Life has changed for this food writer. As a brand-new mom, poppin’ bottles has taken on a slightly different meaning. But while I find myself seeking out diaper changing tables for the first time ever, I’m still on the hunt for all the awesome happy hours, exciting menus and H-town icons, both new and old. Only now, I’m bringing my baby, Quinn, along with me. This “Whining and Dining” series looks at dining out with a baby in the city (more specifically, In the Loop, because Quinn doesn’t like to travel too far from home just yet).
For the past several years, my husband and I had our Sunday morning football routine down: wake up, check the injury reports and our fantasy lineups, and make our way to whatever bar we’ve settled on watching the games at with friends that week (more often than not, that bar was Pub Fiction).
With Quinn here for her very first football season, we’d need to settle on a new routine. One that starts with a bottle and a diaper change, then moves onto injury reports and lineups, and finally finding somewhere with good food and NFL Sunday ticket.
Pub Fiction was out for us now, as the bar employs a strict 21-and-up policy, and Quinn, well, she’s not exactly of drinking age. Beer Market Midtown, however, is family-friendly. Rocking 360+ beers, wall-to-wall flat screens and a diaper-changing table in the women’s room (still waiting for one in the men’s room, Beer Market), it looks like we’ve found out new Game Day spot.
This particular Sunday, the Texans had a noon game, so we showed up early — around 11 a.m. — to secure a booth that would fit Quinn’s car seat. Our other buddies were bringing their kids, so two high chairs were also secured.
Sunday drink specials included $6 bloodys, $3 mimosas, $12 carafes and a domestic bucket deal, but my husband and I are “Mug Club” members, so we showed our mugs to unlock the $3 Texas draft special, ordering two crisp 7-Iron blondes from 11 Below Brewing Company.
On weekends, both brunch and lunch menus are offered from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. We waited for kickoff to put in an order for the brew pretzels, a fan-favorite plate featuring four buttery, soft and warm pretzel sticks alongside a pot of gooey cheese sauce with just a lick of spice. It was a good call. As were the buffalo chicken quesadillas — packed with feta, melty cheese, mouth-numbing buffalo sauce and crispy fried chicken — that we picked up around half-time.
Despite having a packed house, service was on point this Sunday. Our “mugs” were filled and refilled as we pleased, and there was enough room in the booth for Quinn and her little friends to move around while I watched my DraftKings lineup plummet into the ground.
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Oh well, there’s always next Sunday.
TL;DR: This kids-are-welcome sports bar is a unicorn in the party-centric Midtown, offering wall-to-walls TVs and wings for Game Day, plus high-chairs and a dog-friendly patio if you want to bring the pup, too
Kid-Friendly Dining Essentials
Parking: Lot, valet, street
Seating: High-chairs available
Bathrooms: Changing table in the women’s room
Kids menu: No, but there are kid-friendly bites like soft pretzels, strawberry-banana crepes, grilled chicken, steamed broccoli, and fried mac ‘n cheese
Takes reservations: Yes
Extras: Kid-friendly ‘til 9pm, dog-friendly patio
Beer Market Midtown, 3304 Milam, 713-527-8955