We don't go out much to restaurants. at. all.
I mean, seriously, it is quite a hassle with 3 small kids, keeping them at the table and not harassing other patrons is a biggy, and then there is the whole food issue. It is just freaking hard to get good whole food without all kinds of added crap when you go out, even more so if you don't like to be "difficult" (I have a seriously hard time standing up for my/kids food "weirdnesses", I don't like to feign serious allergies, and I'm pretty shy so...) plus the kids know that restaurants are different from home and everyone around them has a bun on their burger, etc, etc...
One of our safer preferred spots is a tiny local diner that we hit for breakfast from time to time. The do decent eggs, awesome sausage (no wheat, but I think there is some soy in it...) and great potatoes and bacon. (not that I eat the potatoes, noooooooo.... no really, I don't anymore, serious weightloss focus is ON!) They serve everything with fruit on the side (kids nab it all) and are very accommodating when I ask for 3 sausage links and 3 eggs over easy. It isn't even too hard to get the kids to just get eggs and meat, though there have been some pancake incidents. We are a work in progress people, this is real life.
Another pretty frequent meal (a couple of time a month? ish) is getting Costco hotdogs after shopping. I feel like a total freak helping the kids peel the buns off, but I am just really happy they agree to eat the things that way. I do bribe them with sugar free lemonade, which is probably pretty awful, but it seems less bad so I go with it.
So tonight hubby and the kids really wanted to go out (he's about to leave on a long business trip and what can I say, we are a very food centric family) and after much discussion we decided on Outback. I agreed to go with much trepidation, prepared for the kids to ingest all kinds of horrible things before I could grab them away, (or give up to avoid loud arguments where I look like a monster) but it was truly a pretty nice experience. :-) They have a pretty decent list of steaks (all grain fed, but still) served with a choice of two sides, which include broccoli, onions, potato, sweet potato, etc... AND, they had New Zealand rack of lamb!! I had the lamb of course (which was fantastic, I hate paying extra to get steak that I could prepare just as well or more to my liking at home, so it is really nice to get something I don't cook at home) with broccoli and grilled onion. They served it with a sauce in a ramekin that I assume had wheat in it, but I really didn't need a sauce at all, it was not missed. (hubby tried it with his steak/ribs and said it was like pan sauce, but it looked too thick to be safe)
The kids shared a burger and we were able to sub sweet potato fries for the regular ones, but when they arrived they were covered with honey!! WTF? Why would you even want that? So James asked what the sticky stuff was and if it was possible to get the fries plain, and it was, so we did. I tried a couple, they were very good with just a bit of salt. I really don't understand why people need to mess with their food so much, I kind of figured it was like over sweetening processed food to encourage people to eat more of it, but I'm really not sure.
Anyway, my lamb, onions (very sweet, but I don't think they actually had sugar added or anything) and broccoli were absolutely great, and James steak and ribs and (corrected) sweet potato fries were apparently also fab, and the kids were very happy to share a burger with sweet potato un-honied fries. So awesome, we now have a dinner joint we can head to if we need a night out! Outback FTW!
(I still can't quite get over paying the same amount for my meal that I can buy an entire package of ribeye at Costco for... but that's a whole other set of issues.)