There aren’t many weekend activities as simple or as satisfying as going out for nice brunch. But a leisurely mid-morning meal can quickly turn loony when you invite children to the grown-up table. Fortunately, wherever you are in Alberta, a family-friendly brunch restaurant—with kid-appropriate menu items and ambience—isn’t so far away.
You may want to skip this retro resto if you’re bearing very young children, as there tends to be a bit of a wait for the small booths. But once you’re inside, the lively atmosphere, throwback decor and highly regarded comfort fare—including pancakes made to look like everything from Darth Vader to Stampede mascot Harry the Horse—are sufficient salve for any family members who’ve had to delay gratification.
CULINA CAFÉ AT THE MUTTART
Reserve a table at this airy, modern spot for a family repast before or after exploring Edmonton’s renowned Muttart Conservatory. The well-curated brunch menu fosters teachable moments for proactive parents: many of the café’s ingredients are sourced from local producers. It even uses greens and herbs grown in the conservatory’s own greenhouses!
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If you enjoy your eggs with a side of history, Fort Calgary hosts a weekly brunch every Sunday. Grownups can enjoy an eggs benny with lobster and tarragon, while kids down French toast piled high with whipped cream. Work off your meal by touring the fort (museum admission is included with brunch): children can try on an authentic Mountie uniform or spend some time in the 19th-century jail.
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ROCKY MOUNTAIN FLATBREAD COMPANY
If your troupe favours a savoury brunch, this Canmore pizza parlour is the place to visit. Children can work up an appetite in the play area while waiting for their tasty pie. And make a return trip on a Tuesday—between 4 and 6 p.m. kids can roll the dough and add toppings to their own pizza. (Note: this Tuesday “family night” promotion is not offered from June to September.)
Boasting dozens of locations throughout the province, this Calgary-founded franchise has been serving eager-to-please diner fare—plus a great many all-day breakfast options—for more than 50 years. Child-sized versions of omelettes, french toast, pancakes and more are all $5.99. Tykes can also sign up for the Smitty’s Kids’ Club, which offers savings including coupons for a free meal on your birthday.
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Casual and cozy, this Cajun/Creole restaurant in downtown Banff has a massive breakfast menu—with many gluten-free options—that’s available until 2 p.m. every day. The whimsically minded in your family will enjoy ordering the main menu’s cheekily named French toast options like the Oreo Cookie Monster or Chocolate Chipmunk, while the under-10 set can choose from the easy-to-handle likes of cinnamon sugar waffle balls and French toast fingers. Kids seeking something a little more savoury can request lunch-menu options a corn dog or mac ‘n’ cheese.
This breakfast-and-lunch chain’s three Edmonton locations mean your family is never too far from a tasty and nutritious meal. Children have lots of options here, thanks to the variety of just-sweet-enough crepe, French toast and waffle offerings. Parents can rest easy knowing that many dishes come piled high with fresh fruit (and the fact that nutritional information for every menu item is available online.)
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