Gentlemen, Jackets Please.
It started with a phone call from a freelance writer from the Plain Dealer, she had heard that we were the only restaurant in Northern Ohio that had a dress code (Jackets for Gentleman, No Jeans, No Tennis Shoes, Flip Flops, ext.) “How do you do it in this day and age of casualness” she asked. I explained that for twenty years we have had a dress code for our indoor dining room and that our customers appreciated the fact that there was still one place left where they could get dressed up and not feel out of place. Also, we do offer an outdoor riverfront café that was more casual.
She then asked if we ever have problems with customers and the dress code. I told her about a young lady who came in wearing flip-flops accompanied by her parents. We also felt her jean skirt and a tank top were inappropriate in our indoor dining room and disrespectful to our other diners. When I confronted her about her casual attires she began to cry and explained that it was her parents wedding anniversary. I relented and allowed them to sit in the dining room. I explained to the PD writer that occasionally circumstances dictate that we give the benefit of the doubt to avoid an embarrassing confrontation.
Three weeks later this made the front page of the Sunday Plain Dealer and sparked debate on the casualness of our society in so many settings. We have no plans to discontinue the dress code that we feel adds so much to our elegant atmosphere.
One loyal customer summed it up best by wearing a suit to dine on our Riverfront Café. I told him that he did not have to be so dressed up to dine outside and he told me it was a show of respect for his wife and something they enjoy doing. That is what a dress code is all about, it shows respect for the person you are with, respect for the establishment you are at, and finally respect for oneself.
Chez François Main Dining Room
- Men: Sports Coat or Sweater Vest required, dress slacks no shorts, a tie is optional, please no jeans/tennis shoes
- Women: Dress or Pant Suit, Blouse/Slacks no shorts
- Casual but sophisticated, dress shorts, polo shirts, tennis shoes/sandals, no tank tops/t-shirts