School holidays are here and it's going to be a long six weeks me thinks! Quite a few coffees (and probably wines) may need to be consumed to survive each and every day. My plan is to have a few of those coffees in cafes that are located in a park or next to a playground so that the boys can run amok whilst I imbibe my caffeine fix in relative peace. We've got off to a brilliant start with our first cafe - Greenshades at Galston.
Greenshades is located in a nursery at Galston in the beautiful North Western Hills of Sydney. When you arrive you will find ample parking on both the street and the attached car park. The entrance to Greenshades is dominated by the nursery and impressive large garden ornaments. The boys were in awe of the two dog statues and were very keen for us to take them home as guard dogs. I wasn't so sure as I thought they would freak out the other neighbourhood hounddogs just a wee bit.
After I dragged the boys away from their new found pets we entered the house that is home to the Greenshades Cafe. Inside, rooms have been set up to accommodate tables of various sizes. The interior has a lovely atmosphere and in Winter an open fire adds to the charm of this space. But if you are dining with kidlets you need to sit outside. The large outdoor dining area has many tables, some right next to the playground as well as quite a few out of eye sight of the playground. I would suggest if you are dining during busy times, such as weekends, that you ring and make a booking as these are obviously the first tables to be taken with all the families that love dining at Greenshades.
The tables and chairs that occupy the outside are basic but ideal when dining with kids, as spills and messes created by our little angels won't create too much damage. A lovely trellis covers a lot of the area out here but I would pack the sun protection as it can get a touch warm in Summer. If you have a pram you can access the outside dining area via a side entrance from the car park. There are quite a few high chairs for little ones to sit in and if you require toilet facilities you will find these also near the side entrance to the car park, and they do include a baby change table.
We arrived just after Greenshades swung open it's french doors for business on a week day. There was only one other family sitting outside when we arrived. After I let the boys into the secure playground I plonked myself down on a table nearby and proceeded to have chat with the oh so friendly waitress. I've actually dined quite a few times at Greenshades over the years since we moved to the north west and the two things that keep me coming back are the excellent food and the decent sized playground which keeps the boys occupied for ages.
Breakfast and lunch are available 7 days a week at Greenshades as well as morning and afternoon tea. Kids have their very own menu and it varies in price depending on what your order. The usual pasta, fish and chips and ham/cheese toasties are all on offer and they are priced up to $15.00, which is quite expensive in comparison to many other kids menus in Sydney. Other options from the adults menu are also suitable for kiddliwinks such as toast, banana bread and pancakes.
We had morning tea - babycinos and white chocolate brownies for the boys and coffee and date slice for myself. Now the babycinos are a wee bit expensive at $2.00, considering that they do not come with any adornment, but those brownies were so good! They were moist and full of chunks of white chocolate, I was a bit envious that I chose the more adult date slice. The slices cost $5.00 - $6.00 and the date slice was very delicious, just not as yummy as that brownie! My Vittoria cappuccino was brilliant, I actually don't think I've had a bad brew in all the times we've dined at Greenshades. Just to let you know, they have a huge sweets menu, so if you have a sweet tooth you are in for a real treat. Everything from Blackberry Cheesecake to the decadent Caramel Pecan Meringue are available for $11.00, oh and the scones jam and King Island cream are just like Nanna used to make - $9.00.
Breakfast at Greenshades is a favourite weekend past time for many north west families. The menu varies from Toasted Banana Bread ($7) up to Eggs Benedict with Smoked Salmon ($24). At lunch time the menu has an Italian influence with delicious pastas, risottos, steaks and seafood but be warned you will be paying north of $30.00 for most meals. The meals are decent in size but maybe take along a wealthy relative to foot the bill or just go for coffee and a sweet treat. We've normally dined at Greenshades on special occasions such as Father's Day and even though the bill may be a lot more than other cafes in Sydney, our kids are always happily occupied when we go there and that my dear Little Munchers is a big bonus.
So our mission to road test Greenshades' playground and coffee was a huge success! One is down and there are quite a few more to go - where do you think we should road test next Little Munchers?
353 Galston Rd, Galston NSW
Open 7 days from 9am