Treat the kids (and yourself) to a family-friendly meal in Hamilton at these kid-approved eateries. (Please check ahead for availability, delivery takeout options).
Jax Sweete Shoppe
33 King Street West, Dundas
Step back in time at this retro diner in downtown Dundas serving family friendly breakfast and lunches like fluffy pancake stacks and sweet and savoury crepes. Leave room for dessert with classics like banana splits and mile high sundaes. The kids will love the black and white checkered floors and swiveling counter stools.
Must Try: Crepes here come in all kinds of flavours including banana hazelnut crunch or strawberries and cream.
1013 King St East
Go ahead and let the kids play with their food at this east end storefront near Tim Hortons Field serving up summer festival inspired food year-round. Think funnel cake, corn dogs, burgers and fried pickles. It's the next best thing to hitting up the midway together.
Must Try: Their famous funnel cakes come topped with icing sugar and cinnamon. The rest is up to you with options like strawberries, Nutella, frozen yogurt, whipped cream and tons of other toppings.
Hutch’s On The Beach
280 Van Wagners Beach Road
It’s all smiles at this iconic beachside diner, open since 1946. Think classic hamburgers and hotdogs, poutine made with thick-cut fries, fish n’ chips, and classic milkshakes. Kids will love the retro details (like a working jukebox!) not to mention the beachfront location (cue playing in the sand).
Must-try: Hutch’s famous fish n’ chips followed by an ice cream cone or milkshake.
244 James Street North
If your kids love chicken – they’ll love Charred. The menu at this popular downtown Portuguese Churrasqueira (with a dash of Jewish deli) serves it up several ways – and they’re all delicious. Order the whole chicken to share, a sandwich, poutine, or chicken salad. Adults can kick it up a notch with Charred’s great hot sauce.
Must-try: Family platter style whole chicken with three sides to share. Choose from fresh cut fries, roasted potatoes, rice, or house salad.
Memphis Fire BBQ
1091 Highway #8, Winona
Have some napkins handy: mouth-watering plates like pulled pork, beef brisket, and hand-crafted burgers are all served with a smile at this southern barbecue joint. The atmosphere is laid back and totally kid-friendly with a diner feel and picnic table seating.
Must-try: Get a taste of Memphis’ most wanted with the slider combo while kids will love to munch on hand-held chicken drums and share family sized fries.
The Village Restaurant
35 King Street East, Stoney Creek
This family-run restaurant just feels like home. Breakfast crowds indicate it’s worth the wait on weekends (try the Real Hungry for a taste of everything) and lunch and dinner options are hearty and home-cooked. Kids 10 and under always eat free on Mondays and Tuesdays with an entree purchase.
Must-try: Comfort food specials like lasagna night on Mondays and stir fry night on Wednesdays are popular here. Patrons visit for the mouthwatering prime rib of beef dinner on weekends.
Black Forest Inn
255 King Street East
Kids can’t say no to warm pretzels and Spaetzle mac and cheese, while mom and dad can choose from the hearty menu of Bavarian staples like beef goulash and cabbage rolls. The Hamilton landmark opened in 1967 after the original owners came to Hamilton from Austria. Kids will love the Bavarian-inspired decor and servers’ outfits.
Must-try: Their famous Schnitzel is prepared many ways and inspired by different European countries – each served with plenty of sides. There’s also a very affordable lunch menu.
Earth to Table Bread Bar
258 Locke Street South
14 James Street North
Good ingredients matter at this popular restaurant, serving handcrafted food made with the finest ingredients. Find kid-friendly eats like loaded fries, mac and cheese gratin, and cheeseburgers, and much more for mature palettes.
Must-try: The creamy hummus topped with roasted chickpeas and served with pitas is one of the best around. Follow it with a stone-baked pizza for a divine meal.
255 James Street North
Everyone is welcome at “Mesa” (“table” in Spanish) where the philosophy is to “dine together like family”. The spacious and colourful Mexican restaurant is relaxed and inviting, with a kid-friendly menu loaded with nachos, tamales, burritos, and tacos.
Must-try: Mesa’s burrito is the furthest thing from a child-friendly portion but it will not disappoint. Choose from pulled chicken, ground beef, beef barbacoa, chorizo, and vegetarian.
Hamilton Farmers’ Market
35 York Boulevard
The Hamilton Farmers’ Market is full of good eats spread over two floors so everyone can get what they’re craving. Choose a bowl of ramen (Mystic Ramen), tacos (Mexican Kitchen and Latin Food and Products), freshly made sandwiches (Sam’s Cheese and Meats, Romano Cheese), or a plate of pasta (Vinnie’s Fresh Pasta Factory).
Must-try: For something sweet visit Lina’s European Pastries for an eye-popping selection of melt in your mouth cookies and pastries or Hotti Biscotti for an amazing selection of small batch biscotti.
202 Locke Street South
The vegetarian/vegan menu here includes a section for kids, too, like the kid-sized portion of their famous cauliflower wings and vegan grilled cheese. Dessert options include made-to-order crepes, local craft ice cream, and a rotating selection of baked goods (how good do Oreo stuffed cookie bars sound?).
Must-try: The house-made crispy falafel on a warm pita is simply delicious.