Menu without prices for ladies: chivalry or pathetic legacy?
Menu without prices for ladies: chivalry or pathetic legacy?

If you are plebeian like myself and every time you go to a restaurant in sweet company you pay your fair half and, indeed, you are so stupid as to insist as well, perhaps you have never heard of restaurants that adopt a practice as chivalrous as it is obsolete: that of " double menu ”.

And with a double menu we do not mean the cheap menu for the midday meal and the more full-bodied menu for dinner.

It means that you are presented with an ordinary menu, with the names of the dishes and the relative price printed alongside, and a blank, "pure" menu, that is, with only the name of the courses without any hint of vulgar prices, a subject too low to be combined with graceful pork chops and sweet rabbit in porchetta.

Well, of this second menu, the menu without prices, only the fair sex is honored.

The menu without prices is intended for this: to allow the kind lady to enjoy the meal in peace without worrying about the money to unpick at the end of the meal, never go the wrong way.

A gallantry, an act of chivalry that places the burden of the romantic dinner exclusively on the man on duty, allowing the gentle lady to keep her mind free, perhaps to devote herself in a better way, after dinner, to other amusements.

It must be said that this respect is provided only in the highest level restaurants, you will hardly find this little pearl in the restaurant under the house; however, the treatment is quite widespread and worth talking about.

Wondering if even the fairer sex in version 2.0 likes this small delicacy or not, if this special eye from other times is still perceived as such or is instead cataloged without much delay in the sinister discriminatory treatments, and as such rejected and abhorred by the ladies of today, who scoff at the pink quotas and any other initiative that refers to a gender disparity.

Well, according to an informal survey carried out on his Facebook page by the writer and food critic Camillo Langone, it seems evident that the female universe, at least 70 per cent, likes this special treatment, and is more than happy not to put his hands on the wallets, not even for his own part, thus archiving decades of feminist battles and bras burned in the streets.

(Moreover, an interesting list of restaurants comes out where the practice is still in use, not limited to haute cuisine only: Reale Casadonna - Castel di Sangro (L'Aquila); Le Calandre - Padua; Dal Pescatore - Runate (Mantua); San Domenico, Imola, Pierino Penati - Viganò Brianza (Lecco); Il Convivio Troiani - Rome; Riviera - Venice, Rodrigo - Bologna; Terrazza Costantino - Sclafani Bagni (Palermo); Hosteria 700 - Cremona; Trattoria Antichi Sapori - Gaione (Parma), Osteria dei Vespri - Palermo; Papa Giovanni - Rome).

Even the writer would have no problem gorging themselves in peace, leaving the money-making task to those who took the trouble to take it out to dinner, not considering it at all a discriminatory act or an implicit submission.

However, one wonders if the practice still makes sense today, when often the bill for the meal formally paid by the man carrying the menu with prices is then divided by two just outside the restaurant walls.

Or when the woman pays it in full (is that unlikely?)

Or when the couple, instead of two unrepentant bachelors / spinsters, is made up of a husband and wife, perhaps even in community of assets, so that the outlay by a member still corresponds to an equal increase in the family budget of both of them.

But anyhow, the menu for women only exists, and ladies and gentlemen seem to appreciate a lot without fear of being accused of conformism, short arm or antiquity.

Are you also part of the category?

Or the concern of restaurateurs that the ladies do not have to pay attention to costs is a blameworthy and anachronistic habit to be abandoned as soon as possible, a boring, rancid, useless anchor to something that no longer exists, replaced by "pay whoever wants it", or the "do we Roman"?

Which is always better than "eat and shut up!".

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