I put out a post on Facebook asking for parents’ favorite place to take their kids for dinner. This particular TexMex restaurant popped up several times. I grabbed the six-year-old and the four-year-old and gave Mesa Rosa a try!
I am a big weirdo because I love taking the kids out to dinner! But I have very specific qualifications for restaurants I go to with the kids. It must be a noisy restaurant. Nobody wants to be that person with the loud, obnoxious kid in a restaurant. But in noisy restaurants, if your toddler decides to hate the world, you only feel vaguely like you want to crawl under the table and hide.
Having an outdoor section is also a big plus. Sitting outside with kids, even when there isn’t a world ending pandemic, can help save a life! Outside there are more things for kids to look at and enjoy. They can be super noisy and you won’t be disturbing an entire restaurant. I don’t think you need a playground to have a kid friendly restaurant, but I really appreciate how many Austin area restaurants do. It’s nice to have a restaurant experience, that isn’t fast food related, where you can sit and enjoy your meal while the kids play on the playground.
It can’t be a breakable restaurant. There are some great kid friendly restaurants that have good food, and a great atmosphere for kids. But any place that brings us glass cups for our drinking water, is just asking for trouble. We need plastic cups, cups with lids, and if you have some plastic plates wrapped in bubble wrap, we can probably get through a meal without breaking anything!
I took the kids during the week to Mesa Rosa. We went right around five, so it was pretty dead in the restaurant. The inside is your standard TexMex style. Fun pictures and bright colors cover the walls. We heard there was great playground so we asked to sit on the patio. The patio is fabulous! This is the type of patio that Covid conscious people wish all restaurants had. It is a huge patio with tons of room! It opens up into a truly awesome playground. It can be tough to see your kids from certain areas of the patio. But there is still enough space for them to easily run back and forth from your table to play.
The playground itself is pretty awesome. Lots of room for the kids to run. They even have a water cooler to the side, with little paper, cone cups for kids. Do the kids just end up pulling out all the cups to play with them? Yes, they do. But it is still a nice gesture from the restaurant. The kids were on the playground the whole time. When the food came, they’d run back to get a small bite, and chug some water. Then it was back to the playground. You’ll definitely be able to enjoy your meal and a few drinks without having to worry if the kids are having a good time.
If I’m being honest the food is only so-so. It is your average TexMex cuisine. The kids ordered burgers and fries and only ate a few bites because the portions are HUGE! You can certainly find better TexMex food in this area. But overall, it’s an enjoyable outing with your kids. You can sit back and enjoy some chips and queso, let your kids run around on the playground, and then wonder how they got a giant bruise on their head in under five minutes.