Dining with toddlers is not fun. It really isn’t. If I could stay home all the time, and never bring my child into a restaurant, I would. But they need to learn how to be polite, well-mannered human beings. And it takes some practice. I know my child can be loud and obnoxious. He climbs out of his booster seat, and under the table, and into my lap. But if we never take him out in public, he’ll never learn.
Fortunately, kid-friendly restaurants can be found all over the area. And one of my favorite places to dine in with my little monster is Red Robin.
Red Robin is found all over the country. Locally, we go to the Enfield restaurant. But you can also find them throughout Connecticut in Manchester, West Hartford and Danbury, to name a few. In Enfield, the restaurant can be found right on Hazard Avenue, off I-91.
Red Robin is a hopping place, and it seems no matter what time we go, there is always a wait. For us, if it’s longer than 5 to 10 minutes, we just can’t do it. Three-year-olds have no patience. They have a great waiting room, which was recently remodeled. But if you go during prime dinner time, or even lunch time, expect to wait for a table. We actually made three attempts for our latest dinner (to celebrate our boy’s birthday). The first visit was at 4:30 p.m., and there was a 20 minute wait (so we decided to skip). The second was at lunch time, and we were given a wait time of 15 minutes (again, decided to skip). And our final, successful visit was at 7:30 p.m., on a Monday night with no wait. But basically, the bottom-line is this: Red Robin is popular (rightfully so). Expect to wait for a table; unless you’re there at like 3 p.m. on a Tuesday.
Right next to the waiting room they have a full bar area, with seating. The bar area is for grown-ups, so don’t plan on having dinner in that area with the kids!
On the way to the dining room, you can actually see into the kitchen! I love restaurants that open up the kitchen for the patrons to view! It’s fun seeing where your delicious bottomless french fries come from!
We hadn’t been to Red Robin for a couple months; apparently, they recently did some remodeling! The seating is a little different, but the overall layout is still the same! They have full booths, tables with a booth and chairs, and then tables with chairs only. They have low tables as well as high top booths. They also have outdoor dining available.
They have highchairs available, as well as booster seats. We are slowly graduating to the booster seat and opted for that tonight. It helped that it had a seat belt! He still likes to climb out of his seat- apparently he has places to go.
We always come equipped with trains; it makes everyone’s dining experience better. Until he realizes the fun in dropping them off the table.
I love the kid’s menu at Red Robin! They have a ton of options, and every meal comes with a side and a drink. The menu is for kids 11 and under. And honestly, I find them super generous in size for toddlers. On top of that the drinks and the sides are bottomless.
The entrees include the standard child-friendly fare: mac & cheese, grilled cheese chicken fingers, pizza and pasta. If you have a more adventurous eater, they also have burgers, meatballs, corn dogs, grilled chicken and cod. The prices vary depending on the entree, but they are all in the $5 range.
As for sides, you can get different fruits or veggies. Of course, french fries is always an option. Drinks included are milk, juice, lemonade and soda. As I mentioned, the drinks and the sides are bottomless.
Now, usually my child ALWAYS gets the meatballs. But this time, he chose pizza. I thought that was kind of weird at a burger joint; but as long as he ate it, I didn’t care what he chose. The pizza was actually really good! Of course, I made him get the freckled fruit. He always gets to munch on our french fries, so I try to keep things a little healthy by choosing the fruit for him. Plus, that freckled fruit is GOOD. They soak it in the same juice they use to make the freckled lemonade.
Of course, my husband and I picked really delicious hamburgers off their extensive menu. And me, being the idiot I am, ordered this monster size burger that my husband was trying to tell me was going to be too big, and I didn’t listen. Guess what? It was too big. So I made him finish it. He should have warned me better.
The best part of our night, besides the great food and the fact that my child was not a complete out-of-control toddler, was that boy ate free! Currently, some of the local Red Robins have a promotion with the Hartford Yard Goats. If the Yard Goats win a game, then kids eat free the next day! We actually came with a coupon for my boy to eat free for his birthday (make sure you join the Red Robin Royalty Club to get free meals for yourself, and your child on your birthday!), but we decided to hold on to that for our next visit, and he ate free since the Goats won! If you haven’t yet, make sure to sign the kids up for the Red Robin Hartford Yard Goats Kids Club! And make sure to tell you server that the Yard Goats won, so the can take your kid’s meal off the bill!
(Source: Hartford Yard Goats, here)
We had a fun night out with our boy! We love Red Robin because they are super kid-friendly and you never feel stressed out dining with your child. Overall, our child is pretty good; but he has his moments (what three year old doesn’t?). They get the food and drinks out to your table really fast, the food is really good, and they have wonderful staff! This is definitely one of our favorite family friendly restaurants in the area!
This about sums it up…
15 Hazard Avenue – Enfield, Connecticut
Sunday to Thursday: 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Friday to Saturday : 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.
- Free Parking
- Changing table located in ladies room- handicap stall
- Lots of seating
- Highchairs and booster seats available
- Extensive Kids Menu with many healthy options available- includes bottomless sides and beverages
- Major credit cards accepted
- Expect a wait during prime dining times
- Affordable dining but make sure to join the Red Robin Royaltyfor free birthday meals and earn points towards additional free food
- If the Hartford Yard Goats win, kids eat free at participating local restaurants (includes the Manchester, West Hartford and Enfield locations)