Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema offers his tips on how to get little ones to be on their best behavior when dining out. Here's how to avoid that restaurant tantrum. (Jorge Ribas/The Washington Post)

Everyone has an opinion on that Portland, Maine diner owner who shouted down a toddler in full tantrum mode at her restaurant. Critics said Darla Neugebauer overstepped her bounds, while defenders praised her for “taking a stand.”

As a parent of small, sometimes (okay, fine — usually) unruly children myself, I sympathize with the parents. But, as someone who also enjoys the quiet solitude of adult-time breakfast filled with pancakes, bacon and coffee sans screaming, I get that listening to someone’s screaming child is a terrible way to spend a morning.

But, there’s hope! To help avoid another Marcy’s Diner dilemma, Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema offers his tips on how to get little ones to be on their best behavior when dining out. Oh, and these tips? They mostly apply to mom and dad. 

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