Matt and I ate out a lot pre-kids and it was one thing that I was rather determined that we would incorporate into our parenting, rather than end up in Little Chef whenever we needed a break from the monotony of cooking.
As a result, our kids are pretty good and well behaved in restaurants but as every parent knows, there is the ‘push’ factor and that, my friends, is when you book a table in a swanky restaurant at BEDTIME. 7.30pm, to be precise.
That’s the time that we found ourselves being shown to our table in 28-50, the Wine Workshop and Kitchen and look, I’m not going to deny it, I was nervous. Not only were the kids quite tired after an exciting day in London, but it was apparent that when we arrived, this was a Grown Up Restaurant. There were sexy singletons at the bar drinking cocktails, the lights were low and the music intimately cool and I knew that my pre-kid Kate would have just fallen in love upon stepping through the door (HELLO, WINE WORKSHOP) but post-kid Kate was somewhat terrified that we would be the guests from hell.
I didn’t need to worry AT ALL. We couldn’t have been more welcome.
We nestled into a lovely booth, and our lovely waitress instantly bought them both a cushion each so that they were a bit higher at the table. She then told us that the chef had a special menu for them, and she gently asked them what they would like. Maggie, without a breath, wanted fish and chips and Bess fancied a burger and Matt and I did that ‘haha’ thing that adults do when you know that’s not on the cards and we’ll be lucky if they eat some pasta with an exotic name.
Again. we shouldn’t have worried. The waitress returned from the open pass and said that the chef had advised that tonight’s menu was cod and fries, and burger and sides, and an alternative of pasta. The kids were sold on the spot and ordered their favourites. It’s worth mentioning that not only do this establishment love children to do this, but kids can eat FREE here – that’s right, completely FREE – every Saturday when dining with an adult.
It’s always worth, when considering taking kids to a Swanky Restaurant to bear in mind that you WILL NEED DISTRACTIONS because kids get itchy and tetchy. We take colouring pads, crayons, a mini puzzle thing and of course, have our phones for when we feel the meltdown happening. So forearmed we were and the kids were mostly fine, happy and nicely chatty.
And so to our meals – first; oysters and grilled prawns. I ridiculously only tried oysters for the first time last year and oh my goodness, I need to make up for lost time. I couldn’t love them more. These were juicy, large, gorgeously plump Native oysters with shallot vinaigrette and a dash of lemon juice on top – my mouth is watering just thinking of them. Matt’s grilled prawns with aioli and salad were five huge, juicy, king prawns, perfectly griddled and he daintily wolfed them in seconds. The champagne was served from a jeroboam and I won’t lie, I was immensely thrilled by it. I know it’s a show piece but apparently, 28-50, as we were advised by their Sommelier, get through 1-2 jeroboams every day. And they have to have their own table, apparently, which I loved even more. Table for the champagne, Madam? DON’T MIND IF I DO.
The girl’s mains arrived just before ours – a mini burger with gherkins and brioche bun and for Maggie, a perfectly cooked cod loin, both with fries and to their utter delight, ketchup especially for them. As they mmm’d and aahh’d with satisfaction, our steaks arrived – wonderfuly tender, 28 day Aberdeen Angus X Scottish rib-eye steaks, perfectly rare and accompanied by the most exquisite béarnaise sauce, fries and a side salad.
With each course, the Sommelier brought a new wine, and explained the origin, region and why it was the perfect companion our meal. I’m always fascinated by this; and importantly we weren’t served huge whacking goblets of wine – every course was accompanied by just the right amount so that we were ready for the next.
By now, Maggie had fallen asleep within the cosy booth and so Bess chose ice cream for dessert, and Matt ordered the Apple & Rhubarb crumble that he reckoned was better than mine and let’s just say that is a Tall Order, right there. But it was absolutely delicious and again, our wonderful Sommelier brought the perfect sweet, dessert wine – that smelt and tasted like tangerines. Bess declared it the best meal that she’d ever eaten, and as we finished our coffees, told us solemnly that she was going to return when she was a ‘grown up’ to eat the steak, and drink ALL of the wine. I couldn’t agree more.
There are three 28-50’s in London; Marylebone, Fetter Lane and we visited Maddox Street which is a hop and a skip from Oxford Street. You can discover more about 28-50 restaurants: here
Disclaimer: . We were guests of 28-50 restaurants and our meal provided free of charge. As ever, we only review honestly and in keeping with The Motherload® ethos at all times and welcome your own feedback and experience of this venue.