Home
About Us
Services, Products & Events
Geoffrey Gish Memorial Fund
Gish Picks
Family Resources
Art
Cool Community Calendars
The Summer Book
Press
Clients
Contact Us

FAMILY FRIENDLY RESTAURANTS

Ah, now that we have children, we still want to eat out, but how??? Fast-food chains like McDonald’s were the first to latch on to the idea that parents wanted places where their kids could play AND eat, but luckily we can now augment those visits with many more quality restaurants (see our list below for the Houston area). Like arts organizations, restaurants have gotten smart to the fact that so many people are having children now – and they want to take their darlings with them wherever they can. There are 11,000 restaurants in Houston, so it’s a numbers game – with the high number of restaurants, we have a high number of kid-friendly ones. And I think more customers are understanding of families in restaurants, knowing that so many of us just really want to enjoy time out with our children. With the high price of babysitters, sometimes it’s cheaper just to go out to dinner ensemble!

When we’re with our boys, I like restaurants with amenities like open spaces for them to play in when ancy, nice outdoor patios, fenced-in play areas, or playground equipment, as well as goodies for them, like crayons, puzzles, word searches, etc. Family-friendly restaurants are ones with a welcoming staff towards you AND your children (they don’t make faces when you walk in with a brood!) with customers who are also amenable to families. We recently had a lovely meal with a friend’s child and her parents at a traditionally “adult” restaurant – but she was welcomed (and well-behaved), so we all had a good time. I have found that most Mexican and Chinese restaurants are family-friendly, especially the roomier ones, as are fast food restaurants with play places and restaurants in food courts at malls.

Restaurants that have either an older clientele (which, unfortunately can often mean “grumpy around children”) or restaurants that tend to be quiet, intimate places are more difficult for families, especially ones with younger children. We had an incident at a pizza place where all the kids were running around having a good time (and, yes, maybe getting a bit too wild, but we didn’t think it was out of hand) and an older patron came up to us and said “It’s called parenting.” Whew, did we feel unwelcome after that! And I had a horrible time with my then-two year old in a fancy restaurant when he had a major melt-down while we were on the second level – and I had to cart him through the entire restaurant and down the stairs with people staring and him crying for what seemed like an eternity. It was at that point that I realized I needed to take my children only to restaurants that were appropriate for them. Fancy restaurants are not for younger children, although they are great practice for older children that can sit still and who will get a lot out of trying different foods, learning about silverware and manners, and having mature conversation.

TIPS FOR EATING OUT WITH KIDS

Here are some tips for eating out with kids:

• bring your own activities for children that will keep them occupied, such as coloring books, smaller board games, action figures – whatever the kids are into
• go to restaurants during non-peak hours and take more than one table -- the kids can be at one table with all their activities and the adults at another, conversing!
• prepare the kids before going into a restaurant to remind them to keep their manners
• get your kids to start thinking in advance about what they might want to eat at this particular restaurant, so that they’re not starving while trying to decide (many restaurants have menus online)
• order appetizers so that some food can come early for the hungrier ones in the bunch
• eat at non-peak hours so that there’s less excitement, less of a wait, less people to stare at your kids, and your food will come quicker
• if you have a picky eater, you might want to check the menu before you go – in fact, not all “family-friendly” restaurants have a kids’ menu, so keep that in mind.

OUR PARTIAL LIST OF FAMILY FRIENDLY RESTAURANTS

Please email us if you visit a restaurant we should add, or if you were not welcome with kids at any of these restaurants.

100% Taquito
www.100taquito.com
3245 Southwest Freeway
Houston, Texas 77027-7503
713.665.2900

Avalon Diner
www.avalondiner.com
2417 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, Texas 77098
713.527.8900
Barnaby's Café
www.barnabyscafe.com
4 Houston area locations
Beck’s Prime
www.becksprime.com
7 Houston area locations

Benihana
www.benihana.com
9707 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, Texas 77042
713.789.4962

Berryhill Baja Grill
www.berryhillbajagrill.com
9 Houston area locations

The Buffalo Grille
www.thebuffalogrille.com
3116 Bissonnet
Houston, Texas 77005
713.661.3663

