Food Daily Dish

Restaurant bans loud children, strollers, booster seats from dining room

A Monterey, Calif., restaurant is banning loud children, high chairs, strollers and more from its dining room
A quiet dining room or else! A Monterey, Calif., restaurant has banned loud children

A screaming baby or a child running through a dining room is never a pleasant sound or sight for diners, but one Northern California restaurant has decided to do something about the behavior of its pint-sized diners.

Shake's Old Fisherman's Grotto on Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey has banned loud children from its dining room. A sign out front reads: "Children crying or making loud noises are a distraction to other diners, and as such are not allowed in the dining room."

In addition to banning noisy kids, the sign also prohibits strollers, high chairs and booster chairs. Diners looking for a peaceful, quiet meal may let out a sigh of relief, but those with small children may see it as just another way of saying: "You're not welcome here."

"I'm completely shocked because I never had that happen," customer Niki Riviere told KSBW-TV. She left after not being able to get a high chair for her 6-month-old baby. "Usually they cater, at least have a high chair for the child, but it seemed like they didn't want any child. They said the child can't make any noises so they turned us away."

Chris Shake, who owns the restaurant, is standing by his policy. 

“If a place has the rules, that’s what the rules are,” Shake told KSBW-TV. "You go in and abide by the rules or you find a place more suitable for you."

Earlier this year, chef Grant Achatz publicly contemplated banning infants from his Chicago restaurant Alinea after he observed an 8-month-old crying in his dining room. 

Achatz tweeted: "Tbl brings 8mo.Old. It cries. Diners mad. Tell ppl no kids? Subject diners 2crying? Ppl take infants 2 plays? Concerts? Hate saying no,but.."

"I could hear it crying in the kitchen," Achatz told ABC News. "We want people to come and enjoy an experience at Alinea for what it is, but we also have to be cognizant of the other 80 people that have come in to experience Alinea that night."

We've reached out to Shake for comment and will let you know when we hear back. 

Should restaurants ban small children from their dining rooms to ensure a pleasurable experience for others? Let us know in the comments. 

Who's hungry? Follow me on Twitter @Jenn_Harris_.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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