Antico Caffè di Marte is receiving a backlash online

CNN reports that a pair of Japanese tourists were scammed at a restaurant in Rome with a with a bill for €430 ($470).

The incident occurred at Italian restaurant Antico Caffè di Marte near Castel Sant’Angelo where the pair only ordered spaghetti, fish and water.

A picture of the bill was uploaded to TripAdvisor showing they were charged an extra $87 for service charge.

Antico Caffè di Marte owner Giacomo Jin has since responded to the Japanese tourists’ bill, claiming the menu “is clear”.
“Everything is written in detail, just look at the prices: €16 maximum for a spaghetti with seafood,” Jin said to an Italian newspaper. “To pay that figure, the [Japanese] girls ordered not only spaghetti, but also fish. On the other hand, our fish is fresh: the client picks it at the counter, we weigh it and we cook it.”
Jin added that the tip is voluntary .

Other outraged customers who also dined at Antico Caffè di Marte also shared their experiences at the restaurant.

Vietnamese tourist Minh Ngoc Bui said a waiter at the restaurant suggested a “seafood mixed dish” which was priced at €6.5 per 100 grams.

“We agreed because It would be not a big deal to pay €6.5 extra to try a recommendation dish,” Minh said, who ate at Antico Caffè di Marte with friends. “But they brought us only one plate of mixed fish around 2 kg.”

“We were kind of surprised when we saw this dish because we didn’t expect ‘100 grams fish’ would be this big. But it was our last day in Italy so we told ourselves it was OK. It’s around 2 kg of fish so I agreed to pay around €130-150 for this dish of fish. We don’t want to have more drama in Italy.”

However, when the bill came, the tourist group was charged for 4.8 kg of mixed fish at a cost of €315. With an additional €40 of service fee and €40 for the tip, the entire bill totalled €476.40.

Minh said her friend complained but the restaurant insisted that they had eaten 4.8kg.

“He complained that this could not be this much and he doesn’t agree to pay this much for the service and tip, they did not announce clearly about this rule on the menu. But they told him that the service and tip were the rules and we really ate that much,” she said. “He tried to complain but they forced him to pay. So he paid by himself.”
“When we returned, I asked the man who served us to put 4.8 kg of mixed seafood on that plate. Because I firmly believe that it is impossible and they cannot do it. And just like I thought, they couldn’t do it and refused to do it with the excuse that they didn’t have time,” she said.

When Minh reported the incident to the police, she was told that they should have called them before paying.