Appropriate wear for restaurants

Old Jun 14th, 2015, 08:25 AM
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There's relaxed dressing and relaxed dressing. We were in a fairly smart restaurant in Antibes last year, the table next to us the man was wearing loose shorts (like football shorts) and a tank top. I really don't want to see a man's hairy armpits at dinner.

This has nothing to do with pricetags. You can be well dressed in Primark. Jeans and a shirt are fine almost everywhere. I still make my son wear a shirt with a collar for dinner though, with his jeans
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 08:38 AM
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That's not true. Many will find a way not to serve even well-dressed foreigners (deny reservations over the phone, etc). >>

How do you KNOW that sandralist? has it happened to you?
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 09:18 AM
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Tulips -

I'm with you. When I go out for a nice dinner I don;t want to be looking at some strange man's hairy legs or armpits. It just takes so much away from the experience.

If someone doesn't want to wear at least a golf shirt and pants they should stick to corner cafes - not nicer restaurants (except perhaps in a beach resort).
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 10:09 AM
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Yes, it happened to me once in Naples, but I also talk to a lot of people in the food and restaurant business in Italy and elsewhere. I have no idea why you find this in need of such PROOF. Like I said, the vast majority of posts and trip reports you see here and elsewhere about people looking for "local's" restaurants only and bragging about eating where tourists don't go -- do you think people who make their living in the restaurant business in places like Rome or Florence have no idea about such things?

Tourism is not the unalloyed joy to businesses that is so often portrayed on Fodor's, and that goes for wait staff and cooks. A great many restaurants in Rome and other places do welcome everybody. Italy is a very hospitable place. But there are many downsides to becoming a tourist destination restaurant, and there are professionals who don't want the tourist trade.

Get over it. Like I said, why would want to eat where you are not really wanted? I wouldn't. I would never return to the restaurant in Naples that treated me like a second class citizen.
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 10:11 AM
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Golf shirt?
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 10:20 AM
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A golf shirt is COLLARED. It can look nice. The more expensive ones fade and wrinkle
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 11:44 AM
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Yes, it happened to me once in Naples, but I also talk to a lot of people in the food and restaurant business in Italy and elsewhere. I have no idea why you find this in need of such PROOF.>>

because it sounded anecdotal as indeed it turned out to be.
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 12:19 PM
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But I said, if you kept reading, that it was more than anecdotal -- unless you totally discount what restaurant professionals say, and dismiss all that as well as anecdotal. Are you looking for an academic study? Science?

I am surprised anybody finds this a terribly controversial or challenging statement. In addition to being treated quite poorly in comparison to native Italians and known customers at the Neapolitan restaurant (which had won a designation in the Slow Food guide), I ate in a hole in the wall in Rome where clearly we were sized up as tourists (because we don't look Italian no matter how we dress!) and it wasn't until we spoke in Italian that we were shown a table. The place was truly, truly the kind of neighborhood trattoria where people in the neighborhood come for whatever is being served that night. There were only 2 choices for each course on the typed-xeroxed menu. It wasn't a "restaurant" looking for more business.

Like I said, it simply isn't true that "No restaurant is going to turn away business because they don't like foreigners." This isn't because tourists are viewed as immigrants (who are most certainly not welcome in some places in Italy, incuding restaurants) but also because some restaurants have a business model that isn't about catering to tourists, and they don't feel obliged because there must be a thousand restaurants in Rome that do cater to tourists, and it is equally not true that all of those are bad.

I think I'll leave everybody to figure this out for themselves or believe whatever they want if it makes them feel better about something.
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 06:25 PM
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All this 'eat where the locals eat' is so lofty and pretentious. My Neapolitan family/friends love a faddy new street food experience that is....crisps/potato chips that are heated with sauce poured over the top and served in a paper cone. That's what the locals are eating in Naples right now. Am sure the bloggers won't be blogging about that one.
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 07:33 PM
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Mother always said that one could go anywhere with a Brioni opera cape and a martini shaker.

