(Closed) NWR – Babies at fancy restaurants – yes or no?

posted 7 years ago in Parenting
  • poll: Would you take a young baby to a fancy restaurant?

    Yes

    No

    Depends on the situation (like if my babysitter canceled)

  • Post # 108
    Member
    1979 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: November 2014

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    @ButterflyButterfly:  I don’t think babies (or young children) have any place at a fancy restaurant. period. And crying babies? no way- not at a fancy restaurant, not at applebees, not anywhere. No one wants to have dinner ruined by your crying kid- just take them out! A couple weeks ago at lunch, some 7ish year old kid was running in circles around the whole restaurant and shouting- and this wasn’t Chuckie Cheese- this was a Thai restaurant- the parents didn’t do or say anything! Some posters complain that people can afford to eat out, but not afford a sitter also- that’s your problem and doesn’t give you a right to ruin the dining experience for the people around you. You decided to have a kid, and if you can’t afford it, that’s your fault, your problem, and I have no sympathy for you.

    If I was paying $500 for dinner and there was a fussy baby, I would be BEYOND livid.

    Post # 110
    Member
    7899 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

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    @calendula:  I can totally understand saying that there should be no babies in this particular restaurant, but that’s not the topic of the post. The post is about fancy restaurants, not just Alinea. I’m not at all dissenting in regards to the opinion that these specific parents in this incident were out of line, but I am arguing against the general pronouncement made by many here and elsewhere in response to this event that small children do not belong in fancy restaurants or expensive restaurants or just restaurants in general.

    Post # 111
    Member
    7899 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

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    @HeartsandSparkles:  re: babysitting. No one I’ve seen on here has said that they think it’s fine to being a child under any circumstances into any restaurant and let him/her behave however he/she wants without doing something about it because they couldn’t afford a sitter. We’re saying it’s unfair to say that no parents can bring their kids into any nicer restaurant and if they want to eat there they need to get a sitter. That’s punishing other parents for the misbehavior of a few.

    Post # 112
    Member
    7638 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

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    @calendula:  “Taking a baby to this restaurant is like taking a baby to a gala performance at the Metropolitan Opera: beyond rude. Just disturbingly clueless.”

    That’s not a perfect analogy, because at the opera (or cinema), no one is meant to talk. At all.
    At a restaurant, people are entitled to engage in converation at polite levels. So long as a baby or child is at the same polite noise level, what’s the problem?
    I’m fully in favour of asking parents with noisy babies are asked to leave, so long as noisy adults are also asked to leave.

    Post # 113
    Member
    1470 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2011

    I have a 1 year-old, and while I certainly have the RIGHT to bring him to a fancy restaurant if I so choose, I consider myself far more courteous than that. I understand that in this situation, it was difficult considering a babysitter cancelling, but I would have sent my husband and a friend or something if I had no other option. If I thought the baby would be well-behaved, I might take him, but if the baby was loud, I’d remove him immediately.

    I take my son to restaurants where I don’t think he’ll be a distraction to others, which changes based on how many adults are coming to help wrangle him 😉 He just learned to walk/run and hates sitting still. For New Years, we worked hard to find a restaurant that had private rooms available so he could walk and run around and we wouldn’t ruin anyone’s meal (and he wouldn’t be miserable.)

    I think the chef, instead of complaining on Twitter, should have approached (or had someone approach) the couple, offered to box up their food and a good deal on a return visit, instead of whining/shaming.

    Post # 114
    Member
    474 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

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    @Newly_MrsA:  Well, that’s rude

    Post # 115
    Member
    1987 posts
    Buzzing bee

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    @Atalanta: 

    The idea of taking out your frustration with another couple’s boorishness on a server by denying a tip is unconscionable. 

    Alinea is perfectly free to set their polices as they will.  I think that the parents should have had enough social grace not to bring the child in the first place.  I have not eaten at Alinea, but I have eaten at restaurants of a similar class and I would be infuriated by a screaming child.  Places like these represent some of the few places where one can experience actual gentility and leisure in the United States (well, there are a few restaurants whose truly excellent food and service are diminished by a crowd that just wants to pose and wave their wallets around, but…) and to have that atmosphere disrupted comes close to ruining the whole experience.  (Because these restaurants strive for a certain type of gentility, I also understand why the couple would not have been asked to leave, although I also think that one could make a case that they should have asked them to leave.)

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    @calendula:  +1 all the way

    Post # 116
    Member
    474 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

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    @calendula:  I completely disagree. This couple had paid money for an experience as well. The baby became fussy and took the baby outside. Since when does being a parent mean you are not alllowed to be an adult as well?

    Post # 117
    Member
    558 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2014

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    @calendula:  “Above all, the entire meal is something of a performance, with different servers for each course, each with a presentation and “personality” that seems to match the particular course. Taking a baby to this restaurant is like taking a baby to a gala performance at the Metropolitan Opera: beyond rude. Just disturbingly clueless.”  +1

    There are places young children don’t belong, simply because they cannot regulate their own behaviour and volume the way adults are capable of doing.  The opera, the symphony, the ballet, fine dining establishments, anywhere that decorum is expected and people are paying for the experience of both the atmosphere and the performance — fine dining is very much a performance.  There are always exceptions to the rule, and I’m sure there are 2 year olds who could’ve managed Alinea fine — granted, I don’t know any, but there must be some out there.  But in general, fine dining restaurants, like other artistic venues, are meant for adults only.  My rule of thumb is that if there is a dress code that requires jackets for men, a young child shouldn’t be brought along.  These parents should have had a backup sitter, or they should have sold their tickets.  Period.  Bringing a child to that kind of restaurant and letting it pitch a fit throught dinner was selfish, plain and simple.

    Post # 118
    Member
    545 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: August 2013

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    @JessSeny:  what was rude? 

    Post # 119
    Member
    474 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

    sorry, I didn’t realize I was only on page 1…

    this comment I thought was rude:

    In the event that parents can’t afford to eat out and pay a sitter…then don’t eat out until your child is old enough to sit there quietly and be well behaved.  

    Punishing adults for having children? They need to learn to remove the child if they are misbehaving, not be forced away from society as if their child is the plague

    Post # 120
    Member
    804 posts
    Busy bee

    If I had a very quiet, non-fussy baby then I’d take it to a fancy restaurant (although maybe not a 3 star at dinner…), but take it out immediately if it was disturbing other people.

     

    Post # 121
    Member
    1339 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: April 2015

    @ButterflyButterfly:  I think it depends on the baby (not the situation).

    I have friends who’s babies are the quietest, most well behaved babies. And I am not a kid person, so that’s saying a lot. I have other friends who’s children… are children. And behave like it.

    However, being that you can’t judge a book by it’s cover, or rather, a baby by it’s blankey, I am ALL for the restaurants that have started implementing “family hours.” Ie: children under a certain age (I think it’s 12?) are not admitted to the restaurant after a certain time.

    The topic ‘NWR – Babies at fancy restaurants – yes or no?’ is closed to new replies.

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