Eating out

Kids menus. They’re a mixed bag. Goujons, sausages, all that malarkey… But we ate out twice recently – and more importantly successfully from the point of view of decent food & behaviour! – with Dominic. (And Theo, but I’m all that’s on the menu for him right now)

First up, we went to Enoteca Torino in Inchicore. It’s right by a nice playground, so has a captive audience in parents who feel they’ve done a hard weeks work and deserve a wee treat. Or was that just us!? They do a great dinner offer all week, €15.95 for 2 courses & a glass of (delicious) house wine. Say what you like about Mick Wallace, he knows his Italian grub. The kids menu consisted of a few simple pastas (but far more appealing than a cursory pasta with tomato sauce/butter that you usually see on a kids menu) and freshly made pizzas. Any of these would have done but knowing how much Dominic loves risotto, we ordered a small portion of that off the main menu. He gobbled it up for the princely sum of about €5.50, then we let him watch Pingu on an iPhone while we polished off the wine. Hey! We’d done our weeks work remember…

Then another day we needed a quick lunch in town. Wagamama to the rescue! Honestly when Dom was smaller we came here and he ate lots of my Saien Soba ramen which was more interesting than what we ordered for him off the kids menu this time. We ordered a Mini Noodler Meal including grilled chicken noodles. This was a little unadventurous so we may just have chosen poorly but it was all things he liked and it was fun to watch him use his kids chopsticks. Also massive kudos to the waitress who sent us home with several more pairs of them in our pockets. The meal also included a delicious freshly squeezed juice and proper speckled vanilla icecream (which, honestly, me and Mark ate!)

Don’t be scared of eating out with kids, and don’t be afraid to order not from the kids menu if you’d prefer to avoid the usual offerings. I found this link about good children’s menus in Dublin.

The Irish Hotels Federation also publish some guide menus and a template for their members but jaysus, they’re just so samey!

I would love to hear your recommendations on kid-friendly restaurants that do something a little bit different!