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Penne saving: polite children secure discount at Italian restaurant

The Guardian logo The Guardian 18/02/2017 Stephanie Kirchgaessner in Rome
The 5% discount shown on the restaurant bill of a well-behaved family. © Antonio Ferrari/Facebook The 5% discount shown on the restaurant bill of a well-behaved family.

An Italian restaurateur fed up with customers’ lunches being interrupted by rowdy children running rampant as their seemingly helpless parents look on has come up with a novel solution: a discount for well-behaved families.

Antonio Ferrari, who owns a wine bar in the northern city of Padua which caters to families on Sundays, came up with the idea when he spotted a party of 11 at one of his tables, including five children sitting “with much composure”.

Ferrari rewarded the group with a 5% sconto, and has since bestowed the same discount on two other families with well-mannered children.

Ferrari – who does not have children – was at pains to point out that his intention was not to be too judgmental, telling Corriere della Sera: “I imagine how difficult parenting is today.”

Nevertheless, he thought something had to be done to rein in children splashing water in the restaurant’s bathrooms and bothering other customers by running around tables.

He recalled some parents telling him his restaurant was essentially public, and that they could do what they want. But he added: “I’m responsible for what happens in it.”

The party who earned the coveted discount were delighted by the news and left a €30 (£25) tip, Ferrari said.

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