Last Saturday we had friends and their little girl to stay with us. After having a bit of a chaotic, boisterous lunch at ours (it couldn’t have been anything other with four adults, a nearly-three year old and two one year olds!) we decided to eat out at Di Meo’s for supper.
We decided on Di Meo’s on Gloucester Road, a small family run Italian restaurant. This has been a favourite of my husband and I, long before we had children. The staff are still welcoming to us on the odd occasion we go there with the kids.
The staff were, as always, nothing less than friendly and welcoming on Saturday. We hadn’t even booked in advance and despite being a busy night, they were happy to find us a table.
Anyone who has ever taken young children to a restaurant will know the disorder and mess that can be created within seconds. Cutlery immediately began to be flung around and napkins were crumpled and dropped to the floor in wonder.
Unfortunately, Di Meos do not have any high-chairs, only a booster seat which our friends’ daughter sat in. Therefore my little girl sat on my husband’s lap and our little boy enjoyed the treat of being in a grown-up chair. Unfortunately, the novelty of this soon wore off and he instead opted for crawling under the table, a far more exciting option!
From hard experience, my husband and I have found that in such situations, the only truly effective remedy to restore calm and order to the table, is food…Immediate food. My husband duly requested some bread sticks from the waiter, explaining the situation and the waiter was happy to oblige.
Us grown-ups were thus able to have a proper look at the menu and make our choices. Given the quantity you receive at Di Meo’s, we decided the children would have some of our portions, rather than ordering separate meals for them.
I opted for a salad which was actually on the starter menu but the waiter reassured me that I could have it as a main dish. I thought this way my kids could have some healthy stuff along with their dad’s pizza.
Meals were served quickly and were delicious. My only quibble was that my salad did come starter-size after all but I didn’t mention it to the waiter since they had been so accomodating to us at such short notice, not to mention the mess being created by our little ones.
The meal (three pizzas, salad, garlic bread, chips and drinks) came to £60 which in my opinion is very reasonable. It was just a shame we did not have time to order a ‘Banana Rum’ dessert…I highly recommend this!
It was a relaxed, enjoyable meal thanks to the lovely food and the patience and understanding shown to us by Di Meo’s staff. And, as always, eating out means respite from clearing up after mealtimes with little ones. On this occasion the task was left to the poor waiter whom I noticed crawling under our table with a dustpan and brush as we were leaving!
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