and so apple sauce for $3.10. His three-on-a-half-year-old sister Susan chose a tuna sandwich on the white bread that cost $2.05.
The sandwich came first . The White tuna ws fresh and made without too much mayonnase. They even cut the crusts off the bread, the way many children like it. But Don't lunch was the greatest success. The fried fish was crisp on the ouside and jury on th inside. He ate with a piece of fish in one hand and a French fry, in the other. It looked so good our daughter helped him eat the generous portion and left half her sandwich.
My husband began his meal with a cup of clam chowder, 70 cents that was thick and full of vegetables. It was rather peppery but he like it. His Baked Crab Imperial for $6.95 was very good, he said, with large pieces of well-flavored crab meat. It was served with cole slaw that tasted fresh and good and with ordinary but acceptable green beans.
Both he and I enjoyed dill pickles from a bowl on the table.
I ordered a broiled combination platter for $7.15. It included two shrimps, several good sized and tender scallops, one-half a lobster tail and two pieces of had-dock fillet. Everything was broiled nicely and served with melted butter. The haddock didn't have much taste. The waitress said it was frozen, not fresh this time of year.
The menu listed frozen eclairs with hot fudge sauce for dessert but the waitress told us only ice cream was available.
"When people finish eating the fish they never want dessert so we stopped carrying it," she explained. But full or not, our daughter wanted ice cream. She and her father shred a dish of vanila and thought it was good. He said his coffee was too weak, though.
The most expansive item on the meny was lobster, stuffed with the crabmeat for $11.35, but crab cakes which seemed to please some nearly diners cost only $5.25. There also want a range of fired and broiled fish plus a list of fisg dishes cooked. Norfolk stayle (in butter). For those who don't like fish, a New York steak is offered for $7.75 and a hamburger at $1.75. There are five childrens plate for those under 10, all costing $3.10, including chopped sirloin. friedn chicken and fried shrimp.
Preparing the broiled fish did take a fari amount of time and while things were cooking, Sue and Dan, escorted by their father, cavorted in an early room and enjoyed climing into the knotty pine phone botthe . No one complained.
Once the food was readt the service was very good. Extra plates and glasses arrived without being aske for, and two waitresses brought sheets of foil and paper bags for leftovers before we'd even asked. A friendly and unbusy bartender gave our daugther as paper fan said used to decorate Polynesia drinks. He carried the fan arond with her the rest of the day.
The bill for the four of us totaleed $22, not much for a good Sunday dinner at a place that seemed happy to have all of us.*