Surprised by Nando’s

Initially we avoided Nando’s, not having been there in years and vaguely remembering as somewhere the youth of today go for chicken and chips. It clearly is more up-market than I remembered and I realise now that it’s not somewhere I’m going to feel the need to scan the room for other somewhat ‘normal’ parents to feel ok about my restaurant choice. This place is actually convenient, seems fresh and is perfect for kids. No, there aren’t a whole lot of green leafy vegetables, but why do I continue to kid myself that Weasel would eat them anyways?! Middle class parenting anxieties are a blast.

So what dragged us in the first time? And when I say dragged, I mean gave us an excuse to go get some tasty chicken without guilt? A friend’s birthday at the Glasshouse Street location in central London, one almost entirely in the basement. (There is a lift, which whined and drove one in our party mad, he must have had some bat-like hearing because I seemed totally deaf to it!) We would have passed it by to be honest thinking it was inaccessible for prams, but thankfully there was even space at the bottom to park quite a few near the stairs. It was a little cramped, so no way we could have sat a sleeping baby in a pram next to a table though.

The Festival Place, Basingstoke location , where the above photos are from, is slightly more spaced out (and less claustrophobic), but of course it was in Amazingstoke, so that’s your trade-off. This time Weasel had chicken and mash and actually ate it! The key was leaving the big, pointy, deadly toothpick in the chicken, making it dangerous and exciting. We learned our lesson from removing the stick in London (which then became the most coveted thing ever for the next hour and a half) and ordering the corn on the cob that she refused to acknowledge the existence of.

One added joy is the unlimited free frozen yogurt of some kind (possibly apple and blackberry?), which Weasel hates and I get to try to shovel into my gob without the attentive waiters noticing. This is the sort of parent benefit that I live for.


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