On celebration of the doors reopening again and hopefully a summer ahead of being able to eating out again more easily, I thought I would share some tried and tested (By a family of four with fussy and sometimes noisy children!) family friendly places we’ve found locally, around Suffolk and North Essex.
Places To Eat out with Children in Sudbury
Huffers Cafe, Sudbury
Keeping it nice and simple to begin with, Huffers, in Sudbury town centre is a lovely family run café, you can always rely on for a quick and nice family lunch out in town. We’ve been going there for years, the food is consistently good, there’s a huge choice and the staff are really friendly. I would say this is a perfect spot if you have wriggly little ones, who struggle to sit still for too long.
The Ballingdon Valley, Sudbury
Prado Lounge, Sudbury
Sudbury has lots of great places to eat out as a family. One of our favourites is The Prado Lounge. Right in the middle of town on Market Hill, It’s a bar/restaurant that has a nice relaxed atmosphere to take children, yet still feels like going somewhere nice for dinner. The menu is great, good pub stables plus a tapas menu and my favourite – the cocktails! The kids menu has all the usual’s you’d expect and comes with a carton of juice and hummus pot. The only thing to keep in mind is that the portion size’s for the kids meals are on the small side, so I would say more suited to very little ones. I love the interiors – vintage luxe with industrial pops of colour full of comfy seating and large tables for when you are meeting up with friends.
The White Horse, Sudbury
We have found a good pub for a family roast is the White Horse Sudbury. Right in the centre of town, we went just before Christmas and the food was great. Really good quality and friendly service too.
Burger Amour, Bury St Edmunds
In my children’s eyes, burgers and nuggets are king and to be quite frank, when they were younger they thought there was no where better to go out for dinner than McDonald’s. So, having a restaurant open up that specialises in burgers, but that also looks nice to spend time in, definitely sparked my interest for family meals out. The restaurants have a contemporary rustic feel with pallet furniture and bold signage and I recently really enjoyed a meal out there with my son. it was simple to order using the app and most importantly the burgers were heaven! You could taste it was good quality and the homemade sauces and extras added that little something to easily elevate it from basic to gastro – American style. The sides are also impressive and to finish (Although we really didn’t have room) The hot donut desserts were a lovely light and sweet finish. In fact, I’d say they would make a good treat of their own, so I’ve already thought I might treat my kids to a donuts one afternoon in the summer holidays at our local Sudbury one. Its not the cheapest but the side portions are big, so if you’re not looking to spend too much, I would say you could def spilt a few of these between a family.
There are Burger Amour restaurants in both Bury St Edmunds and Sudbury and we’ve recently also sampled the delivery service at home. The only thing I would say is that its not overly easy to make changes to what’s on the menu. (Again this is to accommodate my fussy kids dread of sauce!) As although there are options to add items to burgers on both their own website and the Uber Eats app, you can’t take them off, so you do have to ring separately for this. It all worked out though, and my son was very happy with his (sauceless) burger.
Family Friendly Pubs In Long Melford
The Hare Inn, Long Melford
Another great one for a laid back family meal is The Hare Inn, Long Melford. Again they have a good menu, pub classics done well, but the real selling point for us, is the climbing frame in the garden. Perfect for sunny afternoons or evening meals out with friends, so you can relax with a drink while the kids can go off and play where you can still see them.
The Swan Long Melford
Another nice pub we visited a few times last summer as a family, was The Swan in Long Melford. Its been beautifully done out with elegant interiors and has more of a nice restaurant feel than a noisy pub. It’s more the type of place, I’d only take my children now they are old enough to sit easily through a meal though, without too much fuss. Not that it doesn’t feel family friendly, I can imagine they would be very accommodating to families with little ones, but personally, somewhere that feels nice like this, used to make me feel a bit on edge when eating out with a stampeding toddler and baby. The food is really good, there’s some great sharing options and my kids love their pizzas.
Places to Eat out With Kids in Colchester
I have to confess, we haven’t been as great at sampling independent places in Colchester since kids, as we mostly go there at peak busy times, when we are on a schedule, so tend to stick with what we know for speed and ease. Other than Nandos, (obvs doesn’t need any explaining) we always have a good meal out together in Bills. Its right on the high-street, the staff are really friendly, I love their industrial boho interiors, its a great one for brunch that we all enjoy.
Just on the outskirts of Colchester, I think Chiquitos at Tolgate, is also good one for families. if you’re out shopping or even on the way to the Zoo, its a Mexican chain with lots of space and a buzzy atmosphere. We used to live nearby when my children were very little and its a nice lively restaurant to take tots and little ones. Mine always used to love the Sombreros you could wear and their brightly coloured mocktails still go down well now.
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Where is your favourite local to eat out as a family?