This West Berkeley slinger of schnitzel and spaetzle is one of the most surprisingly kid-friendly restaurants in the East Bay — surprising only because this is a serious restaurant, where nearly every item on the menu is made from scratch. Chuck E. Cheese it ain't. Between the airy space (with room for tots to wander, and toys to keep them occupied); the colorful kids' utensils and dishware; and, especially, the extensive (and not-dumbed-down) kids' menu, which features unexpected toddler hits like rosemary and cannellini bean soup, and knackwurst served atop cheesy spaetzle, this is our favorite place to dine out with little ones. The truth is there isn't really a bad time to bring children to Gaumenkitzel: The kids' menu is always the same. But we've found the weekend brunch to be especially pleasant, with the dining room filled with sunlight, the scrambled eggs served with sweet homemade ketchup on the plate, and — most important — none of the stress of a crowded brunch scene.
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