Crave a civilized dining experience?

Love the food but hate the noise? The service is impeccable: it’s a shame that you can’t actually hear the conversation at your own table, not to mention the waiter recite the daily specials.

Noise can be annoying, distracting, and dangerous. The ideal sound level for normal conversation is 55 to 65 decibels — and when the ambient noise rises above 70 decibels (equal to the volume of a vacuum cleaner), you have to raise your voice to be heard. Above 85 decibels (as loud as a lawnmower), prolonged exposure can damage your hearing.

In a typical Canadian restaurant, you’ll find as much as 110 decibels screaming at you. That is the equivalent of a jackhammer or a jet plane taking off.

Take noise off the menu

“The next great environmental issue should be noise pollution,” said Moses Znaimer, renowned media proprietor of The New Classical 96.3FM when he launched his initiative the Anti-Noise Pollution League (ANPL).

The ANPL is directed at restaurants and lounge establishments who create a negative, annoying — and yes, dangerous — dining experience by playing music at unreasonably loud levels.

If civilized drinking and dining is what you preach and desire, Moses invites you to contact the Anti-Noise Pollution League. Click here to share your quiet restaurant recommendations and comments, or call 416.367.9636 to leave a message. (For joining the ANPL, you will be mailed an official Anti-Noise Pollution League window decal, to let everybody know you prefer to dine, civilly.)

ANPL restaurant recommendations will be heard on Dinner Classics with Arlene Meadows, Saturdays from 7pm to 11pm on The New Classical 96.3FM.

It’s an initiative that’s already catching on. Here’s just a sampling of the feedback The New Classical 96.3 has received so far:

“I prefer to hear what my dinner companion is saying and not to have to shout to be heard. I just walk out if they don’t turn down the blaring music. Bravo for quiet dining.” – J. M.Bruce

“I applaud this initiative. I dine-out less frequently because of the annoying, high noise level in both medium-priced and expensive restaurants.” – K. Henry

“Thanks for starting this campaign – there is nothing worse than listening to scratchy, irritating noise while you’re trying to enjoy dinner.” – G. Waterer

“We live in Brantford. Nothing would please us more than to find one restaurant in the area that played something resembling music and if it were classical, that would be heaven.” – E. Bradley

“When you get Canada quiet in restaurants, I invite you to come to the USA and do the same. Congratulations on this endeavor – I wish I were Canadian so I could help. Good luck from an online listener in South Carolina.” – B. P. Kolk

“Thanks for bringing this to the attention of the public. I’m so glad to find out that my husband and I are not the only ones having suffered through the unbearable noise in restaurants.” – D. Pfeiffer