Portland has carved a well-earned reputation as a food lover’s paradise with its diverse scene that puts great emphasis on fresh, organic and homegrown ingredients. Within this diversity, foodies can find a great selection of family-friendly restaurants in the city perfect for them and their youngsters.
Let’s face it; kids make a mess out of helping Mom or Dad in the kitchen. At Slappy Cakes, you can give children the go-signal to get their hands dirty while making their own pancakes. Each table features a griddle allowing customers to come up with their own inventions using different types of batter and other accompaniments. You can also select other delectable treats from their fully packed menus for a memorable breakfast or lunch.
McMenamin’s Kennedy School
While the name is synonymous to watering holes around Oregon and Washington, the McMenamin’s Kennedy School provides a family-friendly venue for dining and entertainment. The structure is an architectural treasure from the 1900s in the Alberta Arts District in Northeast Portland. Today, it houses lodgings, concert halls, movie theater and casual restaurant. Families can choose from pasta dishes, steaks, seafood and other specialties, and adults can get a taste of McMenamin’s popular cider, beers, wines and spirits from the cozy pubs.
If there’s one thing parents know to be true, it’s that teenagers have monstrous appetites. Bring them over to Foster Burger, where they can satisfy their cravings. The restaurant serves up a creative spin on the much-loved comfort food with its specialties like Kiwi (made with lamb patty) and the veggie variety called Rose City. Kids with allergy problems can rely on gluten-free buns while vegans can opt for the hemp patty. Feeling risky? Try the Black & White Fries that come with squid ink aioli, truffle oil and pecorino cheese.
Laurelwood Public House and Brewery
Portland has a number of pubs showcasing the city’s finest craft beers. The thoughtful design of Laurelwood Public House and Brewery makes it a favorite among families with young kids. Aside from giving patrons a relaxing place to unwind with micro beers on hand, this brewpub allows kids to enjoy themselves with designated play areas. Gluten-free options encourage diners with dietary restrictions to have a good time at Laurelwood. Parents will love the kid’s menu that features healthy choices like PBJ on Wheat and House-breaded All-Natural Chicken Bites.
Found all over Portland, the Laughing Planet is a chain of restaurants serving up Mexican fare with a healthy twist. The owners follow the farm-to-table concept, coming up with nutrition-packed salads, burritos, soups and others. While waiting for their orders, kids can play with toy dinosaurs provided on the tables. The comprehensive menu includes selections that are vegan, gluten-free and paleo-friendly.
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