Monday, February 14, 2011

6 good places to eat out with kids in Vancouver

Vancouver is an amazing city for food. There are cuisines from all over the world, and the quality is very high over-all. Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Thai, seafood, pasta, burgers... there are excellent restaurants featuring all these types of food in and around Vancouver.

My choices here are rather non-adventurous. They are places that are child-friendly (meaning no one is going to give you the side-eye for bringing kids along), have good kids' menus, and also have good food for adults. There are lots of other places to check out as well in and around Vancouver, but these are some really sure bets if you're looking for a place to eat out as a family.

1. White Spot
White Spot is a great place for an easy-going, sit-down family. There is lots of great stuff on the menu, including burgers, shakes, and a good selection of kids' meals. Kids' meals are served as Pirate Paks, meaning the food comes in a cardboard pirate ship that the kids can bring home if they like. The kids' menu includes fish and chips, burgers, grilled cheese sandwiches, and salad. My children almost always go for the macaroni and cheese. A scoop of ice cream is included in all the kids' meals.

White Spot also does good breakfasts, and have some nice beers on tap for parents.

2. Boston Pizza
Boston Pizza is another easy-going restaurant chain with lots of locations around Vancouver. The kids' menu includes chicken fingers, spaghetti and sauce (served on the side, just like my kids like it), small-sized pizza, and lots of other dishes. There is also a nice selection of side-dishes, including steamed veggies, which is what my children usually pick. Their main course choice is always, always, always the bugs and cheese: special buggy pasta shapes with tasty sauce. My daughter is obsessed with this dish!

A nice selection of grown-up foods and drinks here too.

3. Dennys
My family loves to go to Denny's for breakfast. The kids devour their pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon... you get the picture. Nothing fancy about the food here, but it's good and the portions are biiig. Nice and simple kids' food on the menu here, whether it's for breakfast, lunch or dinner: quesadillas, burgers, chicken nuggets and more. They also have a nice selection of side-dishes for kids, including simple fare like grapes, veggies and dip, apple sauce, apple slices, mashed potatoes and other kid-friendly things.

4. Ricky's Restaurant
Ricky's is another chain of restaurants with locations all over the Vancouver area, and they have an excellent kids' menu. Burgers, fish and chips, chicken strips, pizza, quesadillas, grilled cheese sandwiches, spaghetti... and more. They also serve smoothies and ice cream floats. 

5. The Keg
The Keg is a great place to go for a nice steak. Their bacon-wrapped filet mignon is one of my favorite meat-dishes, especially the version with some blue cheese on top... divine (trying not to drool here). And their calamari starter is amazing: even my kids love it. The Keg is nice and cozy for adults for a nice dinner out without kids, but they also have a good kids' menu that includes roast chicken, mini burgers, and even sirloin steak for kids. Kids' meals include a nice veggie platter that usually keeps my kids busy for a while.

6. The Salmon House on the Hill
The Salmon House in West Vancouver, located way up on the mountain side, is a rather fancy place to go for dinner. To clarify to non-Vancouverites: it's not suit-and-tie kind of fancy, but then very few restaurants are suit-and-tie fancy in Vancouver. However, the food, the prices, the service, and the wine-list are definitely upscale. The seafood on the menu here is just amazing, and they are also quite welcoming to families with kids. Every time I've been there, there have been several families with children of all ages seated at the tables.

There is no set kids' menu, but when we've been there they've offered salmon, prawns, chicken fingers with fries, and a couple of pasta dishes in kids' sized portions. And the fresh-baked bread that comes before the meal usually turns on the feeding frenzy with both my kids. It's a good place for a fancy dinner out with the kids, but it is definitely not your usual kids' restaurant. My tip: book a table for 5 pm when dinner service starts. That way you'll be out of there before your kids get too tired and the restaurant gets too busy.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for these suggestions to consider when visiting Vancouver! A great place to eat doesn't necessarily mean that it must be fancy. Sometimes, being simple with great food and service is preferred by families. Have you considered dining in a restaurant within in an inn where you can also visit an art gallery?

    Lester Jackson @ Bee And Thistle Inn Restaurant


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