Jamin and I have a confession: We love eating out! It is more of an activity than a hunger thing. We love the conversation, we love relaxing, we love trying new food.
We are also terrible cooks. Neither of us have a love of cooking or an interest in learning how. We stumble along in the kitchen with standard home cooked meals - mac and cheese, burgers, roast chicken, etc. It feels good for us to eat food that others have prepared. While we do go out often on our own, every once in a while we like to treat the kids.
Our favorite spot in town to bring 4 kids is Bella Bistro.
The atmosphere is casual and relaxing. The staff are friendly and approachable. The food is delicious. What more could you ask for?
We usually head to dinner on the early side (aka. 4:30 to 5:00pm) to avoid the rush and pain of bringing 4 kids into a restaurant.
Bringing kids into a restaurant is always daunting. You never know how understanding the staff are going to be with noise levels, messes and special requests. This is why we love Bella Bistro. We never have to worry about any of that. We usually get a large size booth that miraculously is always open when we arrive.
As creatures of habit, our meal at Bella Bistro is almost always the same. I love that I can count on the same delicious foods and quality each time - never to be disappointed.
Our meal typically starts out with a couple of milkshakes that we share between all of us. The kids usually go for strawberry or chocolate, whereas Jamin and I prefer vanilla.
As for the meal, we order an Americano pizza for the kids to share -pepperoni, tomato sauce and mozzarella. We keep it simple in the restaurant to please everyone and to avoid outbursts of anger from adding mushrooms or peppers or whatever food of the day the children have chosen to despise. At home I make pizzas with whatever ingredients I feel like. I hold nothing back due to their dislike. If they don't like the ingredients on my pizza then they can go hungry that evening. But for real, if they don't like it and complain about it, they don't eat! I don't force them to eat any foods they don't like, but I also don't change my menu or meal plan based on their preferences. I also don't make meals based on their individuals preferences.
Jamin and I typically order the Bella Burger. Jamin will order fries with his meal (to share with me of course) and I love the beet salad. The Bella Burger rshares the most resemblance to my favorite hometown burger that I grew up on (FYI if you are ever in South Ottawa check out Burger & Shake - a lovely family burger shop that has been around for ages and in my opinion has the best burgers that I have ever tasted, with Bella's Burger coming in a close second).
We hardly ever offer dessert for our children - saved only for special occasions. To keep our costs down eating out the children don't often get dessert at restaurants. Though they do get very excited about the free candy they get with the bill. Usually though I will sneak myself a carrot cake - they have what I consider to be the best carrot cake in town!
I do hope that you can find the time to enjoy this lovely restaurant in Kingston.