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Cap in a fine restaurant

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by jerrysfriend, Mar 8, 2005.

  1. jerrysfriend

    jerrysfriend Senior Member

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    There was an episode of the Soprano's in which Tony, while eating in his favorite restaurant, spied a nearby diner wearing a baseball cap. He immediately arose, approached the man and told him to remove his cap. After a few second's hesitation, the customer seemed to recognize who Tony was and removed the cap.
      I recently ate at the Gotham Bar and Grill. I spied a nearby diner wearing a baseball cap, but I did nothing. I was wearing a Savile Row bespoke suit, a shirt by Charvet, a H&H tie and EG shoes. I doubt that my attire ruined anyone's evening. However, his attire lessened the pleasure of the evening for me and took away some of the grandness I was hoping for. I did not order champagne to begin, as it seemed inappropiate in a restaurant which let customers in wearing caps.
      What should I have done? I am not Tony Soprano and did not have the clout to complain to the other diner. But should have I complained to the manager before or after the man left about the restaurant not having any proper dress code and thereby damaging the evening for some customers?
     


  2. Bradford

    Bradford Current Events Moderator

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    While I would prefer that men follow the rule of doffing one's hat while indoors, you need to get over yourself. The hat didn't ruin your evening, your reaction did. I didn't know we had become the fashion police. As to your characterization of this as a "fine restaurant", I admit that I know nothing about the Gotham Bar and Grill, but it strikes me that anyplace that uses the term "Bar and Grill" generally wants to be seen as a slightly more casual place. If it had been Chez Gotham, you might have an argument, but Gotham Bar and Grill strikes me as a place where I might stop to get a steak sandwich after a round of golf or other sporting event at which I might (horror of horrors) have been wearing a baseball cap and possibly even, leave it on while eating if I would have truly bad hat hair when taking it off. I think you did the right thing, and unless you really are some sort of a mob boss, Tony Soprano, Chili Palmer (or maybe Kalra  [​IMG] ) you should not confront another diner in a restaurant about their clothing choices. You're apt to get into a completely unnecessary altercation. Bradford
     


  3. globetrotter

    globetrotter Stylish Dinosaur

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    gotta agree. as long as he doens't smell or talk loudly, don't let the other patrons bother you.
     


  4. Fabienne

    Fabienne Distinguished Member

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    What if a person is talking so loud, you can barely hear the person across the table from you? Do you complain to the owner, or do you go over to their table?

    We had the situation, once, in our city's best restaurant, and it just about ruined our evening. The lady at the table next to us (Hmmm... should I call her a lady?) was wearing a LARGE hat, and making sure everyone heard what she was telling with much use of body language, arms in the air, etc.
     


  5. uppercase

    uppercase Senior Member

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    Nearby diners absolutely affect one's dining experience, for better or worse.
    Both through dress, manners and such.
    How could they otherwise.? Are you oblivious to your surroundings?

    Absolutely one must comment to the restaurant manager if they allow certain diners to detract from a fine dining experience.

    I recall a dinner last year at Alain Ducasse's restaurant in the Plaza Athenee, Paris.
    I was looking forward to a fine meal shared with my wife.
    Unfortunately, we were seated next to two boorish young Brits, obviously on their company's expense account, who were allowed entrance after having gotten coats from the maitre d'.
    Their loud conversation, boorish manners, and general demeanour certainly detracted from the evening.

    They wanted to fill their stomachs, not savour a wonderful meal; their casual, indifferent attitude to the dining experience expressed itself through their inappropriate dress and lack of consideration of other diners who had to share their loud, boring conversation which they broadcast throughout the room.

    If they had dressed seriously certainly they would have had a different attitude rather than one of just dropping in for a bite to eat; they might as well have been eating in McDonalds. And we felt as if we were eating in McDonalds, despite the food, service and dining room.

    Thank God they left shortly after we arrived.

    When we finished our meal, I did comment to the maitre d' about their standards and she was sympathetic, commenting that diners regularly complain about the lack of an appropriate dress code. But it seemed that the hotel required DuCasse to countenance all sorts.

    That was, and will be, the last time I eat in DuCasse. I much prefer to dine in a private restaurant whose owners set standards for their establishment rather than a hotel.

