By Michael Hollan
Published September 18, 2019
A Baltimore restaurant is under fire before it has even opened.
When an image appeared on social media showing the establishment’s dress code -- posted on the gate outside -- some users complained that the rules seemed to be discriminating against certain customers. Others, meanwhile, defended the restaurant for trying to maintain a particular atmosphere.
The sign in the photo says items like “excessively baggy clothing, athletic attire, jerseys, brimless headgear and backwards or sideways hats” are prohibited. The photo was captioned, “Dress CODED sign at the new Choptank restaurant in Fells,” implying that the dress code had an ulterior motive.
Another user was more direct with their criticism, posting, “Y'all could have saved yourselves some time and just posted a ‘No Black People’ sign.”
Others echoed the sentiment, with one user posting, "this is racist as hell and I will never enter your restaurant and will actively warn others away from it, have a great day."
In a statement to Fox News, a spokesperson for Atlas Restaurant Group, who own The Choptank, said, “Our policy is no different than countless other bars in Fells Point, Federal Hill and many other bar/restaurants around Maryland including Seacrets and Tiki Lee’s both posted on their websites. There are also national properties such as Wynn Las Vegas (XS) that have similar dress codes in their entertainment venus. The most prominent African-American nightclub in Baltimore, Select Lounge has a stricter dress code as well. Baltimore City Public Schools has a similar dress code and language for their students.”
They also provided Fox News with an official dress code, which was slightly different than the one featured in the photo on Twitter. While it was mostly similar, it didn’t prohibit the wearing of baggy clothes, sideways hats or sunglasses after dark.