‘The idea of what is ‘feminine’ and what is not at restaurants is ridiculous’
In a recent video shared to TikTok, Abbie Chatfield explained how she went to a “boujee” restaurant with her boyfriend. When they sat down at the table, she was given a menu that didn’t include prices for any of the menu items.
“So we’re at the boujee restaurant and my menu didn’t have prices on them,” she explained. “And he was like: ‘Yeah it’s expensive.’ And I was like: ‘How do you know that?’”
Chatfield, who was a contestant on season seven of the Australian series The Bachelor, based on the US show of the same name, documented different parts of the restaurant to show that she expected it to be a pricey place.
However, she was still curious about how her boyfriend knew it was expensive, which is when she realised that his menu had “prices on it.”
“He got a menu with the prices on it, and I didn’t,” she said. “I’m the breadwinner…Patriarchy strikes again.”
In the text over the video, she emphasised her point and wrote: “Only men get a menu with prices? PATRIARCHY.”
According to Atlas Obscura, giving women menus without prices, also known as the “ladies menu,” has been a practice at “high-end” restaurants throughout Europe, as it has been assumed that men would be paying. The site also notes how the menus aren’t common in the US. In the comments under her video, Chatfield acknowledged that the restaurant she dined at was in Venice, Italy.
As of 5 April, the video has more than 718,900 views, with TikTok users in the comments expressing how assumptions regarding topics like pay or portion size shouldn’t be made about a man and woman at a restaurant.
“This happened to me at Prime in Sydney less than three years ago,” one person wrote. “It happens in a lot of boujee places and I ALWAYS mention it and make it uncomfortable.”
“The idea of what is ‘feminine’ and what is not at restaurants is ridiculous!” another comment reads. “They always give me the cocktail or smaller meal even when it’s not mine.”
However, some viewers claimed the menus shouldn’t be seen as a problem, and encouraged Chatfield to have her boyfriend pay for their meal.
“Don’t complain! I would love to be handed a menu with no prices on it,” a TikTok user wrote, while another said: “The man should pay, that’s why.”
However, Chatfield noted in the comments that she “swapped menus” with her partner and that the restaurant staff most likely realised that she was the one paying, as “the bill went in front of [her].”
The Independent has contact Chatfield for comment.