REVIEW | Child-Friendly Dining at Thyme Café – Broomhill, Sheffield
Why I love Thyme Café
Thyme Café is the perfect balance between eating in a nice establishment, without feeling awkward for taking small children. Great food, where the standard does not drop for the kid’s menu. Loads of tasty choices on the menu, enough to keep you wanting to go back several times over!!
Worth paying a babysitter?
Nope, definitely take the little sweethearts with you. Even better if you go throughout the week, when kids under 8 eat for free.
Nice staff. Hearty fresh food that is deeply satisfying. Relaxed atmosphere, that welcomes children but still feels like a treat to eat there!
Value for money: (9 out of 10)
If you are looking for a good standard of food, you will not complain at the prices. We felt it was reasonable.
Setting the scene:
It’s been a while since we’ve eaten out with the girls. I think most parents erase that phase from their memory of when babies are fully weaned yet do not have an ounce of table manners. We are not beyond that yet, by any stretch of reality, but the twins have turned one and will eat pretty much anything they can get their greedy paws on (including sand, wood chippings, bird poo, you know, the standard outdoor offerings) so to expand my repertoire of reviews, I thought it was time to bring the full gang along for a review.
Thyme Café is well established and has a good reputation for food, so I was feeling a little anxious about taking three kids under five for food, but the twins got a solid afternoon nap in and we were eating late afternoon to beat the onset of hanger, so we were in a prime position to give it a go. If I managed to finish the meal without food in my hair and all over my clothes I was going to see it as a successful outing.
I usually get a gut instinct for if I will warm to restaurant staff or not, there is a definite fine line between being friendly and likeable, and friendly and annoying. I liked the staff at Thyme Café. Accommodating, attentive but not annoying. We were nicely welcomed, given a decent size table to accommodate the brood and two high-chairs were whipped out to pen in double trouble.
Drinks ordered, we quickly moved onto browsing the extensive menu, as we knew our ticking-time-bomb children would stop it being a long, leisurely (and certainly not boozey) Sunday afternoon affair.
The kid’s menu had all the classics you want to see. Fish and chips, tick. Mac and cheese, tick…. spaghetti, sausages etc. Quick and easy decisions for the girls, so Emily cracked on with some colouring, and Warren and I took to browsing the menus whilst drip-feeding cheerios to the twins to keep them occupied.
Three menus were on offer; the Sunday roast menu, the specials and then the daily blackboard with many options that could be a starter or a main course. There was so much choice, but more importantly so much I wanted to eat, it really was hard to decide.
The shell-on prawns I had to start were delish. Definitely not first-date food, yanking heads and peeling off legs but was totally worth it. Seasoned well and a big stack of them, I was quite happy to tuck in and join the twins in making a load of mess. The home-made pesto dipping sauce was incredible, which I ate with the rocket rather than the prawns as there was too many nice flavours that I wanted to enjoy separately.
Warren also opted for a seafood starter, with a special of breaded scallops. I know they were good because he didn’t offer to let me try one!!
The girls’ main courses came out with our starters. Emily opted for fish and chips, which was an impressive size for a kids dish, and the twins shared a portion of mac and cheese with garlic bread and a sausage chips and beans. The standard of the kid’s food was on par with ours, good quality and fresh ingredients.
I did think we could get the girls food to stretch a little longer than it did, but it tasted great and no word of a lie, my just-turned-one-year-old twins polished off the two dishes in ten minutes. Leah was gripping onto the mac and cheese dish whilst shoveling every little morsel of pasta she could find. Erin was also eating at the speed of light, but took some time-out to lob a few chips around to decorate the floor.
Luckily our main courses came out quickly. Warren opted for the special of pan-fried duck breast, fondant potato, braised red cabbage with green beans and orange and thyme sauce. Duck was cooked to perfection, slightly blue, just how Warren likes it. It was a decent portion of food without being overfacing.
Meanwhile I opted for some comfort food on the specials; buttermilk fried chicken thighs, house slaw, sweet potato wedges and sriracha sauce. Please tell me I’m not the only one obsessed with sriracha sauce?! I have a tendency to throw it onto all sorts of food, but it really did taste great with the Thyme café fried chicken. The thigh was huge and conveniently didn’t include the bone, the chicken was super soft and the crispy fried outside was salty with a touch of spicy seasoning. Throw in the creamy slaw and soft and spicy seasoned wedges, it was the type of food I would absolutely pick on a wet cold winters day to make me feel better about myself.
Annoyingly, Leah made it very clear she’d had enough and was getting a little too vocal for my liking. And although no-one else seemed to be batting an eye lid at the one year practicing for the terrible-two’s awards, we didn’t feel comfortable making everyone else have to listen.
But when the very nice member of staff came over and suggested takeaway pudding, I literally leapt at the suggestion. So off we trotted with a plum frangipan and a sticky toffee pudding in little takeaway tins, and the accompanying sauces in disposable coffee cups.
The sticky toffee sponge was fluffy and the sauce was rich and salty. Sticky toffee is a pudding I just don’t get tired of, and this was a good one and could easily make the trip to Thyme Café for coffee and indulgent cake on an afternoon.
The texture of the frangipan was completely different to the sponge. The nuts were not finely ground so gave the pudding a really nice stodgy, delicious texture. The crispy pastry base and tart plums, accompanied by a crème anglaise was delightful.
Despite our visit being cut short, the food was really enjoyable and the café atmosphere was welcoming and civilized. It felt like a small achievement to get out with the girls to a nice place to eat. The staff stood out for me, they made us feel welcomed and didn’t bat an eye-lid at the twin trail that had been left behind. And the food tasted brill.
Thank you for having us Thyme Café, we will without a doubt be back to eat with you again soon!
To find out more visit: www.thymecafe.co.uk
This is a Girl About review. I was invited by the management to dine at their restaurant free of charge in exchange for an honest and frank review. All my opinions are my own and in no way have they been swayed by their kind invite. Girl About reviews are always 100% honest. We only publish reviews that, for the most part, are positive.
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