The restaurant rewarding families of well-behaved children in the most unconventional way.


The restaurant rewarding families of well-behaved children in the most unconventional way.

There are some moments in life that are out of your control, and a lot of them tend to happen in public with children.

Because even the most well-behaved child can decide they’d rather launch fistfuls of minestrone at the passing waitress than eat it. It happens.

An Italian restaurant in the northern city of Padua, is trying to ensure patrons keep their children under control by rewarding them with a five per cent discount.

Listen to hosts Holly Wainwright and Andrew Daddo discuss whether the discount is fair on this week’s podcast. Post continues after audio.


The restaurant, named after its owner, Antonio Ferrari, was said to have begun the practice after a table with unusually composed children was offered the discount as a reward. The discount has been offered to similarly behaved tables ever since.

Ferrari told the Guardian he believed a little under a third of all parents were unable to keep their children well-behaved during public meals.

Podcast hosts and parents, Holly Wainwright and Andrew Daddo, began the discussion by comparing notes on how they tackle the gauntlet that is dinner in public themselves.

Wainwright told listeners she tries to avoid mid-meal meltdowns by taking an assembly of plans, distractions and last resort measures into restaurants.

“I have a whole bag of tricks that I can pull out for these occasions: colouring books, pencils… I try not to do the phones because I’m really aware of people doing the judgey face,” she said.

“I try to only bring the phone out as an absolute last resort.”

Tantrum in five, four, three... (Source: iStock,)

Wainwright said that although the strategies helped, they still proved useless at a recent family outing to yum cha.

"None of it worked, they just wanted to run around, get under the trolley feet and annoy everybody... if I had been offered a discount, it wouldn't have helped me," she said.

"It's not always in the parents control that the kids are going to be good."

Co-host Daddo jumped in to argue that children just shouldn't be taken to upscale restaurants.

"If you want to go and have a fancy dinner, don't take the kids. You can talk about them. But not talk at them, while they were there," he said.

Do you think a "well-behaved children" discount should be rolled in restaurants in Australia?

Listen to the full episode of This Glorious Mess for more parenting advice and unusual tales.

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