Every parent knows how taking kids to a restaurant can be such a drama-filled event. Children find the thought of eating out in a new environment either exciting or stressful. Those happy about it wouldn’t stop ‘exploring’ the restaurant, which often means running around with complete disregard of other customers and servers balancing food trays. Those who don’t like eating while surrounded by strangers in an unfamiliar setting could start crying or throwing tantrums.
If your child behaves perfectly when you go to restaurants, you’re one of the lucky exceptions! For the rest of the parents out there, though, you can use some tips, especially if you’re visiting the best Chinese restaurant in Houston:
Get Ready to Distract Them
For most kids, a Chinese restaurant is a strange place with lots of new things to discover. The food is different; the ambiance is not the same as what they’re used to, even the utensils are not the same! Before your kid gets overwhelmed by all the newness around them, get ready to catch their attention with some elements that would interest them so they won’t run around and make a scene. For instance, you can teach them how to use the chopsticks correctly. You can also ask for fortune cookies, and the kids might find it exciting to see a special message inside those treats.
Order Kid-Friendly Dishes
Your kids probably won’t enjoy the heat and kick that a traditional Chinese dish offers, so you have to make sure to order some dishes with milder flavors. Egg rolls and dumplings are always a big hit with the little ones. If they love soup, you should order either a wonton soup or an egg drop soup. If they’re more familiar with pasta, you might want to order something like Lo Mein, which they can eat in the same way. You could also get them an order of Moo Goo Gai Pan – a serving of chicken cutlets and veggies in a light sauce.
Have a Quick Lesson on Etiquette
If you have older kids who can understand instruction well, you can share with them some of the things that kids and adults should do when they are in a Chinese restaurant to show respect:
- Do not place chopsticks straight up in a rice bowl because this could remind servers of their burning incense for the dead and is seen as bad manners in Chinese.
- Use chopsticks properly; pick up food and not spear it like barbeque.
- Never use chopsticks as drumsticks or as sparring swords, as this could be annoying to other diners.
- Make sure to take leftovers home.
Help Them Become Familiar with Dim Sum
The kids might not be too keen on the idea of Chinese food because they don’t know much about it. Before taking your children out for a dine-in experience, you might want to consider ordering some Dim Sum and introducing them to your little ones at home. This way, the unfamiliar surrounding factor is taken out, and they’d be more open to trying Chinese food.
Serve the best dumplings, congees, egg rolls, rice noodle rolls, and bao that they surely can’t resist. Once they’re familiar with the food and they love it, you can rest assured that when you go to a Chinese restaurant, your children are less likely to misbehave because they already know what food to expect.
By eating at a Chinese restaurant in Houston regularly, your kids will soon develop a sense of how they should act when they’re out to eat. Remember, it is often the unfamiliarity of the place and the food that’s making them uneasy or overly excited. By following the tips above, you can make your dine-in experience memorable for a good reason.
Ocean Palace serves the best Chinese food in Houston. Whether you’re looking for savory seafood dishes or craving for some dim sum, we’ve got you covered. Order our dim sum and kitchen menu items for you and your family today!