I asked around and even conducted a survey looking for suggestions for great places to take the kids out to eat. I’m putting the results of this into a series of posts. Great sit-down restaurants (where you order at the table) is the 3rd installment. This isn’t an exhaustive list but it has some great options with a large range of prices and styles.
What’s your favorite sit-down restaurant to take the kids to? Is there another restaurant you think should be on this list?
Big Ts BBQ
2138 Crowchild Trail NW- https://bigtsbbq.com/
Big Ts offers big platters which are great for kids because they can try a bunch of different things and find out what they like. They also have a excellent kids menu with options like, home made mac & cheese, ribs, chicken fingers and cheese burgers. Kids meals come with a side, drink and choice of ice cream or jello for desert.
Essence of Saigon Garden
128, 3604 – 52 Avenue NW https://www.essenceofsaigon.com/
The food at this restaurant gets rave reviews and they are very welcoming to families. They even offer a kids menu with rice, soup or vermicelli options.
Willow Park Village #276, 10816 Macleod Tr. S. http://sushiginza.ca/
The décor at Sushi Ginza complete with a bridge, fish pond and waterfall will be a hit with kids. The quick service and the option to sit at the sushi bar serving up floating sushi boats will make you want to go back again and again.
McKenzie Towne 4600 130 Avenue SE http://karmacalgary.com/
Looking to try taking the kids out to eat for Indian food? If you are in the South Karma is a great option. Family owned and operated, they have lots of variety and friendly service. They also have a lunch buffet.
Nick’s Steakhouse and Pizza
2430 Crowchild Trail NW (across from McMahon Stadium) http://nickssteakandpizza.com/
Nick’s Steakhouse is a family run Calgary original – founded in 1979 by Nick Petros. Nick’s has a retro feel but the quality of their food is excellent. They are very family-friendly and welcoming to kids.
They serve classic thick crust pizza, great steak and fresh made burgers. They also have a kids menu with typical kid friendly fare as well as steak sliders.
4404 14 Street NW http://www.pelicanpier.ca/
Pelican Pier specializes in seafood and makes a great chowder, fish tacos and fish and chips. If you’re not into fish they have fantastic chicken strips as well. Kids will love the quirky decor and casual atmosphere. Their kids menu features popcorn shrimp, chicken fingers and fish and chips.
Pfanntastic Pannenkoek House
2439 54th Ave. SW http://www.dutchpancakes.ca/
The Pfanntastic Pannenkoek House serves up Dutch style pancakes, which are more similar to crepes than what we normally think of as pancakes with sweet or savory ingredients (like potato, onion, bacon and cheese) cooked right into them.
The pancakes are bigger than you might expect so you will probably be happy with one per person. Although you may also want to split a sweet one for dessert. There can be a line up on weekends but if you get your name on the list the line moves pretty quickly.
See Merry About Town’s Review of the Pfanntastic Pannenkoek House
(photo courtesty of Pfanntastic Pannenkoek Haus)
6626 4 street NE
This Vietnamese restaurant rivals fast food restaurants for how quickly you are able to get your food. The atmosphere is very casual and the food is great.
Pio Peruvian Rotisserie Chicken
104 2929 Sunridge Way NE http://www.pioperu.com/
Pio is a great place for kids to try out some Peruvian flavours and dishes. The rotisserie chicken is fantastic and you can also find some unique dishes such as cassava fries and fried plantains. They offer a kids menu with smaller portions of their regular menu items.
Sauce Italian Market Restaurant
3326 17th Avenue SW – http://www.sauceitalianmarket.com/
The kids menu at Sauce offers linguine alfredo, mac & cheese, spaghetti & meatball or cheese pizza. For an extra charge, you can add different proteins or ice cream to the kids meal. Meals include a cookie and a drink.
3725 Memorial dr SE – https://www.tacosmexicoyyc.com/
If you are looking for a more authentic taco than you usually get in Calgary, give Tacos Mexico a try. They don’t have a specific kids menu, but their 2 taco options will be filling for most kids for a reasonable price.
Inglewood – 1212 9 Ave SE – http://www.madisons1212.com/
Madison 1212 is all about craft. Craft nachos, craft salads, craft cocktails and craft beer. You can also get brunch and dessert.
The nachos are great for kids because they are so shareable. They don’t have a special kids menu but you don’t really need one. They do however, have highchairs and super delicious food. I recommend the Korean nachos.
106 3rd Avenue SE http://www.silverdragoncalgary.ca/
Considered to be one of the best places for Dim Sum in the city, Silver Dragon is another great option for a food adventure. You can choose to order from their menu or if you are there during their Dim Sum daily brunch instead you can choose from dishes made for sharing from the Dim Sum carts circling around.
If you go on the weekend, there can be a line-up but once you’re seated you get to start eating right away.
Note: I’ve been told that Silver Dragon does not have the best washrooms and are lacking change tables.
Want to do Dim Sum but have some unadventurous eaters in your party? Check out this post.
2 Calgary Locations – Edmonton Trail and Marda Loop http://boogiesburgers.com/
The food at the locally owned, Boogies burgers is made fresh but comes fast. The restaurant is casual and in their words “modest” but it’s cool in a retro kind of way. They serve up some interesting burgers including a pizza burger and a deep fried mac and cheese burger as well as more standard fare and a huge selection of milkshakes. For kids they offer a reasonable priced single patty burger, hot dog and a kids chicken fingers and fries.
