PLEASE NOTE: This post was written in 2016, and while it should still give you a good idea of the overall experience, it may also contain some outdated information. Please be sure to check their website for the most current information especially about things like hours, menu items and pricing.
Do you ever have trouble getting your kiddos to drink their milk?
Well, we’ve got a surefire way to solve that problem. Take them for a visit to The Farmer’s Cow Calfé in Mansfield, CT!
I had heard about this unique eatery last year after we published this post about our TOP ICE CREAM DESTINATIONS and one of our readers recommended that we add The Farmer’s Cow Calfé to our list. Of course, we can’t just add a place to our lists here at Out and About Mom. We actually have to go there and blog about it first! (Love this policy–especially when it pertains to ice cream!!!)
So last Sunday hubby and I thought it would be fun to take the kids out for an early dinner–and I was ready with a recommendation (of course).
The Farmer’s Cow Calfé is about a 30 minute drive from my home in Glastonbury, CT. It’s out near the University of Connecticut. If you follow our blog then you know that we’ve been out this way a couple times already: once for the famous UConn Dairy Bar and Animal Barns, and again to check out the Summertime Saturday Puppet Show Series at the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry. I love a trip out to UConn country in the summer. It’s scenic, quiet and there are so many interesting places to explore.
You’re probably familiar with The Farmer’s Cow dairy products, which are produced locally here in Connecticut and sold at grocery stores throughout the state. Or at the very least, you’ll recognize that famous cow that graces their milk cartons. The Calfé was established in August of 2012 (you can read more about its history here) and of course it features Farmer’s Cow dairy products like milk, cream and ice cream.
I don’t know why I had this in my head, but I was envisioning that the Farmer’s Cow Calfé would be located in the middle of a dairy farm. Maybe with a big barn and a silo nearby. Cows wandering around near the patio. (That sounds sanitary, right? Good thing I turned out to be wrong about that!)
Even after I looked at my iPhone GPS and saw that it was located right across the street from the Eastbrook Mall, I was still looking for a rolling hill and a weathervane. (By the way, you can actually visit the farms as well; just not here.)
So of course, we drove right by the first time.
In my defense, the restaurant is located at the far corner of a strip of larger stores (Petco is its neighbor) and there was no sign for it out by the road.
But once you know where you are going (not a meadow, but a strip mall), it is impossible to miss this friendly, bright green exterior!
There’s lots of parking, of course.
They have indoor seating and outdoor seating. Either way, you order at the counter and your food will be brought out to you.
The menu is pretty diverse and features breakfast items as well as soups, salads, wraps and paninis. Not to mention ice cream, of course. You can read it on the board above or grab one of the paper menus on the counter.
There is a “Just For Kids” meal special that includes a choice of sandwich, apple slices, the Milk Bar (with unlimited refills!), and an Itty Bitty ice cream cone for dessert (and yes, you can go back for that cone after they finish eating their meal). It’s really a steal at just $5.95.
After you place your order, you go find a table and wait for your food to be brought out to you. I should mention that there are crayons/coloring sheets for the kids at the edge of the front counter.
Waiting for the food is an excellent opportunity to check out the Milk Bar. I’ve heard that there are around 30 flavors total, and they rotate each day. On our visit we found praline, maple & coconut flavors. There’s always regular milk and chocolate milk as well.
The kids get a little cup (grownups can also purchase a cup for the Milk Bar for just $1.50–free refills for us too!), and you can go up as many times and try as many flavors as you want. I don’t have to tell you what a hit that was with the kiddos 🙂
They tried every flavor!
I had read some reviews that said it would sometimes take awhile for the food to be served. Truthfully, we were there at sort of an odd time (maybe 4:30?) so we didn’t have to wait very long. And the Milk Bar was more than enough entertainment for all of us! Hubby and I chose root beer and iced coffee (so good!) for beverages, but I was kind of regretting that I didn’t get the Milk Bar too. Next time!
Anyway, in what seemed like a few minutes, our food had arrived. Grilled cheese for the little guy.
That he chowed down on.
A ham and cheese sandwich for the big guy.
That he prefers to eat deconstructed 🙂 Whatever.
I got the Grilly Goat panini–Beltane Farm goat cheese, fig, honey and spinach. Delicious.
Hubby got “The Moo & The Oink,” I think just because he wanted to say it out loud when ordering 🙂
Sandwiches come with a choice of side item: chips, fruit, coleslaw or a roll. We both choose the fruit cup, which was a melon variety that day.
Of course, as yummy as the sandwiches were, I think we were all looking ahead to dessert. There were a lot of exciting ice cream flavors listed on that menu!
Since the kids’ meals came with an Itty Bitty ice cream cone, we decided to let them pick out their flavors first. Kids can pick any flavor they want! Mine went with chocolate and chocolate chip. I was a little worried they would be disappointed with a cone called an “Itty Bitty,” but it was the perfect size kids’ cone.
Note to self: just because it’s an itty bitty cone doesn’t mean it won’t make a big mess 🙂
Since we had missed out on the Milk Bar, there was no way hubby and I were walking out of there without taste testing some homemade ice cream. Unfortunately, I put down my spoon long enough to take a few photos and you-know-who decided that he was ready for seconds.
I think I got about four bites total. But it was delicious. (I ordered the Kiddie size, by the way–look at how big it is!)
We’ve been to a lot of ice cream places for the blog, and I was struck by the fact that The Farmer’s Cow Calfé is extremely reasonably priced. That Itty Bitty cone costs less than a dollar, and even my giant Kiddie size was just over $2. They even have a stamp card that gives you a free 5th Itty Bitty cone after the purchase of 4.
No need to stop at the grocery store on your way home. You can also pick up all your milk products here!
I did check out the restrooms before we headed out. No changing stations, but they are nice big family restrooms. And there are also high chairs back here if you need one.
On our way out we couldn’t resist a photo in this cute cut-out. The kids made their best “moo” faces.
All the way home they talked about the Milk Bar and the flavors we might possibly find on our next visit. Banana? Blueberry? Potato chip? (Hoping no for that last one.)
I guess we’ll just have to see. Who knew milk could be so much fun 🙂
Have you been to the Farmer’s Cow Calfé? What’s your favorite milk flavor?
(Across from the Eastbrook Mall)
Open Daily 7am – 9pm
Summer Hours: Fri. & Sat. 7am to 10pm
- Closed Thanksgiving Day
- Open until 5:00 p.m. on Christmas Eve; closed Christmas Day
- Open until 5:00 p.m. on New Year’s Eve; Open New Year’s Day from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
See menu for details. (All items under $10.)
Stroller Friendly: YES.
Coffee Mug Friendly: Coffee is available for purchase.
Baby Changing Station: NO
Food for Sale: Duh
Cash Required: NO
Dress Code: None
Age Recommendations: All ages!
Evening/Weekend Hours: YES
Discounts: Ask for a stamp card for a free 5th Itty Bitty cone after the purchase of 4 Itty Bitty cones.
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