Café Express
www.cafe-express.com
12 Houston area locations
Café Japon
www.cafejapon.com
3915 Kirby Dr.
Houston, Texas 77098
713.529.1668
Carrabba’s Italian Grill
www.carrabbas.com
9 Houston area locations
Casa Olé
www.casaole.com
19 Houston area locations
Chacho's
www.chachos.com
6006 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, Texas 77057
713.975.9699
Chuy's
www.chuys.com
4 Houston area locations
Cici's Pizza
www.cicispizza.com
39 Houston area locations
Collina’s
www.collinas.com
3 Houston locations
Daily Review Café
www.dailyreviewcafe.com
3412 W. Lamar
Houston, Texas 77019
713.520.9217
D'Amico Italian Market Café
www.damico-cafe.com
5510 Morningside
Houston, Texas 77005
713.526.3400
Dave and Buster’s
www.daveandbusters.com
6010 Richmond
Houston, Texas 77057
713.952.2233
Downtown Aquarium
www.aquariumrestaurants.com
410 Bagby St.
Houston, Texas 77002
713.223.3474
Dry Creek Café
www.drycreekcafe.com/home.html
544 Yale St.
Houston, Texas 77007
713.426.2313
Fuddrucker's
www.fuddruckers.com
8 Houston locations
Goode Co. Hamburgers, Seafood, Taqueria
www.goodecompany.com
5 Houston locations
Hard Rock Café
www.hardrock.com
502 Texas Ave.
Houston, Texas 77002
713.227.1392
Incredible Pizza Company
www.incrediblepizza.com
3 locations in Sugar Land, Conroe, and Houston
Jason's Deli
www.jasonsdeli.com
19 Houston area locations
Jax Grill
www.jaxgrillhouston.com
2 Houston area locations
Joe’s Crab Shack
www.joescrabshack.com
10 Houston area locations
Kenny and Ziggy Delicatessen
www.kennyandziggys.com
2327 Post Oak Blvd.
Houston, Texas 77057
713.871.8883
Le Peep Restaurants
www.lepeephouston.com
5 Houston area locations
Los Cucos
www.loscucos.com
7 Houston area locations
Los Tios - Skeeters
www.skeetersgrill.com
9527 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, Texas 77063
713.784.0380
Luby’s Cafeterias
www.lubys.com
34 Houston area locations
Lupe Tortilla
www.lupetortillas.com
3 Houston locations
Mama's Café
www.mamascafe.net
6019 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, Texas 77057
713.266.8514
Mission Burritos
www.missionburritos.com
2 Houston locations
Ninfa's Mexican Restaurants
www.mamaninfas.com
15 Houston area locations
Nippon Japanese Restaurant
4464 Montrose Blvd.
Houston, Texas 77006
713.523.3939
Nit Noi Thai Restaurants
www.nitnoithai.com
7 Houston area locations
Onion Creek Café
www.onioncreekcafe.com
3106 White Oak Dr.
Houston, Texas 77007
713.880.0706
Pappa's Burger
www.pappasburger.com
5815 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, TX 77057
713.975.6082
Pappy's Restaurant
www.pappyscafe.com
9041 Katy Freeway
Houston, TX 77024
713.827.1811
Prince’s Hamburgers
www.princeshamburgers.com
3 Houston area locations
Putt-Putt Funhouse
www.puttputtfunhouse.com
806 E. Nasa Road 1
Webster, Texas 77598
281.333.0579
Qin Dynasty
www.qindynasty.biz
5115 Buffalo Speedway
Houston, Texas 77005
713.660.8386
Red Robin
www.redrobin.com
4 Houston locations
Romano's Pizza Italian Restaurant
www.romanoshouston.com
1528 W. Gray
Houston, Texas 77019
713.526.1182
Skeeter’s
www.skeetersgrill.com
5529 Weslayan Dr.
Houston, Texas 77005
713.660.7090
Star Pizza
www.starpizza.net
2 Houston area locations
Sweet Mesquite
www.sweetmesquitehouston.com
7 Houston area locations
Sweet Tomatoes
www.sweettomatoes.com
4 Houston area locations
Taco Cabana
www.tacocabana.com
5 Houston area locations