(photo courtesy of Boogies Burgers)
3 Calgary locations – http://www.chianticafe.ca/
If your family loves pasta, Chianti’s is a great pick. With tons of different pasta options, this family friendly restaurant is sure to have something for everyone. Check out their pasta specials on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday nights. The staff is said to be great with kids and the atmosphere is vibrant making it less stressful to take the kids.
6 Calgary locations – http://www.kinjosushiandgrill.com/
Kinjo was by far the most popular response for the best sit down restaurant for kids and it’s easy to see why. Although Sushi is their specialty, they have lots of options for kids (and adults) that are fish free too.
They make an extra effort that keeps families coming back including a fruit appetizer for the kids, kids chopsticks and pocky sticks at the end of your meal.
See our review of Kinjo here.
2 sit down locations http://www.gingerbeef.com/
The Ginger Beef has been around since the 80s and offers classic Canadian Chinese food and is named after Calgary’s signature Chinese food dish. The staff is known for being friendly and welcoming to families.
(photo courtesy of Ginger Beef)
McMahon Stadium Centre and Downtown – http://www.saigony2kcrowchild.com/
Even though most Vietnamese restaurants don’t have a kids menu, they typically have a casual atmosphere and quick service. Saigon Y2K is no exception. They restaurant is spacious with lots of seating.
They can accommodate larger groups easily and if your kids are a little restless you aren’t right on top of the next table. The food is fresh and the meat is always good quality.
4th Spot/Spot On
Serving up Canadian comfort food, these two restaurants have a family friendly atmosphere. Their kids menu has options such as pizza, spaghetti and meatballs and mac and cheese and includes a drink and a small dessert. Kids eat free on Sundays! The cauliflower bites are surprisingly good.
See our review of the 4th Spot
Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria
4 Calgary locations – http://famoso.ca/
Famoso’s serve Neapolitan style thin crust pizza. It cooks quickly so you usually don’t have to wait too long for your food. While you are waiting you can get coloring or pizza dough to for the kids to play with if you ask.
When you dine-in they have a kids’ special which comes with a kid sized pizza (as well as a few other entrée options), a drink and a scoop of Fiasco gelato or sorbetto. Did I mention they have Fisaco gelato and sorbetto? The pizza is excellent and the atmosphere is nice but very family friendly.
See our review of Famoso.
The Old Spaghetti Factory
472 – 36th Street NE – http://www.oldspaghettifactory.ca/
The Old Spaghetti Factory used to be found downtown near Eau Claire, but now has a new North East location. The kids menu includes, soup or salad, bread, a drink and spumoni ice cream for dessert.
Barlow Trail – 3322 23rd Street NE https://www.whitespot.ca/
This BC and Alberta chain has been around for 85 years! They specialize in breakfast, Burgers and milkshakes but you can also get soup, salad, sandwiches and a selection of other entrees.
They pride themselves on providing a great place for families to eat and offer crayon and an activity booklet while you wait for your food. They have a flexible kids menu where kids can order a main and side with a drink and ice cream for dessert served in a little pirate boat. They will also rush the food for the kids if you ask.
Buffalo Wild Wings
2 Calgary locations – Sunridge and Macleod Trail http://www.buffalowildwings.com/en-CA/
Buffalo Wilds Wings is a Sports bar but they have a separate lounge and restaurant which is completely kid friendly. They specialize in wings which you can get with a wide variety of sauces (look for the flavour of the month). You can get the wings regular or boneless (breaded chicken) and they have a solid kids menu as well.
They have tablets and crayons for the kids to play with while you wait for your food. There are also tons of TVs playing sports everything.
Note: this may be a little overwhelming for some kids.
Multiple locations – https://bostonpizza.com/en
Boston Pizza is a Canadian based chain with multiple locations in Calgary, across Canada, in the US and Mexico. They offer regular and thin crust pizza. Boston pizza is a super popular place to take kids and it is easy to see why.
They have a great kids menu with lots of options, kid cups and coloring for while you wait. The atmosphere is very family-friendly and you don’t have to worry if your kids are acting like kids. Service is typically fast so you don’t have to wait a long time.
1 Calgary location – 9823 MacLeod Trail SW – http://jackastors.com/
Jack Astor’s is a Canadian based chain with over 40 locations. The restaurant has a fun atmosphere that includes drawing on the tables. The kids menu has great options including sirloin steak, chicken wings, chicken stir fry and more. Kids meals come with a drink and choice of side and dessert.
6 Calgary Locations http://moxies.ca/
Originating in Calgary, this Canadian chain offers a diverse Canadian menu. The atmosphere is a little more upscale than most of the restaurant on this list but they are still very family friendly.
The kids menu offers typical kid friendly options and comes with unlimited drinks as well as dessert. The dessert is the best part – the impressive looking volcano sundaes with dry ice will definitely impress the kids.
East Side Marios
2 Calgary locations – http://www.eastsidemarios.com/
East side Mario is a Canadian based chain offering Italian-american food such as pasta, steak and chicken. The atmosphere is casual, bright and family oriented. Their kids menu has options for kid with smaller and bigger appetites and offers free dessert too.
5 Calgary locations – http://www.montanas.ca/
This Canadian chain specializes in ribs, steaks and burgers. They have a lot of interesting décor that kids love to look at and are very casual and family friendly.
The tables have a huge sheet of brown paper on them that you can draw all over. The kids menu offer smaller versions of the adult menu and is served in a blue canoe and comes with a drink, dessert and an activity sheet.
2 Calgary locations – https://pacini.com/
Pacini’s is an Italian restaurant chain that originated in Quebec. Not only do they have a kids menu with pasta and pizza options, they also have a special kids menu for kids under 6. They also feature an all you can eat bread bar with a variety of breads that you can toast on the grill.
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