I do have to write that the last time I was in the bar at the Hassler it was all tennis skirts, golf shirts, and Tricia Nixon headbands.

Thin
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Old Jun 14th, 2015, 08:12 PM
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These threads about what to wear always, always devolve into the usual suspects posting what THEY wear and where THEY eat and how THEY were treated, each one desperate to look more sophisticated than the other and succeeding only in looking foolish.

Honestly, I take note of the posters' names only because I would never take any advice from these gasbags, under any circumstances. That, to me, is the one and only useful thing about these threads.
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Old Jun 15th, 2015, 11:57 AM
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OMG you're right, Thin! The Tricia look has been EVERYWHERE again.

We used to count SmartCars in Europe; I think this year we'll count Tricias.
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Old Jun 15th, 2015, 06:22 PM
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I think you can get away with a lot of different things depending on where you are, but I think for Italy you'd be fine with what you propose.

Personally, I always like to dress on the nicer side for meals and in general. My idea of smart is either a dress or a crisp pair of fit jeans with an equally crisp button-up shirt (usually white or black), so that's what I usually go with. And pearls, of course. As Mom likes to say, "good preppy girls wear collars and pearls!"

For guys, I would think slacks and a dress shirt ought to do it, with the occasional tie... but more imagination is always welcome!
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Old Jun 15th, 2015, 07:04 PM
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Dear Mike

You inadvertently stepped on a snake's nest. Asking what to wear in Europe here on the Europe forum is dangerous business.

You will be fine.

Ignore all answers, even this one.
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Old Jun 16th, 2015, 05:24 AM
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You do know that our own St. Cirq (now missing in action) went to Sidwell Friends with Tricia?

The Nixons loved staying at the Hassler in Rome.

I can just picture both Julie and Tricia racing up the Spanish Steps with their shopping bags from Sermoneta.

Thin
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Old Jun 16th, 2015, 06:02 AM
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Hi Pepper,
Seems quite cryptic to me...
Anyway to clothes :
- no flipflops, no shorts (short shorts for women) and no shorts at all for men is the habbit in France (probably in Italy). However tourists find themselves in confortable shoes and even myself can be found in shorts in some restaurants.
If I have the opportunity, I always dress more correctly - makes me feel more confortable. And avoid being looked bizarrely.
As for rejecting tourists, I've stil lto see it for myself, albeit I've been turned down when with toddlers (and all the more often with a pushchair).
I avoid these restaurants like a plague : if they don't like children they don't need my money.
Caveat : we have been making children about a period of 15 years, so where quite often with toddlers...
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Old Jun 16th, 2015, 07:09 AM
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Thin: But what was Julie wearing?

Hmmm?

------
I could care less about this nonsense with tourists being not accepted in restaurants or accepted. And it does bring back the point that dress can be incidental to getting a table, no matter where you are.

Hey, I know that in my town, if I go to a certain restaurant over and over and over again, I start to get priority, even if I'm not demanding it in any way. A business owner knows that if something happened that night--say one of the bartenders or servers had a family tragedy--I certainly am not going to write him up on TripAdvisor because of poor service. And that relationship becomes VALUABLE to BOTH parties. I become his/her steady source of income as restaurants become "hot" and "unhot". I know as a repeat client, not a one-off, what is best on the menu and value it. I'm probably back there for that dish.

So let's move on.
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Old Jun 16th, 2015, 07:10 AM
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I agree it is appropriate to wear clothing in European restaurants.
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Old Jun 16th, 2015, 10:57 AM
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I completely agree with Edward2005.
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Old Jun 16th, 2015, 11:59 AM
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I''ll also go with Edward2005��

I've gone with the collared shirt, dockers and brown Merrills so far and no blood has been shed. (I wore shorts the first night; exhausted after a nine-hour flight and a three-hour drive to Orvieto (including the wait for the car rental).

And we just finished dinner at a very pleasant trattoria in Arezoo where we might have been the only non-Italians - we were treated very nicely.
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