    The DuCasse experience, by the way, was the only one of its kind we encountered in Paris; elsewhere, our fellow diners were always dressed appropriately for the restaurant and added to the pleasureable dining experience.

    Next time, call Tony. He was right.
     


  6. cuffthis

    cuffthis Senior Member

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    I think an open hand slap across the face is warranted to any moron who wears a baseball cap to a fine dining establishment.

    Of course, take off his hat before you slap.
     


  7. Bradford

    Bradford Current Events Moderator

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    I have sometimes found that the solution to this is to join into their conversation...

    Just wait for an opening, lean over and loudly interject yourself in the discussion. Typically the person is so embarassed by your bravado that they will either be in shock or start whispering nasty things about you. Either way you achieve your objective which is to get them to quiet down.

    And - every once in a while, you get someone who will continue the conversation and then it becomes a fun evening because you're no longer just a bystander but a participant.

    Bradford
     


  8. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Stylish Dinosaur

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    I think it really depends on the establishment in question. In a four or five star fine dining environment, no question, there should be some sort of dress code. However, in a more casual environment, even one with excellent food, I don't think you should expect everyone to adhere to the same standards as yourself.
     


  9. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Distinguished Member

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    Frankly, I find the guy who feels the need to let the entire restaurant know he is proposing to his girlfriend much more annoying than the guy wearing a baseball cap.  Fortunately, I have yet to run into the former.
     


  10. PeterMetro

    PeterMetro Senior Member

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    Just to set the record straight, Gotham Bar and Grill is indeed a fine restaurant and not the type of place to which you'd wear a baseball cap.

    I would agree with the posters who say ignore it. I've seen guys in horrible sport coats - doesn't bother me in the least. In fact, I get a bit of satisfaction out of it. However, I can understand if you were looking forward to a ultra-fancy, formal meal, how having Manny Ramirez sitting next to you would be bothersome. I'd suggest going to a place with a dress code - there are plenty in New York.
     


  11. ViroBono

    ViroBono Senior Member

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    I cannot imagine why any man would feel the need to wear a hat indoors; apart from being ill-mannered, it is also entirely unnecessary. Although decent restaurants will have a dress code, there will always be someone who breaks it, either deliberately or because they have no style.

    Jerrysfriend is not alone - I find this sort of thing irritating too. One hat wearer who broke the rules was the subject of my disapproval:

    Two years ago I attended, with some others from my Mess, the Colonel's Review of Trooping the Colour, at which HRH the Duke of Edinburgh took the salute. The tickets were quite clear; dress was to be No.1 uniform with medals, or dark lounge suit. As it was a hot summer's day we all wore suits, and carried umbrellas against a sudden shower. After we were seated, a family of tourists arrived, late. There were two adults, an older teenager and a child. The teenager was attired in the usual slovenly outfit topped by a baseball cap.

    During the parade, the Colours of several regiments pass the stands; as they do, the audience stand; gentlemen remove hats and officers salute. The requirement to do this simple thing is clear in the programme, but the teenage creature stayed firmly glued to his seat. Finally I could stand it no longer; as the Queen's Colour of the Household Cavalry passed I prodded him gently with the tip of my umbrella and told him to get on his feet and get his hat off when the Colours passed. I suspect that my tone indicated that non-compliance was not an option, and he was punctillious in paying compliments every other time the Colours passed. I received several approving glances, and his father said he wished that he could get the boy to do as he was told as quickly.

    So there you are - always carry a tightly rolled umbrella, and you are equipped to deal with baseball-capped fools at any time.
     


  12. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Stylish Dinosaur

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    Hmm, looks like they have a nice wine list, with some decent deals, like the 99 Shafer HSS.
     


  13. Oltmann

    Oltmann Senior Member

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    Which team was the cap from? I think that makes a difference...
     


  14. globetrotter

    globetrotter Stylish Dinosaur

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    VB,

    what is the policy about umbrellas in HMS military? in the IDF and the US I believe that it is frowned upon.
     


  15. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Distinguished Member

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    If you choose to dine in a restaurant without a dress code, you are taking the risk that someone's hat wearing will interfere with your evening (although I can't imagine how it would). I imagine that most restaurants have come to the realization that they will lose more customers by adding a dress code than they will by going without.
     


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