In a Story on Instagram that was shared with her 875,000 followers, Agustina Gandolfo, 25, recalled how she went out to dinner in Milan with her boyfriend, Argentine footballer Lautaro Martinez, who plays for Inter Milan.
She claimed that she was given a “blind menu” without any prices, while Martinez was given a regular menu.
“Did you know that in numerous restaurants in Italy they don’t put prices on the menus that they give to women? And what if I wanted to pay?” she wrote.
“The worst thing is that they justify this by saying it only happens in restaurants of a certain level. So does that mean women cannot pay if we are talking about a more expensive meal?” Gandolfo said.
Her remarks have sparked a debate surrounding the issue, with some restaurant workers arguing that there was nothing wrong with the concept.
Rossella Cerea, manager at a three Michelin-starred restaurant, Da Vittorio near Bergamo, told La Repubblica newspaper that it’s something they do at their establishment, too.
“If there is a couple at table we have the habit of giving the blind menu to the woman. It is not discrimination but a form of gallantry,” she said.
“It is a way to advise the woman to enjoy the dinner, the atmosphere and the good food without worrying about more banal matters.”
However, Alessandro Pipero, who runs the Pipero restaurant in Rome, argued that it was an outdated concept.
“We are in 2021 and it is not possible to believe that a woman will not pay at a restaurant. And even if she doesn’t pay, why shouldn’t she know the prices of the meals?” he said.
“I am obliged by law to show my prices outside, so what does that mean? A women can read them outside but not inside?”
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