Most restaurants today are child and family friendly but we’ve outlined below a few Manchester restaurants that go that little bit further to keep kids happy when you’re dining out. Whether it’s healthy choices, distraction tactics or just simply a fun interactive dining experience for the little ones we’ve put together a list of our top five family friendly restaurants.
Croma has won the Family Friendly Award in the Manchester Food and Drink Festival more than once and it’s easy to see why. Besides keeping the grown-ups happy with delicious Italian cooking with classic and gourmet pizzas, fantastic seafood and all manner of pasta dishes Croma offers a kids menu known as the Pizzatinis Menu and it’s absolutely adorable. With a selection for pasta and pizza dishes in child friendly portions along with salad or dough balls and dessert then later, your little ones can round off the evening in sophistication by ordering an after dinner Cromaccino (Frothy milk dusted with chocolate). For £5.50 the deal also includes a drink with dinner, an activity book, pencils and stickers for dinner time creativity.
Located in the centre of the city the Hard Rock Café is a well-known brand, now owned by the Seminole Tribe of Florida which seems a far stretch from Manchester but this brand is a lot of fun and serves up some of the biggest portions in Manchester. The Roxstars menu features mains such as the Buddy Jnr Cheese Burger as well as Stylers Off the Hook Fishsticks but also includes healthier ‘Remixes’ like the Kids Salad Chillin’ with Chicken which offers mixed greens and diced chicken Monterey Jack and Cheddar cheeses served with carrot and cucumber sticks and fruit. The Hard Rock offers great value and there’s always great mementos from famous acts to keep your kids attention not to mention all the merch and pin badges for you to add to your very own Hard Rock flare!
Doughs Pizza Kitchen / Italian
What kid doesn’t like pizza? At Dough they are committed to creating a family friendly environment and before 6pm kids don’t just get to eat pizza they get to create it! Kids are given a pre-printed sheet to colour in choosing ingredients off the checklist before the chef recreates their illustrations for them to eat. There’s even good deed in dining here because 50p from every child’s 6” pizza ordered will go to Chect – The childhood eye cancer trust. For kids who prefer pasta there’s that too served with 2 special Dink Dough sticks. Dough also offers vegetarian, gluten free and dairy free options to ensure every member of your family is catered for
Tampopo understands a lot of children’s reticence at the idea of eating anything unusual and so have actually separated their kids menu into three separate sections; Mini Explorer for kids up to 5 years (Chicken Satay, vegetable tempura sticks, cucumber and carrot sticks served with a sweet soy dip) the Junior Explorer for kids 3-8 years (Noodles with chicken, vegetables and sweet soy sauce) and the Adventurous Explorer for kids 7+ (a child’s portion of any of our main dishes) all for £5.50 and under. Tampopo also offers special chopsticks for children to try to get to grips with. For the adults the menu is abundant with street food, soups, curries and everything else you could imagine and if you buy the Vietnamese Pho 50p is donated to MAG, who remove landmines and other explosive weapons in conflict-affected areas around the world including East Asia meaning you can have fun with the family while setting a good example for the kids.
Jamie Oliver has always been very passionate about providing children with healthier meals and believes they should have the same quality food as adults when eating out but as they say you can lead a horse to water…in order to engage children Jamie’s Italian try to make it as interactive and interesting as possible, that’s why the kids menu is visible through an old school 1980’s ‘ViewMaster’ toy and every child’s meal comes complete with a ‘Shake Me Salad’, it’s amazing how much keener children are to eat salad if they’ve had a hand in putting it together. The food on the kids menu ranges from Jamie’s Proper Picnic Box a delicious organic Norfolk chicken wrap with rainbow vegetable crisps, seedless grapes, juicy cherry tomatoes & a piece of seasonal fruit to Jamie’s Happy Chicken Lollipops; freshly made lemony organic chicken fillet lollipops with baked hedgehog potatoes & crunchy seeds each meal also has the nutritional values displayed so you can ensure your child is getting everything they need to be healthy and strong. Obviously there’s plenty for grown-ups to enjoy too!