** Update June 2021 – Tom’s Kitchen Canary Wharf is now permanently closed **
It’s always good to see Cara’s friends and their parents outside regular school times. Usual interactions are limited to a quick hi-and-bye during school drop offs or pick ups. So, to have a social event organised by fellow nursery parents, especially when it includes food at Tom’s Kitchen, is always a treat.
Date Visited: Saturday, 17th November 2018
Location: Tom’s Kitchen – 11 Westferry Circus, Canary Wharf, London E14 4HD
Getting There: Easily accessible by Underground, DLR, bus, ferry or car. If by car, there’s ample parking underneath Waitrose or Westferry Circus.
Cost: £55 for our share of brunch and drinks (for three of us).
Review of Tom’s Kitchen:
We’ve been to Tom’s Kitchen, Canary Wharf a few times now. Food is always fresh, service is efficient and friendly, and the kid’s play area on weekends is always helpful!
On Saturday, we arrived slightly late due to Cara’s morning ballet, with some families just beginning to enjoy their meals and drinks. Cara headed straight for the play area whilst I ordered some grub. Eggs on toast for Cara, Fish & Chips for her Mum, and a seasonal berry pancake for myself.
Even though we were a large group (roughly 8 families) and arriving at different times, the service was attentive and speedy. After taking the order, it was about a 10-15 minute wait for the food and drinks to arrive. Unfortunately for Cara, she developed a couple of mouth ulcers which made it a little painful to eat, so after a few bites of the eggs and toast, she was done. Luckily, her Mum’s fish & chips were fresh and tasty, so they were able to share that. Although at one point, Cara complained about something being spicy – not sure if this was the salt seasoning from a chip hitting her ulcer.
With Cara and her Mum’s food looking nice and tasty, the same thing couldn’t really be said for my berry pancake. I was expecting a small stack of 2 or 3 fluffy pancakes. Some fresh berries on top, perhaps fresh cream or maple syrup. However, what arrived was more akin to a teacake with a blueberry sauce on top. The first few mouthfuls were alright, but I wasn’t able to eat more than half of it as it became slightly dry and repetitive. Not the best for £9.50. Shame, probably should’ve gone with the Turkish eggs as they looked yum. At least the coffee was alright.
It’s probably not a brunch I would visit every week, but it is a nice place to hold a large meet up. Service was attentive and helpful, with the ability to split the bill when families left at different times.
There’s a small room near the kitchen (slightly dangerous when there’s kids running back and forth from the table to the room) that has some toys to keep the kids busy. It’s not the largest or newest collection of goodies, but it’s enough to buy some time while waiting for the food.
Outside the restaurant, there’s a nice area with a fountain. Cara and her friends had fun collecting leaves and throwing them into the fountain, or watching them float down to the drain. Unlikely the maintenance crew will appreciate the leaves clogging up the drain. Evidence that Cara enjoyed the brunch was her crashing on my shoulder while walking back to the car. However, if your child is still full of energy, the London Docklands Museum is only a short-walk away.
Burn Time: 3 out of 5 – Spent a good couple of hours there, which is quite good for a restaurant. The play area and her friends definitely helped the extra playtime.
Value: 3.5 out of 5 – Decent options and pricing for the kid’s menu, and adult mains aren’t too pricey. Maybe just stay away from the adult pancake option.
Overall: 3.5 out of 5 – Family-friendly brunch location with decent food for both adults and kids. The play area is handy to keep the kids busy, and the fountain outside allows you to mix it up.