“The place where friends and family meet”, “Bring the kids!”, “Tot Tuesday”, “Free Soft Serve Ice Cream”. These are all quotes from the websites at Hopworks and Laurelwood Public House, and they show how much things have changed. Add Sunshine Tavern and Pause and these sort of restaurants are reaching out to a bigger audience. It’s Phillip Morris all over again!
Obviously this tactic is working, as both businesses are at the top of our survey. It sounds like they are great places to bring the kids. The Sunshine Tavern appeared out of nowhere to take the third place. Old Wive’s Tales puzzles me a bit, but I haven’t been there in years. Slappy Cakes reminds me of one of my favorite breakfast activities as a child – making my own pancakes (Micky Mouse of course).
1. Hopworks Urban Brewery / HUB –
- Urban Brewery – 2944 Southeast Powell Boulevard Portland, OR 97202 Map (503) 232-4677
- Bike Bar – 3947 N. Williams Ave., Portland OR 97227 Map (503) 287-6258
2. Laurelwood Public House & Brewery– 5115 Northeast Sandy Boulevard Portland, OR 97213 Map (503) 282-0622
3. Sunshine Tavern (closed)
4. Slappy Cakes – 4246 Southeast Belmont Street Portland, OR 97215 Map (503) 477-4805
5. Pause Kitchen and Bar– (closed)
6. Lucca – 3449 Northeast 24th Avenue Portland, OR 97212 Map (503) 287-7372 My review
7. Old Wive’s Tales – (closed)
8. The Country Cat – 7937 Southeast Stark Street Portland, OR 97215 Map (503) 408-1414
You can see all of the 2012 Reader Survey awards here
View Reader Survey 2012: Best Family Restaurant in a larger map
I have duly added all of these to my “places to avoid” list.
And those places will be more pleasant because of your avoidance.
Food Dude says
Not everyone likes kids, Sabes, and not everyone wants to eat in a restaurant full of them. Get used to it. Nick may be unduly forthcoming with his opinion, but it seems unlikely to me that he was taking a shot specifically at you (unlike your response).
Whoops, I meant Nate…
Thank you, Rick & Tommy. My interest in spending my hard-earned money and precious time in a dining experience devoid of screaming kids does not automatically make me an “unpleasant” person.
Rick Hamell says
Agreed, I like kids. I like my niece. I like giving her back to her parents. I like eating out. I like eating out and enjoying myself. Screaming kids in the background drastically distracts from that enjoyment.
I’m glad a list like this exists, it gives parents a good idea of places to actually take their kids who’ll be entertained. Instead of having to sit in a booth banging around and screaming because they’re bored. And interrupting everyone else’s enjoyment of their dining experience.
When Peanut Butter & Ellie’s closed a few years back, there was a definite void in the marketplace for a eatery where parents could enjoy an adult beverage, kids could play to their heart’s content, the food was better than average, and no one would feel embarrassed when a child acted like a child. HUB and Laurelhurst filled that void nicely, and there are adults only sections of each establishment for those who don’t like voting in favor of school bond measures.
After the smoking ban forced many eateries to change their vibe, I noticed more and more places extending their “minors welcome” hours. Dots (RIP), in particular, did a great job of shifting from smoky boozer to family-friendly lunch and supper spot. If the twentysomethings who are making Portland home decide to stick around over the next decade, I bet we’ll see a few more such places either retool their target demographic or open from scratch with that in mind.
The best part about Hopworks is that it is more of a great place that also happens to be family-friendly, as opposed to a family-friendly place that isn’t bad. Slappy Cakes, I’m looking at you.
I love going to Pause with the kids, but I like it as much if not more when I can go without them. The staff here is amazing patient with the kiddos and unconcerned parents, but they’ve also done a nice job of cordoning off some adult space for those who don’t want to eat after bed time. Don’t avoid this place just because you want to avoid kids though.
I think Old Wives’ Tale serves one of the worst meals in Portland.