Is Bar Louie's new dress code racist?

Categories: News

louie.jpg
Photo by Louie Baur via Flickr
Bar Louie, a popular Uptown spot among bar-hopping 20-somethings, has enforced a strict dress code that some customers are calling overtly racist.

The dress code prohibits entry to those wearing flat-brim hats, sleeveless undershirts, excessively baggy clothing, large chains worn outside the shirt, athletic apparel, sports jerseys without collars, and long white t-shirts from 9 p.m. to close, Thursdays through Sundays.

See also:
Target relaxes corporate dress code, now allows jeans

Bar Louie's manager told Fox 9 that the dress code was passed down from the chain's corporate entities, though it isn't currently enforced at their second location in Minnetonka.

"You might as well say, 'No black folks allowed. It's ridiculous," Minneapolis resident Michelle Horovitz told Fox 9, adding that the dress code is the "new Jim Crow being enforced in a colorblind way."

This isn't the first time Bar Louie's dress code has come under fire. A Memphis location was criticized last August for hanging a sign with the same clothing restrictions, WMC-TV reported. After a patron wrote a critical review about the code on Yelp, the general manager agreed to take the sign down, but said the dress code would still be enforced.

Aqua Nightclub & Lounge and the Imperial Room in Minneapolis enforce strict dress codes with almost identical requirements. Hot Dish reached out to the latter, but they declined to comment.

Similar dress codes have been enforced across the country in recent years, sparking widespread outcry among those who feel the codes target specific racial stereotypes.

Just before St. Louis's long-awaited Ballpark Village opened earlier this year, it was discovered that eight of the new entertainment district's restaurants and clubs would enforce a strict dress code after 9 p.m., banning sleeveless shirts on men, exposed undergarments, profanity on clothing, athletic shorts, sagging pants or shorts, bandanas, and excessively long shirts. Though Ballpark Village is across the street from Busch Stadium, jerseys are only allowed in conjunction with Cardinals games.

How do Hot Dish readers feel? Is Bar Louie's new dress code racist?

Send your story tips to the author, Emily Eveland.



Location Info

Bar Louie

1348 Lagoon Ave., Minneapolis, MN

Category: Music

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501 comments
industrialmonk
industrialmonk

I posted this on the other Bar Louie page but I thought it was worth posting here too:

...technically...assuming black people dress a certain way and blaming Bar Louie for banning that way is racist. Who said black people were banned? They want to be a higher class place and showing your boxers/underwear is usually not acceptable no matter what race or sex you are regardless of dress code. Don't you think its ironic that they are spewing how racist it is against blacks when no one said anything about them as a people being banned?


And for those who say that that style of dress is considered "Black Culture" my response to you would be "How is that in itself, not racist?" Saying a certain demographic dresses a certain way is small minded and short sighted. It's like saying button-ups are apart of "White Culture" because so many white people wear them....The comments made on that site accuse the restaurant of calling the "Black Culture" style of dress (sagging pants, chains, large white t-shirts) thug-like and thus less classy. 

Let's get this straight....Thugs DO wear this style of dress....but it doesn't mean that "Black Culture" (whatever that is) are just thugs. Some white people dress in white does that mean they are apart of the KKK? Some Asian people wear black does that mean they are ninjas? A black man (or woman) wears a jersey does that mean they are thugs?


It's the comments on that website that is making Bar Louie look bad..not the dress code itself. If you wouldn't wear it at a formal social gathering then don't wear it at Bar Louie. That simple. Let's get our focus back to things that really matter....like how about our failing education system, starving children in other countries or just about anything else that's less trivial than this.

malbeck
malbeck

Actually, I don't think this is racist at all, i think its a wise choice if you want to keep idiot young people that have not yet configured their moral, social, and human compasses yet! The garb they explain that is against their dress code, is that of the typical trouble maker, no matter what color of skin they are, and they have the right to enforce a dress code that decreases these types of morons in their establishment, that more times than not have a point to prove, no matter how invalid it is! I would most certainly do it too, and I think we should limit the age of certain bars as well, so as to preserve the sanctity of grown folks having a good time. 

jimmadson
jimmadson

Are they banning see-through tops or 4 inch skirts on women also?

Troy Clark
Troy Clark

It is a owners right to market to the clientele he chooses... It is also his responsibility to ensure his clienteles safety and the quality of their experience. KUDOS to BL!!!

Nick Carlson
Nick Carlson

All dress codes are discriminatory. That's why they have one.... To keep out what isn't desired in the establishment. Also, it cannot be racist because one can always put on other clothing.

Hanh Tran
Hanh Tran

You all can thank Obamacare for this

Hanna Brolander
Hanna Brolander

Oh my god thank you for saying that. Totally made my day.

Hanna Brolander
Hanna Brolander

Discriminatory, not racist. I think establishing what is acceptable dress over what is unacceptable would've been the classier and safer move on their part.

Hanh Tran
Hanh Tran

So true Dan! Lived it first hand. A friend of mine got turned away because of his hat and he is as white as white can be. So it's not just targeting black people. It's an image like you said.

Eben Pieterse
Eben Pieterse

All they want is for you to dress well in their establishment. Nothing wrong with that they own the place they can say what they accept and what they don't. If you don't like it go somewhere else. Easy as that.

Jamie Gaetz
Jamie Gaetz

As a privately owned business they should be able to enforce whatever dress code they want. The beautiful thing about this country is...if you don't agree with it...don't spend your money there. I have personally stopped going to many places because of shotty racial relations and thats my choice...as it is the choice of the bar owner to determine what is acceptable in their establishment.

