While all parents appreciate the value of restaurants that cater to our kids, as much as we love the ease and the idea of them, even the best ones often fall short when it comes to marrying kid-friendly and parent-friendly dining. Vios Café and Marketplace, tucked away near Volunteer Park on Capitol Hill, has found the perfect balance between the two, offering a spot that parents love visiting, but that they don’t feel the need to book a babysitter to enjoy. And, with their newly renovated and expanded play area and always tasty Greek menu, which now includes brunch, there’s a reason why Vios hits the mark for both parents and kids in Seattle.
Cancel the babysitter
Vios Café and Marketplace is going to redefine the way you see family-friendly dining. Owner Thomas Soukakos, a dad himself, wants families to experience Vios together – he envisioned it that way and has worked hard to create an atmosphere that lends itself to family-friendly dining, without going overboard in the kid-friendly arena. Thomas beams when he talks about evenings where the restaurant is filled with families – kids going back and forth between the play area and where their parents are enjoying a glass of wine, highchairs at every table, (they have a ton of them!) and the kiddo-loving Vios staff making it all work seamlessly.
Lunch is also a very popular time to pop into Vios Café with your kids. Their Lunch Family Menu is under $20 and plenty of food for a parent and a kiddo or two to share, including choices of a couple different salads, some favorite Greek starters, like hommus and pita, and souvlaki. Lunch is served Tuesday through Friday from 11:00 am – 4:30 pm.
What’s new at Vios
There have been some fresh new changes at Vios in 2012, so if you haven’t been in a while, it’s time to plan a visit! They have added more family-size tables in the dining area, so that families who want to eat together, rather than at the longer, communal-style tables can take advantage of some time together without feeling like they are elbow-to-elbow, or sippy-cup-to-sippy-cup with other diners.
Also, the play area has been upgraded and expanded, with comfortable wood booths surrounding it, letting parents enjoy a potentially interruption-free conversation while the kids play within arm’s reach. The brunch menu at Vios is also new – served on Saturdays and Sundays from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm and featuring classic brunch-fare, but with a Greek-twist. Check out the full brunch menu, including kid’s menu items on the Vios website.
Not to be missed
Don’t ignore the marketplace aspect that is Vios Café and Marketplace – they have a fantastic to-go menu that includes desserts, pastries, salads, Greek specialties and more – perfect for those nights when even dining at one of Seattle’s most kid-friendly restaurants isn’t going to fly with your little guys. Or, grab some staples as you’re heading out the door after your meal – wine, specialty items, olives and other goodies that could easily save you a trip to the grocery store after bedtime.
Vios Café also has a location at Third Place Books in Ravenna, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus featuring a huge selection of beers in their pub section after 4:00 pm daily. Grab something to eat, then head into Third Place to do some family bookstore browsing.
Vios Café and Marketplace
903 19th Avenue East
Vios Café at Third Place Books
6504 20th Avenue Northeast
Both locations can be found online at vioscafe.com, where they also take reservations. Vios Café on Capitol Hill is closed on Mondays.
Tell us what you love about either location of Vios Café in the comments section below!
— Katie Kavulla
Photos courtesy of Vios Café and Katie Kavulla