As parents, we all know that finding a place to take the whole family out to eat is the ultimate discovery! Our NSM Discoverer Emma Bannouri took her children to The Ranch bistro for some family fun on a Sunday afternoon and was thrilled to find plenty of entertainment for the kids (like face-painting!) delicious food and much more.
Like most families, when we take the kids out to a restaurant it can be a pretty stressful experience. Sometimes, they will happily sit and do some colouring in while we wait for our meal….but other times, they can be found crawling around under the table before we’ve even had a chance to order!
For this reason, we usually have our monthly extended family catch up at my mum’s house. But not this time! When the opportunity came up to give my mum a break from the cooking, and visit a family-friendly venue with so many great kids activities on offer, I jumped at the chance!
The Venue: The Ranch Bistro
Getting to The Ranch is simple, as it’s close to public transport; but for families a huge bonus is the convenient parking (there’s over 300 spots including 150 undercover parks under the Dan Murphy’s bottle shop!)
Put simply, the Ranch bistro is enormous (which is a blessing, as it means no lining up with squirming kids or knocking elbows with other families)! The space is divided into sections, including outdoor seating, and a separate area for families who want to sit near the playground.
The room itself is bright with lots of natural light, and tastefully decorated with stylish modern decor. There are lots of booths, and larger tables for families. Because of the spacing and the large room, you don’t feel like you are intruding on the table next to you and there is easily enough space for high chairs and prams so you can get around the table!
We were started out seated in the family dining area but when it became a bit noisy for us (with another large family group), a very helpful and understanding staff member moved us to the main dining room and set us up with a large table near the arcade game room. Then we were in prime position for the face paint and crazy scientist show, so when you visit snap up one of these spots for a front row seat!
The Kids Activities
In addition to the playground, colouring in, kids iPads and arcade games room that are always available at The Ranch, they put on a bunch of extra activities every Sunday to keep the kids entertained 9and it worked!). There was:
- Face Painting
- Art & Craft Corner
- Jumping Castle
- Professional Entertainers & Kids Shows
- Petting Zoo
- Reptile Farm
On the Sunday we visited, my daughters were queuing up to have their face painted by Greer from Faceoff Sydney within moments of her setting up. Greer is a makeup artist and this was honestly the best face paint I have ever seen. She was so quick and kept the line moving but her work is such high quality, you can see from the photos for yourself!
The kids entertainment Sunday was a crazy scientist, it was fun to see all the children getting involved with the experiments and he kept them all riveted for well over an hour, so parents really do get a proper break and can have a conversation without being interrupted!
What’s on the menu?
The Ranch menu features a range of classic pub dishes like burgers, steaks, pizzas and parmies, all classics that are done really well and made with tasty fresh ingredients. The portions tend to be on the generous side and are very reasonably priced with mains starting at from $17.50.
For those with special dietary requirements, there are quite a few yummy vegetarian options such as the black quinoa, chia and avocado bowl ($16) or haloumi burger ($17.50) and they offer gluten free burger buns and pizza bases making almost half their menu GF.
The adults at our table ordered the smoked scallops ($18.50), Cobb salad ($19.50), chorizo and chicken schnitzel ($24.50), pulled pork burger ($19.50) and rump steak ($22.50). All of our meals were fresh, well cooked, chips were crunchy (not greasy) and the salads were filling.
The kids menu has five options (all $10) including pizza, burger, pasta, healthy fish bowl or a hotdog. And even better, kids also eat for free on Saturday lunch and all day Sunday! The portion sizes were good and the meals were tasty. My kids demolished their bolognese and chicken burger.
The Ranch is a great family-friendly venue where parents can relax while their kids run around and are entertained by a range of different activities. Having a venue where no one bats an eyelid when your 3 year old chucks a tantrum really takes the stress out of family dining.
Our extended family group was well catered for with loads of different options on the menu and because you order and pay at the counter you don’t have the awkward task of splitting the bill at the end of your meal.
We will definitely be back next month for our family catch up!
- Address: Cnr Epping & Herring Rds, North Ryde, NSW, 2122
- Phone: (02) 9887 2411
- Special features: Kids Eat Free sessions, kids entertainment and activities (face painting, jumping castle and more)
- Parking: Entrance is from Herring Road where there is plenty of parking available
- Opening Hours:
- Continental Buffet Breakfast: Mon-Fri 6.30am-9.30am & Sat-Sun 7am to 8am
- Lunch & Dinner: Every Day 11:30am – 9:30pm