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Thread: Restaurant bans young children

  1. #11
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    mr drinky's Avatar
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    Interesting conversation as I may be pissing some people off in a couple of days by bringing my kid to a nicer place. Our babysitter cancelled on us and it is in a different city (so I don't have a back up). What I did was I called the restaurant and asked if kids were 'acceptable' or not. I was ready to cancel but the guy actually convinced me that it could work. He also put a note in the reservation so that we could get a table that is more child friendly.

    Here are some additional considerations though as I don't think this issue is black and white.

    * Very young infants are often the best to take as they sleep the whole time. Past 6 months kids become much more difficult to take to restaurants.
    * Book reservations really early or right when the open. Few people are there and you get your food quickly.
    * Be prepared. Order right away and if the child starts crying accept that one of you may have to leave the restaurant, tag team it, or get your food to go.
    * If all goes wrong and you really disturb the people next to you, then buy them a drink or ask the waiter quietly to pay for their bottle of wine and take it off their bill.

    But with that said, I hate it when parents bring a child that they know will cry. It ruins it for all the parents who know their children well and have well-behaved kids.

    k.
    "There's only one thing I hate more than lying…skim milk, which is water that's lying about being milk." -- Ron Swanson

  2. #12
    I used to work at a family restaurant with an open kitchen. Obviously there were kids there. Mostly they were fine, but sometimes parents with an infant/very young child would just let the thing cry and cry and cry. Like Drinky said, if you go out with a young kid, you accept the risk of it cryings its brains out and you have to get up from the table, at least for a break. Maybe you are used to it, but not everyone is, just be courteous.
    "God sends meat and the devil sends cooks." - Thomas Deloney

  3. #13
    I wonder if people take note of how many times they've been in a restaurant and the children present were well behaved?
    I think Drinky's suggestions are more than fair. It's commendable that someone is willing to expose the younger ones to a different environment, with different people, and food other than McDonald's. If the kid has a meltdown of some sort, by all means, be courteous to the other patrons and take action. But don't blame the restaurant for opening their doors to families. If you don't like restaurants that allows children, isn't it on you to find a spot that caters to your wants?

    And no, I don't have kids. But I believe that children are "he" and "she." Not "it."

  4. #14

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    We took my daughter to Au Pied du Cochon in Montreal at age two, no problems. I've had to carry her out screaming and flailing at our local BBQ joint. I find an out right ban to be over the top. I think parents take their kids out because most times kids behave. You have no idea when they will melt down. It's out of your control. How you deal with it is what is important. It actually irks me when I get glares from other people.

    -AJ

  5. #15
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    Drinky's got it right, I think.
    Spike C
    "The Buddha resides as comfortably in the circuits of a digital computer or the gears of a cycle transmission as he does at the top of a mountain."
    Pirsig

  6. #16
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    99Limited's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unkajonet View Post
    I wonder if people take note of how many times they've been in a restaurant and the children present were well behaved? ...
    I've actually gone up to parents that had well behaved small kids and complemented them. I know it makes them feel good and I glad I did it. Families with noisy kids, I just let them slide.

  7. #17
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    haha this restaurant is in my area. oddly enough on saturday we had three barefoot children running around our restaurant... in and out the bathrooms... tried to go behind the bar and into the kitchen while the parents happily ate and drank.
    them sorts of things dont happen often at our restaurant... more often we have crying kids that need to be appeased with a food or treats or going outside. i think they even have some little bendable wax stick thing as toys so kids can play a bit at the table.
    i am happy to see the ban because restaurants are at a disadvantage dealing with this issue. one mother that commented on this said something to the effect just because my kids are the center of my world they shouldnt be the center of yours. i think that is a more thoughtful response then the many outraged parents that claim to boycott the restaurant.
    its a bad situation because im sure most restaurants arent in a position to discourage potential business but on the other hand disruptive kids at one table can hurt business by causing other tables to rush their meals... not buy that extra drink or dessert. sometimes ya gotta choose between the lesser of two evils.

  8. #18
    It is worth noting, however, to the general public that when single people see parents with kids that are throwing a fit and ignoring them, they assume they don't care about the fact that their kid is annoying everyone. And when a parent is snapping at their kid constantly while the kid fusses, they assume it's because the parent doesn't have control of their children.

    The truth is, the snapping indicates the parents have no control over themselves, and the parents ignoring their kid are doing the best thing to keep their kid from turning into a 15 year old that cries at the table because they were told to put their phone away. When my daughter was 1, she'd scream bloody murder in the grocery store, and I never budged or looked at her. She doesn't do that anymore!

  9. #19
    GoogleFu San steeley's Avatar
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    Kids can be sticky .
    most of the time the F.O.H bends over backwards to help parents with kids .
    i say bans are stupid.
    we are there to feed are guest .
    A clever cook can make good meat of a whetstone.” Erasmus

  10. #20
    GoogleFu San steeley's Avatar
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    I was with some kids at a fine establishment
    food and drink was outstanding and all were very well behaved.
    and the fine host could not have been nicer.[IMG][/IMG]
    and they had party favors and this happy couple could not have been more pleased[IMG][/IMG][IMG][/IMG]
    A clever cook can make good meat of a whetstone.” Erasmus

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