Seaside restaurant fined for serving women a different menu than men

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(Image: YouTube screenshot)

A seaside restaurant in Peru has been fined for discrimination over its practice of giving out different menus for men and women.

The popular restaurant, built on a pier overlooking the ocean in Lima’s Miraflores district, defended itself in legal proceedings but was slapped with a $62,000 fine for giving female clients who dine with men a different menu devoid of prices, according to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle.

(Photo Taken In Chicago, United States)

Women who are dining with men at La Rosa Nautica were reportedly being given gold menus that did not display prices for expensive dishes like fish ceviche. The men, however, made their dining choices from a different blue menu which provided pricing details.

Peruvian authorities ruled that the practice discriminated against women after the case was reported last year by a consumer group to the National Institute for the Defense of Free Competition and the Protection of Intellectual Property (Indecopi).

In a 3-2 ruling last week,  Indecopi ordered that customers should all receive the same menus and ruled that women should have “access to the same list of dishes with prices included.”

The high-end restaurant was also ordered to post a public sign that states: “It is prohibited to discriminate against consumers on the grounds of origin, race, sex, language, religion, opinion, economic condition, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or other grounds.”

The owners of La Rosa Nautica argued that the separate menus “extoll the position of women, considering it a pleasure for them to enjoy a romantic evening with their partner, without taking into account the cost of the services.”

But an official with the agency that issued the fine disagreed.

“These small things may seem harmless,” Liliana Cerrón said Monday. “But at the end of the day, they are the basis of a chauvinistic construct reinforcing differences between men and women.”

(Image: YouTube screenshot)

Some high-end restaurants in Germany still offer a separate “ladies’ menu” upon request, Deutsche Welle reported, noting that Munich’s Königshof gourmet restaurant provides the special bill of fare so guests feel “no inhibitions.” Women dining with men are given a separate menu without being asked at Dresden’s Moritz restaurant.

The celebrated L’Orangerie in Los Angeles dropped its practice of giving men a green menu and women dining with them a white menu without prices after a 1980s lawsuit by offended customers who were represented by feminist lawyer Gloria Allred.

The ruling against La Rosa Nautica drew mixed reactions on Twitter.

 

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Frieda Powers

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