I got duped y’all.
Sunday morning Mom and Dad were all ‘remember the Dakota? Get ready! We’re going dancing Henry!’ We haven’t been to the Dakota in months, and as soon as they mentioned it I was jonesing for some bluegrass brunch. And then … my Grandma and Grandpa had gotten there early to get us a prime spot, and they called us to let us know the wait was going to be over an hour for a table. Boo. I think you can all imagine that the little sis was not going to be waiting patiently in a brunch line for any length of time longer than 5 minutes. Me on the other hand, well … :) In any case, my Dakota dreams were sorely dashed.
So we agreed to part ways right as our fam approached Queen West in the car. Mom and Dad parked and thought we could try for a spot at Swan or the County General, but alas, foiled again. We ended up peering in the window of a new-ish spot, Parkette, and decided to give it a try when we saw an empty table just begging for us to sit down. (Please forgive me for the less than stellar pics folks … Mom had forgotten the camera so it was iPhone or bust.)
Warning: as it’s name suggests (pretty cute actually, as it’s a stone’s throw from Trinity Bellwoods), this place is pretty tiny. We had driven so didn’t need a stroller spot, but if we had there really isn’t much room. Halfway through our meal another kid arrived with his Dad and stroller in tow, and it was a pretty tight squeeze to make them fit. I think they actually removed a chair so the stroller could take it’s place at their table. So file that advice away if you’re not into eating where you roll.
A highchair for Stella (standard wood, clean, all parts in working order) arrived at our table within seconds, and I opted to flex my big kid muscles and sit next to Mom in a regular chair. The parentals ordered quickly because these days Stella can be a tad unpredictable … she’s become a huge fan of performing incredible feats of escape from various highchairs, so we’ve learned to act fast. While we were waiting for our food to arrive, I happily devoured the fruit plate they had brought to the table. Think: the brunch version of a bread basket. Blackberries, blueberries, watermelon and honeydew … yum. I gave Stella a few blueberries, but otherwise it was mine all mine … ha.
Now here’s where things get … iffy? Don’t get me wrong, Parkette was lovely, but Mom and Dad had both ordered the Traditional Breakfast (scrambled eggs, bacon, toast) and it took an inordinate amount of time to arrive. The people next to us, who had been seated AND ordered after us, got their food before we did. Also, it was scrambled eggs folks. And you’d think they’d maybe want to hurry things along upon seeing two fidgety toddlers at our table. Let me put it this way: by the time Mom and Dad got their meals, Stella and I were both well beyond done eating and ready to move onto bigger and better things. Luckily Dad had thought to ask for the bill when the food arrived, so as soon as they had scarfed (mighty quickly I might add) we packed up and hit the road.
Overall, I’d say pass on Parkette if you’ve got smalls in tow. And maybe it’s because of the added meal ambiance of their plus two, but Mom and Dad said the food was … fine, but not worth the $30+ for something they could have made easily at home. Plus, call me crazy, but we got more than a few looks from neighbouring hipsters (don’t get me wrong, the servers seemed happy to have us) … so perhaps not the most kid-friendly option out there, if only for it’s locale. East side all the way baby … (I wish we lived in Oakland … East Bay all the way sounds so much better. :)