How do you determine when you have totally crossed over and truly embraced this little phase called Parenthood? When your criteria for what makes a good restaurant changes.
It used to be “Oh, they have steaks to die for? I’ll make a reservation right away!” Now it becomes “What? They have colouring pencils for the kids and they get to draw on the table??? Sure, we'll be there!"
Case in point - The Bank Bar + Bistro at One Shenton.
Located in the redeveloped part of the Central Business District (CBD), The Bank Bar + Bistro exudes an old world charm with its dark wood furnishings and leather seats, complete with motifs of Straits Settlement money.
Great interior decor, but that was not what endeared me to the place.
Could it be the food then? After all, The Bank Bar + Bistro recently launched an all-new Weekend Brunch Menu featuring a salivating Weekend Roast and All-Day Breakfast offerings.
Enticing, but still that was not enough.
It has got to be the Kids Menu's extensive range of food then, coupled with a pack of colouring pencils and paper to keep those tiny hands busy.
Nice touch, but that would not be adequate to keep my 3 boisterous monkies occupied for too long.
On the other hand, the reason why the adults could eat at an extremely leisure pace was THIS.
A PLAYROOM specially for the kids!
No prizes for guessing where the monkies zoomed off to after they were done with the food ordering.
Granted that the toys within the Playroom would resonate better with kids aged between 1 to 4 years old, but play is ultimately universal and the two older monkies were able to derive their own form of entertainment from the toys available.
See what I mean?
But the happiest of the lot has got to be Ale, who fluttered from toy to toy in the Playroom wearing a huge smile.
And since the monkies were busy entertaining themselves, we adults could afford to spend a little more time in enjoying our food. I ordered the Roasted Striploin ($25) which was one of the two options from the Weekend Roast menu.
Pardon me but I am no food blogger so all I can say is that I loved it! The meat was so tender and cooked to perfection. The wifey chose the other option which was the Roasted Half Spring Chicken with spice and herbs ($25) and her verdict? The meat was very well-marinated and slid off the bones effortlessly. The fact that I only manage to sample two miserable mouthfuls is testament enough.
My parents came along for the brunch session too and with my Dad being a professed meat-lover, he went for something from the Bank Bar + Bistro's main menu - the Pan Seared Australia Tara Valley Beef Tenderloin ($42.90).
As for my Mum, she dived into the Main Menu and emerged with the Pan Seared Cod Fillet ($39.90).
Truth be told, my Mum is never a huge fan of all food Western but she clearly enjoyed her dish! As for the kids, Ash was gunning for The Bank Breakfast ($20) the moment he set his eyes on the menu.
It contained all the usual suspects of a hearty Weekend Brunch meal - eggs, bacon, ham, sausages, sauteed mushrooms, baked beans and roast potatoes - and true to form, he walloped them with relish. Ale had the Pasta Bolognaise ($9.90), which she didn't finish much simply because she was too busy sampling different bits of food from the rest of our plates!
Ayd went for the Carbonara ($8.90) and his dish was the only one that I didn't manage to take a photo of in its entirety... all because he tucked into it before I could even reach for my camera!
The 2 Weekend Roast sets that we ordered also came with a Weekly Dessert Special, which was some chocolate mousse cake.
It sure looked pretty. Just don't ask me how it tasted but it must been some cake because before I could even request for a morsel, both Ash and Ayd finished their respective slice almost instantaneously!
And off they happily trooped back to the Playroom after that.
Looks like we have to make a trip down again for me to try the cake then. Luckily, The Bank Bar + Bistro is situated in the CBD area which also means that traffic is minimal on weekends. Even luckier is their food prices are only subjected to GST. Yes, no service charge at all!
With an offer like that, it's no wonder that I have undoubtedly crossed over and truly embraced this little phase called Parenthood.
The Bank Bar + Bistro
#01-01 One Shenton, 1 Shenton Way
Tel: 6636 2188
Opening Hours: Mon to Thu: 11am - 12am | Fri: 11am - 1am | Sat to Sun: 9am - 12am
*Happy Hour all day on Sat & Sun