MOD Pizza is a popular US chain of pizza restaurants, which is brand new to the UK. Currently the fastest growing restaurant in the US, the chain has opened four new restaurants here in the UK this year, with a fifth branch in Nottingham about to open.
We visited their flagship store in London's Leicester Square last weekend to give their pizzas a try and to see whether it is a good choice as a place to eat out with kids in London's West End.
The restaurant is designed as a fast food outlet - you order at the counter, moving along to choose your toppings, then ordering drinks at the end. All the pizzas are the same price, whatever toppings you choose. They have suggested combinations on the menu, but you can add as many or as few toppings as you like - and it won't cost you a penny extra. The standard size pizza costs £7.87 and there are mini and large versions available too. They also sell salads, shakes and soft drinks. Beer and wine are available for the grown ups.
So is it family friendly?
I would say that on the whole MOD Pizza is a good choice for a family meal out for the following reasons:
- It has child-sized pizzas and you can pick and choose the toppings that your child likes.
- The kids liked being able to choose and being able to see the toppings for themselves over the counter.
- There are cartons of milk and bottles of water and juice available as well as fizzy drinks and shakes, which are ideal if you're looking for a healthier option for your child.
- The food came really quickly - we sat upstairs and by the time we'd got settled up the stairs and were settled at a table the food arrived almost immediately. There are also toilets upstairs - although you have to go back to the ground floor to find a nappy changing station.
- While we were there the staff were pretty relaxed about a toddler running around and gave him a balloon to keep him happy (which his big sister promptly declared was hers).
- They made a small mistake with Miss R's order and immediately replaced it, letting her keep the wrong pizza to give her something to nibble on while she waited. Needless to say the kids managed to polish off the extra pizza too!
- It's also right on Leicester Square so if you're having a day out in the West End with the kids, perhaps visiting the National Portrait Gallery or going to the theatre or cinema, it couldn't really be more convenient. There's a great view over the square from the top floor.
However, there isn't a lift so if you have a buggy you either need to leave it downstairs or sit in the limited downstairs seating. I'm also not sure how well the kids would cope with queuing up to order if it was a really busy day.
MOD Pizza is at 17-18 Irving Street, Leicester Square. There are also branches in Leeds, Brighton, Gateshead and soon to be Nottingham.