No one puts baby in the corner!
Sometimes it seems that people think we are just trying to be nice when we tell them to bring the kids. That is not the case…we sincerely enjoy the company of people younger than ourselves, and we take great pleasure in seeing them enjoy our nourishing food.
This house has been serving families comforting food since long before we were here. The culture that we entered into is a culture that we are happy to continue supporting. In the years we have been in this house, we have had watched families grow and change in so many ways. Guests come in to tell us they are pregnant, bring in babies just a few hours old, let toddles crawl around our dining room floor, celebrate good grades, come in before the prom & after graduation ceremonies. When we say that we are a family place, we are serious as heart attack. “You better bring that baby in!” is not an uncommon thing to hear us hollering at people as they leave after their dinner.
So why no children’s menu? Simple. We don’t want to put your child in a box in the corner of our menu. We are not going to make assumptions about a person’s preferences simply because of his or her age. We are not going to assume that your child only wants starch and dairy, that they don’t like meat and veggies, and that they want bland flavors. We don’t have “alternative menus” for adults, and we do not intend to create one for children.
We want to have a conversation with your children. We want to know what they like to eat, and if there’s anything new they want to try. If it’s just noodles and oil, that’s just fine with us. But if they want to add some chicken, or a meatball, that’s fine too. Maybe they want a little bit of cauliflower, maybe not.
One of the best parts of this job is helping children develop these types of social skills while encouraging them to verbalize their desires and eat fresh, healthy food. That is why we volunteered for the Kids Cooking Corner healthy cooking demo this month, and why we intend to continue helping that non-profit succeed in exactly the same goals. Partnered together, we will foster a brighter future with people who will have a strong connection to their food and their farms.
Our concern with making a “children’s menu” has also been that kids will be less likely to ask for what they would really like to eat and much less likely to try something new. Adults tend to be comfortable asking to modify a menu item, asking what a dish is like or ordering something special all together. But most kids don’t want to draw attention to themselves in restaurants.
Also, of course, with the variety of dietary allergies that children are diagnosed with everyday, it seems like a waste of time to create a separate menu that is going to be modified just as much as our “adult” menu.
We want to keep things as simple as possible for everyone. We use whole foods and freshly prepare our dishes, so it’s easy to look through our menu to create a meal that works for people of all ages.
And if you need something put in the blender for the littlest ones, just let us know 🙂