FOOD REVIEW: Pottery is simply child’s play

Budding Picassos's Kirsten McKenzie in Chesterfield Road cafe.
Budding Picassos's Kirsten McKenzie in Chesterfield Road cafe.
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There are lots of food places where you wouldn’t want to go with children.

And there are rather a lot of child-friendly places where you wouldn’t really want to go to eat out unless you don’t mind microwaved nuggets.

A café full of pottery, and even worse, pottery where each piece is someone’s deeply loved work of art sounds like a bit of a nightmare if you are taking youngsters.

However, there is a growing trend for cafes where you can paint your own pots and they are aimed mainly at children.

After all kids love painting, adore making things and are so proud of their final product so it should be a match made in heaven – if you try to block out the potential for breakages.

I took all three children when I headed to Budding Picassos on Chesterfield Road in Woodseats.

The older two, at 13 and six, were very keen on the idea.

The one-year-old is too small to offer an opinion but would have loved to have been set free to paint everything in sight in the messiest way possible.

Although Budding Picasso’s is called a ceramics cafe, it really only serves drinks and cakes.

Even better, the kids said.

Unlike conventional cafes the first thing you order when you arrive is your pot.

There is a £3 charge for colours and glazing before you pick what you want to paint.

Then there are different charges for different pots - if you want something really fancy like Dr Who’s tardis or a teapot then you can be looking at close to £20.

But there are lots of smaller items such as cups, plates and various moneybox animals which are just a few pounds each. While making up their minds on what to choose, the two older kids both ordered hot chocolates with cream and marshmallows (£2.50).

The drinks came just as we started using the rainbow of colours to decorate an Easter egg trinket box (£9) and a rather pudgy chick (£8).

The youngsters gave the drinks top marks between umming and ahhing over which colour to use next.

There were also three choices of cake - all looked homemade and equally tempting.

The red velvet (£2.50) was deliciously moist, tasty and not overpoweringly sweet. It was awarded top marks by my gang.

Personally, I loved the chocolate Guiness cake which is nothing like the drink but has a unique something which you won’t find in any other recipe.

I also enjoyed a large cappuccino (£2.40), after all I thought I’d need caffeine to get me through any amount of time with a baby in a pottery shop.

It was a really good coffee topped with shavings of chocolate instead of rubbishy sprinkles.

With the exception of the baby who understandably got bored very quickly, we all could have spent hours in their painting pots and eating yummy cake.

As it was, I had to insist they only painted one each, although it does look like we’ll be going back again soon.

This is a really constructive yet relaxing way to spend time with the family.

It does intially feel like a fairly expensive one but, since we’ve now got a great Easter present for Granny and a birthday present for a friend out of the trip we could have actually made a saving.

We spent a total of £35.40 and could have stayed all afternoon. Everyone was pleased with an afternoon well spent - and looking forward to picking up their artworks once they’ve been glazed and fired.

This cafe hasn’t been open long but seems like it might do really well. They are certainly doing their best to make it as friendly as possible.

I could even be tempted to pick up a paintbrush myself.