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Family Restaurants in London
The best family-friendly restaurants are more than colouring books, a kid’s menu, and toddler-friendly music. They have a friendly staff that anticipates a family’s needs, a wide variety of activities to keep children busy, a fun theme, and periodic specials to keep you coming back for more. The following chains were not only able to get it right once, but are so successful in their family-friendly appeal that they’ve replicated it into several popular chain stores.
The Loco Mexicano restaurant in Westbourne Grove
If you are in the mood for quality Mexican food the whole family can enjoy, look no further than the Loco Mexicano restaurant in Westbourne Grove, in Bayswater, London. Part of the larger chain, the Loco Mexicano has a friendly staff who get in the Mexican spirit by wearing sombreros that are also provided for diners as well. It’s a great place for children’s birthday parties, private functions, and other events. The bar and extensive drink menu make the restaurant a great place for adults, while still being safe for families with young children too.
In terms of food, expect the typical mix of authentic and Tex Mex quality Mexican food. Look out for promotional kid’s meal specials for discounted pricing. Enjoy appetisers such as a beef chilli sampler (£3.75), and chorizo and olive nachos (£5.95), as well as tapas items the peri-peri chicken skewer with pineapple salsa (£4.95).
The main courses are the usual suspects: Fajitas, Tortilla & Salsa, Gaucho Steaks, Basket Salads, BBQ’s, and Loco Burgers. Watch out for the rotating seafood menu that changes weekly. Fajitas come in several flavours/toppings such as chicken, king prawn, and vegetarian fajitas, starting at £9.95 and go up to £12.95. Gaucho Steaks are served with house fries, salad, and criolla mustard dip, and start at £11.95 and go up to £12.95. Basket Salads range from £8.50 to £13.95, and the Loco Burgers, which come with fries, salad, and coleslaw, start at £7.95 and go to £8.95, with a few options such as the Peri-Peri Chicken Fillet Burger, the Mexican Chilli Burger, or the Smoked BBQ Burger.
Yog Frozen Yogurt
Yog brings the frozen yoghurt craze to the UK, with its pro-biotic yoghurt made from 100 percent fresh organic British skim milk. The chain was founded by Rebecca McGuire and Es Salih, and prides itself on using fresh, organic milk, not powdered milk like many American stores. As if to prove their authenticity, the Charlotte Street Yog store even has a ‘Cow Cam’ where customers may watch the live cows on the dairy farm the store partners with.
Even the flavours and toppings are as health as you can get, with no preservatives, artificial flavours, or colours added. Choose from traditional toppings such as strawberries, blueberries, marshmallows, mini-Oreos, and honey. Or go for more exotic choices such as goji berries and seeds, as well as seasonal toppings such as hot Bramley apple and Christmas pudding. The frozen yoghurt itself is available in several flavours: Natural, POM pomegranate, Cinnamon, Dark Chocolate, and Passion Fruit.
This family-friendly restaurant is another popular British chain, catered specifically to a family client base. All stores have a wide layout, great for strollers and energetic toddlers. There are plenty of high chairs and kiddie extras such as crayons, books, paper place mats, and balloons as well. This popular chain can get really busy during peak hours (much like popular U.S. chains such as Chucky E. Cheese’s).
Kid’s meals cost about £4, from burgers and falafel, to Spicy Thai Prawns, pizza, and chicken strips as well. The menu has helpful suggestions broken down by age and priced accordingly too, which makes ordering for picky eaters a breeze.
There’s a larger breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu with options the entire family can enjoy. Food choices draw from international influences, from appetisers like edamame (£4.75) and Nachos Nirvana (starting at £6.95), to burgers and sandwiches, burritos, BBQ Baby Back Ribs (£8.50), Bahmi Goreng “Indonesian Style Noodles” (£8.95), and salad options.
Adults can also enjoy cocktails that cost between £6 to £7, in addition to beer, cider, smoothies, soft drinks, and coffee and tea. There’s even a “Bar Buddies” happy hour where all drinks are 50 percent off weekdays 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Sundays 6 p.m. to close.