Looking for a bite to eat with the kids? These restaurants are sure to have something that pleases even the pickiest of eaters in your family.
1) Village Pizza - 26 Falls Road, Moodus
Village Pizza is a local staple: It's been in business since 1976! Village Pizza is your classic New England style pizza restaurant but offers so much more than just pizza. It has a complete kid's menu while also offering some more upscale as well as comfort food dishes for mom and dad. This guide's favorite? An Italian sub sandwich for lunch or the chicken Parmesan for dinner. A friendly atmosphere and casual ambiance make this a great place to enjoy a meal if you're visiting one of the local campgrounds or out for an afternoon hike.
2) The Town Tavern - 381 Town Street, East Haddam
If you find yourself in the East Haddam section of town, consider a stop in at The Town Tavern. In many ways this family-owned restaurant is similar to Village Pizza over in Moodus (just a ten minute drive!) but the full-service bar tends to make this a better spot for families with tweens and teens instead of youngsters. The breadth of dishes ranges from your everyday staples to a little more upscale, but the overall atmosphere of the restaurant is casual and comfortable through and through. Stopping by? We recommend the Honey Bee pizza, a classic white pizza topped with ricotta cheese, caramelized onions, and local honey. If dining in, ask for a little balsamic to splash on top of the pizza for a real treat!
3) Two Wrasslin Cats - 374 Town Street, East Haddam
Just across the street from The Town Tavern you'll find a blue and green building with a giant cat face on the side of it. You have arrived at the Two Wrasslin Cats Cafe, a local hot spot for social advocacy and justice. This quaint cafe offers up delicious coffee and sandwiches with a side of tolerance and love. While you may not find any live cats, the coffee is fresh and the sandwiches are made with care. Pick up a few things from the owner, Mark, to make your own picnic to enjoy at Gillette Castle or Devil's Hopyard. A nice iced coffee and a Piglrim Sandwich taste pretty great when eaten by the mists of Chapman Falls. The kids will love the whimsy and charm of the place, but their faces will light up when they see the ice cream window, open during the summer months.
4) Hillside Sweet Shoppe (Main Street, East Haddam) & Moodus Ice Cream Parlor (Lumberyard Road, Moodus)
Although not actually restaurants, the next two locations will have your kids smiling and cheering: Conveniently located in each of the villages, Hillside Sweet Shoppe and Moodus Ice Cream parlor offer up the very tasty treat that all kids crave but in unique settings. In East Haddam Village, close-by to Goodspeed and the riverfront, Hillside Sweet Shoppe boasts not only many different flavors of ice cream but also a traditional candy counter. Over in Moodus the nostalgia continues at Moodus Ice Cream Parlor, a classically styled ice cream parlor that has milk shakes that are to die for.
5) Sherlock's Grill (67 River Road, within Gillette Castle State Park)
Planning a hike at Gillette Castle? Let Sherlock's Grill pack the picnic for you! This wonderful restaurant is more than just a concession stand, offering all sorts of family-friendly favorites like chicken tenders and soft serve ice cream. But there's something for the adults too, with delicious wraps and paninis as well. Enjoy your food while overlooking Gillette Castle and the Connecticut River, or if you prefer, take it on the trail to one several picnic areas throughout the park.