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Restaurants are for eating, not playing

Some mothers and fathers seem to think that, when it comes to dining out, ‘family friendly’ means you can check in your parental responsibilities at the front desk

A few years ago my wife and I went for Sunday brunch in a ‘family friendly’ south London restaurant. Footloose and child-free, we were ignorant of the implications of that innocent phrase.

Children ran around. Children screamed. Children ran around screaming. One child banged on the wooden floor with a plastic toy, over and over and over again.

It wasn’t a one-off experience. At a hotel in Worcestershire (family friendly, of course), we watched as a pair of whooping children did laps of the public rooms, at cocktail hour, dragging a wheeled horse behind them. A third little darling went around the elegant lounge blowing out every tea light.

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About Delicious Magazine

Ottolenghi is back! Find his new recipes in our October issue, along with the best things to eat this autumn including Hugh F-W’s cheesy gratin, Atul Kochhar's home cooking and easy one-pot meals. There’s also a Mexican chilli cook-off, proper bao buns and a foolproof beef wellington. On the sweet side, get stuck into John Whaite's rich chocolate cake, a frangipane crumble and our ultimate biscuit collection – better put the kettle on…
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