We’ve all been there – a gloomy Sunday morning, a light drizzle, accompanied with unpleasant gusts of wind that try to barge their way in your flat, killing off any desire you might have had to go out and let kids run around until they collapse in your loving arms earlier than usual in the evening with the words “I love you, Dad”. You know the feeling, the one that makes you want to pull out your washed out “World’s #1 dad” t-shirt that you use mostly for work around the house lately and proudly show off to your mom and dad over Skype. Alas, sigh, this does not seem to be one of those days. The guy upstairs (you know, the one pulling all the strings) probably thinks it’s funny to have your kids get up even earlier than usual on such depressing days (think 4:20 am) and wake up the entire neighbourhood because you don’t have a clue what they want for breakfast even when they scream “scriiieeeeeel” for the tenth time, already irritated like h***. Sugar. Just give them sugar, a little voice whispers in my head. Frosties, choco pops, whatever, just to get them to stop screaming because your brain is a goo as it is even without all this added pressure.
As an added bonus, your missus is still sound asleep as Mum’s night out turned out to be a huge success, as she declared a bit too loud at 1 am. So, what do you do, hot shot, what do you do? Well, you COULD make a big fuss about how you are tired as well, wake up your sleeping beauty and admit defeat OR take the next big step in your life (after moving from your mum’s house all those years ago), pack your bags, get the kids in the car, drive to the nearest children friendly cafe and get those bonus points flowing. And this is exactly what this series of articles, that will hopefully become a regular addition to the Mums and Tots of Warsaw website, is all about.
Which brings us to Klubokawiarnia Kolonia. On a slightly depressing Sunday, not much different from the one described above, we’ve agreed to meet with our friends at the coffee shop, already with this review in mind. Hmmm, what should I check first? Of course, is there parking? There is, and lots of it, but Warsaw is a lot emptier over the weekend, so I have no idea what happens here on an idle Wednesday. As we approach the place (after my daughter has a fit as I don’t take the hulajnoga from the trunk fast enough because it got tangled with the darn trolley), I think to myself:”Well, this looks…unimpressive.” And the feeling does not improve as we approach the entrance that seems more like a balcony door than a proper entrance to the first place I am ever suppose to rate. I lean over to my wife to give her the “Geez, love, and you told me this is a cool place?” look, but her counter look reminds me I just might regret this, so I just smile.
But, boy oh boy, does my mood change as we enter the establishment. Heeeey, this looks nice! Wooden floor, cosy interior, children’s corner, highchairs, cool lighting and the definition of cool – menu on the blackboard. I realise I already like this place. I’ve had my “breakfast” at around six a.m. so the growling of my stomach reminds me that it might be time to have my second breakfast. Jajecznica (scrambled eggs)? Sure, why not, we will all have that. The relatively friendly staff precedes the eggs with a couple of baskets of white, black and wholewheat bread with a couple of chunks of butter that are a sure winner with the kids. Added bonus? They are free of charge. Yes, even if you ask for more. Jajecznica is just what the doctor ordered and after downing a few gulps of ice cold Coke Zero (as #DadBod is still officially not confirmed as the latest trend for the summer, I still need to watch my calories) I am ready to explore what we have here. Just above our table are a couple of book shelves with tons of children books, just in case you are one of those lucky parents, whose kids like to read. For mine, books gain importance ONLY when it’s bed time. Then we have to read the long ones, really slow and look at all the details of the pictures. Not now, though. So, what else? There is a small IKEA table for the kids with a couple of chairs, some accessories for drawing, toys, cars, board games and a doll house that just blows away my daughter and her Macedonian friend that just arrived. OK, we are safe for 10 minutes, but what then? I lean to the other side of the place and notice a BEAUTIFUL patio with a couple of tables and a BIG playground for kids. BINGO! Now, obviously the staff fails to wipe off the rain from last night but put a couple of parents together, a handful of handkerchiefs and situation is quickly under control.
“Trampoline!!!!!!” is the sound I hear as my brain shrieks to the high pitch of my daughter’s voice. Kleenex. Wipe. Dispose. Repeat. I get my 5 minutes of rest and just as I start to contemplate how cool it would be to get together with a couple of dads here on a sunny summer day and perhaps even down a cheeky one, the love of my life delivers our toddler because “he really wanted to go out”, only to return immediately indoor to catch up on gossip with her friend, leaving the proverbially negligent dads out with four kids. Sure, why not. As the older ones jump on the trampoline, the younger ones walk in and out of the sand-based houses for little people and play the cutest game of peek-a-boo I have witnessed in a while. Trust me, if there is only why reason why you should visit the place, it is the outside playground. Completely closed-off from the street, nice, cosy and full of sand.
“Number 2, number 2!” screams my older one and that reminds me that I need to check if there is a diaper changing station in the the place. As my mind is goo (did I mention this already? I forget, my mind is really goo) from waking up numerous times during the night, I do my best goldfish impression and forget that the very next second. Realizing that right now while writing the review, a “for fu*** sake” thought runs through my mind until my wife gives me one of her’s “what did you forget now” looks, only to reassure me that there is one. Wait, what is this, a moment of serenity? Older one on the toilet, younger one playing? Let me just quickly check the starting eleven for the Premier Leag…too late, I am already being tugged away to make sand castles. Darn it. Well, at least their website says that they have wi-fi. I guess I will just have to trust them.
As I put the Sunday brunch on my credit card (am I the only one who never has cash these days?), I look around and think to myself that this is one helluva place and we will be back. Recommended. If only they had a bit more to offer in the food department…then, well then they would be on five stars…although, to be honest, their spaghetti Bolognese will probably make most of your kids happy…
With this we wrap up our inaugural review. We would be grateful for your comments – do you agree with the review or are we completely off? What are the elements you have missed? Let us know and we will look to improve. Until next time!
Address: Łęczycka 2, 02-065 Warszawa
Phone: 661 064 944
Note: Closed from December 1 to April 1
Reviewed by: Matej
What is Dads&Tots of Warsaw Eat’n’play? If you have kids, you will always appreciate a good children-friendly place to get the kids (and yourself) out of the house. Since we found no comprehensive list of such places for Warsaw, a group of us dads decided to make one on their own. We want to offer ideas of where to go, what you can expect to see or get there, whether they have baby seats, diaper changing stations, children-friendly menus, you name it. And if you want to recommend a place to visit, be sure to drop us an email at email@example.com.