Tucked around the back of Fulham Broadway on Farm Lane, My Dining Room is a new gastropub with a wonderful lunch menu and a great attitude towards little ones.
Food blogger Katie (Feeding Boys and A Firefighter) and I, along with our crew of four boys under the age of five, made a noisy arrival to the My Dining Room after an incident with a wasp en route. Despite the racket we received a warm welcome from the kind staff who ushered us to a lovely table, complete with separate small sized table for the minis and sting relief cream was magically produced for Sam’s sore finger.
With four starving kids to feed we ordered fast. Both of us never leave the house without a Santa’s sack of distractions, so after the apple juice had been half drunk, half spilt and the drawing games abandoned we brought out the Nintendo and offered iPhones to distract the boys. Feeling mellowed around the edges after our delicious summer cocktail, shaken up by the charming French head bar man – a summer sangria for me and cucumber cooler for Katie – we could properly relax and savour the experience.
My Dining Room chef Vingaudas Raulinaitis has created a menu based on traditional home recipes with a modern twist. The ingredients are sourced locally and organically with information about the meat and fish detailed on the menus. We picked the great value Summer Special Offer of two courses and a free cocktail for £15.
To start I chose the tender and smoky marinated filet of mackerel with avocado salsa and the trio of gnocchi with baby vegetable fricassee for main. The gnocchi was packed with flavour and served with delicious cuts of summery vegetables, all in a light herby sauce. My only criticism was it was a tiny bit soupy and could have done with a hunk of bread to mop up the sauce. Foodie Katie picked the perennial favourite tomato and mozzarella salad followed by the beautifully presented and equally light and tasty salmon and haddock fishcake. Not being able to resist a pudding we tucked into an Eton mess and the crème brulee – both wickedly naughty and worth it!
Amazingly, mini gourmands are invited to eat for free and the kids menu doesn’t disappoint. On offer are typical child-friendly meals such as chicken nuggets, pasta and hamburgers but all made from fresh local and organic ingredients and beautifully presented. There was no problem adapting a main meal to kids size for one of the boys, and all four of them enthusiastically dug into a mix of fish and chips, pasta and spaghetti bolognese making a huge mess, which the staff effortlessly cleared up.
Both of us agreed it was a extremely successful lunch out. We managed to chat, enjoy our food and the boys were all happy. The atmosphere was relaxed and informal and we felt spoilt and well looked after by the staff. It was a stark reminder of how much nicer it is to eat out in glamourous places rather than troop into the obviously ‘child-friendly’ places which are often bland and hectic experiences.
Also on offer are children’s cooking classes lead by the head chef which are available every other week from 21st July. They can also be booked for groups of to ten people as a fun alternative to the usual birthday party.
My Dining Room
18 Farm Lane, London, SW6 1PP 020 7381 3331
You can see all the pictures of our meal on Katie’s blog.