Restaurants & Nightlife

4 MINUTE READ

Child-friendly fine dining in London

Words by Georgie Young

09 June 2023

Two children sat at a table eating a selection of dishes

At these six spots, eating out with the family is child’s play.

When you think fine dining, you imagine crisp white tablecloths, the clink of silver on bone china, and the flourish of sophisticated service. You might even picture a golden piano serenading a suited and booted crowd. What you may not picture is a small child holding court over a plate of cured chalk stream trout.

However, this is what family-friendly fine dining is all about. At this clutch of restaurants, the needs of both older and younger diners are given equal weight: they’re chic without being childish, fun without being too fancy, and offer genuinely interesting children’s menus that both push and please little palettes. Here are five of the best.

Apricity

In keeping with chef Chantelle Nicholson’s eco-ethos, Apricity’s ‘culinary kids’ offering is all about hyper-seasonal, sustainable produce. The five-course tasting menu includes intriguing ingredients like oyster mushrooms, Jerusalem artichokes, and pork dumplings with horseradish. That’s not all. The restaurant has also just launched a series of cooking classes with Nicholson herself – ideal if you have a budding chef in the family.

Selection of dishes displayed in plates at Apricity, London Selection of dishes displayed in plates at Apricity, London
68 Duke St, W1K 6JU

Fallow

Fallow is fun. And the dishes are inventive, too. Mini Fallowers can tuck into pint-sized portions of some of its most popular dishes, such as smoked beef ribs and grilled fish; familiar favourites like fish fingers are available if they’re feeling fussy. Want to make your kids’ eyes pop out? Order the deceivingly delicious smoked cod’s head from the main menu.

Decorative chocolate sundae pudding in a glass bowl served at Fallow, London
Fish dish served in a bowl at Fallow, London
52 Haymarket, SW1Y 4RP

HIDE

While parents enjoy a five-course fine dining feast, children visiting Ollie Dabbous Michelin-starred restaurant will be eating eat burrata salads and steamed Cornish fish with rapeseed mayo. Plus, the charred broccoli with a light vinaigrette encourages them to eat their greens (even if they’re bribed to do so with creamy vanilla ice cream).

Beautifully displayed garnished bowl of vegetables served at HIDE, London
Pudding served in detailed glass with floral garnish served at HIDE, London
85 Piccadilly, W1J 7NB

Roka

It’s not often that we’d recommend Canary Wharf over Mayfair, yet it’s the most easterly outpost of this Japanese restaurant that’s best for children. Why? It has a fully-fledged play area – ideal for distracting kids with books and toys whilst you set your attention focus on the sushi menu. It’s particularly popular for brunch, during which platters of sushi come with bottomless wine for grown-ups.

Luxury golden restaurant interior of Roka, Canary Wharf, London Luxury golden restaurant interior of Roka, Canary Wharf, London
4, Park Pavillion, 40 Canada Square, E14 5FW

Sketch

Even grown-ups find Sketch’s décor magical – so you can only imagine how smaller eyes might goggle at the sight of the forest-themed Glade or famed egg loos. Breakfast in The Glade has many options to please children (including waffles and fruit with yoghurt), but we recommend booking the children’s afternoon tea in the newly yellow Gallery, which includes a teddy bear to take home with them.

Contemporary yellow luxury interior of Sketch, London
Three-tiered afternoon tea cake display at Sketch, London
9 Conduit St, W1S 2XG

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