General Discussion

Continuation from New York's Manhattan Board


General Discussion 68

Continuation from New York's Manhattan Board

George Lynch | May 15, 2001 10:49 AM

This is a continuation of a topic that began on the Manhattan Board. The thread started with an anecdote about parents bringing their small children to a restaurant in Manhattan (Amarone) and, after being served initially, then being asked to leave because their children were disturbing other diners.

In response to one of my posts on this topic, Yvonne wrote:

"...we're arguing at cross purposes. George, you say "Again, my point is that when I go to an upscale restaurant for an expensive meal, I really don't want it interrupted by very young children." IAPMHO ( i am pulling my hair out-thought i'd add one for the list!)-- amarone, where Michele Cindy went is not an upscale place (whether upscale places should accept infants and children is another matter, and probably should go to General Topics, but we're talking about a specific instance here. we're not talking about whether infants should be allowed into le Bernardin at 10PM). It was 5.30 PM ( i know, i repeat myself but the time of day is pretty important, don't you think?).

"oh, jee where's the acceptance of all things small and large? i've an aversion to kids, but funnily enough i like other people's and i've had some jolly nice meals out in europe and latin america with children present. cultural differences--whole other thread."

Actually, Yvonne, we're not talking about a specific instance here: you are, but I'm not. As I said in my original post on this topic, I wasn't there, so I can't comment. My comments are about the appropriateness of very young children in upscale restaurants at all.

Regarding the time of day, no, I don't think it matters, unless the restaurant has a policy of seating families with very young children before a certain time. If it is inappropriate for an infant to be in an upscale restaurant at 7:30 PM or 9:00 PM, why is it appropriate at 5:30 PM? Simply because there are fewer diners? If I'm one of those diners, I'm paying the same amount as if I were dining at a later hour and I think I'm entitled to the same expectations of a reasonably quiet and private meal.

You say you have an aversion to children but have had some very nice meals with them in other countries. I also have had very nice meals with children present, right her in the United States, but I still react with dismay when a family with infants is seated next to me in an upscale restaurant. Yes, very often the kids are fine. But all too often everyone in the restaurant is in for a "family dinner", whether or not they want it.

I don't think I have an aversion to children in general, but I do have an aversion to the inappropriate behavior of small children in adult settings. I'm not blaming the kids for acting up in restaurants; I'm taking issue with parents who bring six month- or one year-old infants to upscale restaurants and don't make any attempt at controlling the behavior of their kids. It happens so frequently that dismay is my first reaction, as unfortunate as that is.

To quote you, Yvonne, "...where's the acceptance of all things small and large?" All I'm looking for is to have my restaurant meal privately and not have the next table's kids inflicted on me. Isn't that a notion worthy of acceptance?

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