Eataboo was on my list of to-visit places ever since I heard of it.
The reason is obvious: it is a children's restaurant, and anyone who has children knows how much these hyperactive little beings love and seek entertainment. :)
That is why we found ourselves outside Eataboo one fine night a couple of months ago, on 6th Lane, Zamzama. It is located next to the children's clothing shop called Mushrooms.
Seems like a wonderland even from outside doesn't it? I felt my childhood revisited.
Entry fee is charged per person at Rs 350.
Inside there is an area where children can see themselves on this flat screen television when they seat themselves before it. Novel idea!
The place is in fact loaded with the latest technological gadgets - kiddie style, and kid-sized furniture.
The roof and walls are done in different colors and designs.
Each table has a unique design on a base of white.
Wired iPads with handles. :)
Lights in the shape of helicopters. Which child wouldn't be enthralled?
The stairs leading upstairs. Yes, there is more!
The small upper play area. Incidentally, the low ceiling of this area makes it difficult for an adult to get in. It is only for little ones to play around in, and is well-stocked with toys.
It also has a flat screen television with kiddy-size chairs.
And a huge stuffed toy.
More screens.....it is the age of screens, isn't it? The children will want to do what they see adults doing all the time - in this case, tapping on screens!
Windows overlooking the dining area downstairs are done in submarine/ship style.
The walls of the staircase leading to the small upper play area are done with an underwater world theme.
Hygiene thankfully seems to be an important issue in the eyes of the management.
I always appreciate a box of good tissues at the dining table.
There are some new items on the menu.
A wall-mounted television set.
Some tables have these boards attached on them. Education in a fun manner.
An infant feeding chair was also available.
Even Duplo stuff was available for play on a table nearby.
Which child wouldn't love to have such an iPad to play with, unrestricted?
(I'm not endorsing everything you see on the screen of the iPad in the above picture, though)
Now for the food. This is the only area in which this otherwise fairytale-like restaurant lacks - quite severely.
French Fries for Rs 150.
(Slightly burned) star-shaped Chicken Nuggets for Rs 300.
Creamy Chicken Pasta for Rs 375.
Any amateur chef can make better pasta, in my opinion. Plus, there was hardly any "chicken" in it.
Mango milkshake for Rs 185.
To give credit where it is due, this tasted out of this world! We went to Eataboo in July, which is the season of succulent mangoes in our city.
We liked the milkshake so much, and it was so little in quantity, that we ordered another, chocolate-flavored one.
Chicky Rice for Rs. 275
Every item was a huge disappointment in terms of quantity.
Perhaps they serve meals for only kid-sized stomachs? Even then the food is grossly over-priced!
Strawberry milkshake Rs 185
You can see that almost one-third of the glass is empty. Makes you wonder?!
Anyhow, children loved the little umbrellas on these glasses.
Mine took them home for creative play with their dolls.
Thankfully, the food charges are included in the Rs 350 they charge per person on entry into the restaurant.
So for 4 people, the entry charges amount to Rs 1400 (no difference in rates between adults and kids).
Our food bill exceeded this amount by Rs 220 (lesson learnt - parents should not have dinner at this restaurant. Eat at home and then take your kids to Eataboo, where they can avail enough food for the entry charges.)
Before leaving, the staff gave my children these coupons/vouchers with which they could each "purchase" a free toy.
A child can pick one from any of these items (stickers, erasers, masks, earrings, hairbands, toys etc.) for the 50-rupee voucher. Nice gimmick. Will keep the kiddies coming back for more. :)
Verdict: The owners have made a considerable investment into this great idea for a children's play-place cum restaurant, which should be lauded. My children did not want to leave, and kept insisting that we come here again.
That being said, the owners and management staff should really step up to improve the food and dining aspect of the (cough) "restaurant" (given that a "restaurant" is originally a place primarily meant for just that: food, drink, dining - satisfying the palate and satiating the hunger).
The service was also quite pathetic in that, each mini-sized, overpriced item on the menu took a disappointingly long time to reach the table, and, even though it was otherwise alright in taste (with the exception of the milkshakes, which were delightfully tasty!), its quantity was almost a joke.
I really hope, as a parent of 3 little ones, that Eataboo improves its food and service, because I would love to bring my children here again.
Unless that happens, however, I am afraid the restaurant will live up to its name i.e. its "Eat-a" aspect will receive "a-boo"! :P