Before moving to Toronto in the mid-90s, my husband and I used to eat at Sophie’s Cosmic Cafe in Kitsilano on a semi-frequent basis. I loved the cozy neighbourhood atmosphere of this funky restaurant, the crazy red booths, and the kitsch that exploded on the walls. I used to crave Sophie’s Cosmic Cafe’s perogies from time-to-time and whenever we’d visit Vancouver and drive by 4th and Arbutus, we’d be excited to see the restaurant was still in business – and thriving.
We just had a chance to visit the restaurant – this time with two kids in tow. My kids automatically felt welcome and comfortable. While there weren’t a lot of children in the restaurant when we visited on this Saturday evening for dinner, it seemed that the restaurant’s diners were quite fine – and even happy – to have kids among them. The three adults (sans children) in the booth next to ours even made some funny faces and conversation at my toddler.
The walls still had their signature decor and were covered with everything and anything you’d fine at a garage sale or flea market. At Sophie’s Cosmic Cafe’s, you’ll find a Superman poster mingling among a few portraits of the Queen, an ancient welder’s mask and a tabletop pool table with a giant fish lying on top of it. My kids had a great time naming different objects. My toddler seemed fascinated with the trophies that were lined up along the window sill, and enjoyed naming each sport that the trophy belonged to.
If that weren’t enough, Sophie’s Cosmic Cafe’s seems to understand that the kiddie set make up a huge part of their clientele. They have plenty of booster seats and chairs for the smaller people. And tucked in the corner are a few milk crates filled with various and random toys from Barbie dolls to toddler sensory toys – and even a GI Joe. My kids were kept occupied while we waited for our food but when joining us at our table, were kept busy with the crayons supplied by our thoughtful server.
And the menu just as I remembered it – cozy comfort food. My husband ordered the D-Luxe burger and I chose the vegetarian burger with chutney. Mine was a bit messy, but I suppose that’s the fun of eating a burger. The kids menu has about seven items featuring typical kids fare – pastas and chicken fingers. The kids shared a plate of perogies. My toddler was a fan, but my preschooler didn’t like the filling. Oh well. Next time, I think I’ll check out whether or not they have a vegetable side plate to go along with their meals – or maybe order a little extra cucumber with my salad.
Our three meals, along with a beer, pop and a single chocolate milk shared between my kids cost around $55 including tip.
Sophie’s Cosmic Cafe
2095 West 4th Ave. (at Arbutus), Vancouver, BC, 605-732-9810
Banner Image credit: Vairdy Photography