TRIED & TASTED: Babies Who Lunch

THE PLACE:

Babies Who Lunch is an event that takes place at varying restaurants. The inaugural get together that we attended was at Minnow, Clapham Common

THE GIST:

Set up by foodie mama blogger Emily Lawler (aka Mama Needs A Mimosa), Babies Who Lunch are exclusive parent and baby dining experiences in highly rated restaurants across London. Included in the ticket price was a mimosa cocktail on arrival, three course lunch from a set menu with a couple of options per course and a goodie bag to take home.

THE HIGHLIGHTS:

Not only are the venues Emily selects genuinely rated restaurants (I’d been dying to try Minnow for a while before we even saw this event come up), but there’s the added bonus that EVERY other diner in there is a fellow parent, with a pint-sized plus one and all that entails.

If one of the babies (or parents for that matter) has an on-the-spot meltdown, no-one gets whiplash to see where the noise is coming from. By the same token, any rattle-lobbing, spoon-dropping, drink-spilling, or plate-crashing is met with a reassuring level of nonchalance.

One of the waitresses even spotted Lyns by the door of the restaurant trying to get Emilia off to sleep in the pram and kindly offered to take over the rocking duty so that Lyns could come back to the table and finish her meal. Someone give that woman a medal!

The food at Minnow’s event was nothing short of delicious! Delicate and fresh cured pollock with sea lettuce to start, followed by fall-off-the-bone tender breast of hogget with dumplings and rounded off with wonderfully autumnal poached pear and apple sorbet – we genuinely couldn’t fault it, especially for the price.

THE NIGGLES:

This was the first event of its kind so some general leeway and understanding certainly needs to be given for small organisational hiccups such as the length of time needed for the switchover between the two lunchtime sittings and the venue being a little on the small side given the number of mums and babies arriving in force, leading to triple-parked buggies by the door and issues getting in and around tables.

Putting on an event like this is a huge undertaking and we were more than happy to be the guinea pigs and are sure that learnings will have been taken to make the next one even more impressive .

THE DAMAGE:

At £27 a ticket for the cocktail and three courses, we thought this was fantastic value considering the quality of the food, sought-after location and exclusive hire. The goody bag wasn’t just a token gesture either but actually contained some really lovely treats for both us and the kids. Bonus!

TOP TIP:

Both sittings for this event were a sell-out so when tickets to the next one go on sale, get in there fast!

If two sittings are an option, we would recommend going for the earlier one as it means you’re straight in when you arrive and won’t be left hanging around outside if the sitting before you overruns.

You can see the full menus when you book so if you have any special dietary requirements we found Emily and the restaurant to be hugely accommodating.

THE VERDICT: 8/10

Hats off to both Emily and Minnow for taking on such an ambitious event and pulling it off so well. I’m sure that this was far from the staff’s average lunch service but the team were warm, friendly and very understanding about the babies. Special arrangements were put in place regarding makeshift changing tables in the loos, and the food was of the brilliant quality that you would expect if you were visiting at any other time.

Where so many mums and babies come together in the same place there will always be some level of low-key chaos but we enjoyed a delicious lunch in a venue that we may not have normally dared to venture into for fear of aggravating other diners. We would wholeheartedly recommend this to other mamas who, like us, love their food.

MORE INFORMATION / TICKETS

Tickets have just gone on sale for the next Babies Who Lunch Event, taking place on 15th Jan at The Coal Shed in Southwark. For more information visit the Eventbrite page here or follow Emily on Instagram @mamamimosaldn for the instant heads-up on all the info and other future events

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