Dan Jordan
Dan Jordan

They're not asking people to wear 3 piece suits and prom dresses. They're just asking people not to look like they're about to rob somebody. I don't care what color you are the way you dress does project an image of who you are, people need to stop pretending that it doesn't. It's not about race, it's not even about income.. Goodwill sells clothes that fit I promise. It's all about business and the image that business projects, especially in the service industry. Bar Louie and others know that the only way to make money and be successful is to #1 stay open and #2 provide a fun atmosphere people want to keep coming back to. Name one successful business that caters to the baggy clothes, gold chain wearing, white tee shirt crew. I'll give you a minute to think.. Saying this is racist is a racist comment or ignorant at best. That implies it's only black folks who dress that way, very much not the case. In the bar/restaurant industry image is everything and who can blame Bar Louie for wanting to protect their image.

Joseph Schad
Joseph Schad

Bar owners have a very thin line on survival. You can look back at bars in the mpls area that have not made it. I have watched new bars succeed initially and then what I would refer to as dipshits start showing up at the establishments and within a year or two the doors are closed. It is becoming more paramount for a club owner to control his clientele more than ever. With ovama are the heightened minimum wage and the state of Mn sucking the last available penny they can get out of these establishments it's surprising there are any nice places to frequent. Cudos to Bar Louie and other bars for enforcing this and keeping places safe to go. Of the dipahits and punks want to dress like assholes they can go somewhere else. It's quite simple

Tammy Johnson Baierl
Tammy Johnson Baierl

Exactly how is it racist to insist that people look presentable? Has modern society lost all of its class? I don't care if your color is purple or green or white or black or brown or yellow...dress right and act right! Shame on people who feed into this victimized behavior.

Charlie Carlson-James
Charlie Carlson-James

I live in the UK- dress codes everywhere: dress shoes, collared shirts, no hats... If you want to go out, don't dress like a douchebag!

Anthony Domencich
Anthony Domencich

I'm gonna open a club to have this dress code: No skinny jeans No mustaches No butterfly/tribal tatoos No snowmobile jackets No Chet's - seriously, worst name ever, go to Toby Keiths you weirdo No leggings under sun dresses, it looks dumb, pick one or the other

Gordon
Gordon

Good for Bar Louie.  The people wearing this attire look completely stupid.  It is gangster, it is thug.  How can anyone in the world take a person seriously who is dressed like that?  It's a clown suit.  Halloween is only one day a year.  Grow up.  It's not just blacks wearing this stuff either...Blacks, Whites, Asians, Mexicans...anyone wearing this attire is an idiot.


Gordon
Gordon

Good for Bar Louie.  The people wearing this attire look completely stupid.  It is gangster, it is thug.  How can anyone in the world take a person seriously who is dressed like that?  It's a clown suit.  Halloween is only one day a year.  Grow up.  It's not just blacks wearing this stuff either...Blacks, Whites, Asians, Mexicans...anyone wearing this attire is an idiot.




Stefanie Megan Brown
Stefanie Megan Brown

So if a bunch of white suburban Twins fans or Wild fans show up......they gonna say goodnite?! Yeah good luck with that place I'll pass I'm good.

Jerry Silver
Jerry Silver

The complaint is as old as dress codes. Some people, like the blogger who originally complained, are always looking for reasons to scream "race" every chance they get... they are the real racists. I was refused entry to a club once because I had athletic shoes on.... and I WORKED there. Oh... and I'm the whitest man in America. So... I went somewhere else that night and wore proper attire the next time I went to that club. No problem.

James DJvooch Vos
James DJvooch Vos

Not racist to ask patrons to have some class when they dress for your establishment

Mike Kane
Mike Kane

Sounds good, doesnt matter what color you are why should you dress like a douche in public and get in ANYWHERE! If you need to wear your Lakers jersey go elsewhere!

Nathan Pingry
Nathan Pingry

Heck no. I want to be able to go to places where people dress respectfully. I agree 100%. I'm tired of looking at people's underwear because their pants are around their knees. Sick of people spouting their attitudes and egos from under their flat brimmed hats. Go to the Station on Broadway and kick it if you want to be tough like that. I'm done with it.

Jennifer Lynn
Jennifer Lynn

Pretty sure ALL COLORS WEAR THIS ATTIRE! Not just one! ALL! Next whiner please. ....

Stephanie Lauren
Stephanie Lauren

It's stereotyping certain races to say that wearing those things are racist. People can wear whatever they want, but establishments have the right to say people shouldn't wear certain things, just like in schools and at work.

John Nelson
John Nelson

She'd complain if it was an S&M bar also. Lol

Cedric Register
Cedric Register

Not racist at all. I believe the bar wants to create and maintain a certain atmosphere, which I tend to favor. I've been DT and have had to witness and worry about drama on every corner. I love the fact that I can hang out in uptown, which is where I live, and not have to have my night or worry about, having my night ruined because of BS. Louie's aren't racist, just classy! Stop with the race bating and creating unnecessary commotion. Racism is real and problematic enough without this crap. Let's save the "race talk" for real issues and not people who can't find a decent outfit to where at a decent bar. Be blessed!!!!

Michael Ives
Michael Ives

Fucking racist capitalist bourgeois pigs! The proles will dress as pleases them and enter any establishment and demand free shit! Discrimination will not be tolerated! You have an obligation to bake me a cake!

Mat Lang
Mat Lang

that is not a racist thing .

Nathan Anderson
Nathan Anderson

Honestly I know more white people who violate that code than black maybe more Mexicans but either way that description fits a demographic Not a race. Crying wolf does no one any benefit.

Kristen L Nystrom
Kristen L Nystrom

I went there last week with my male friend who is a person of color and we didnt have any issues. I don't feel its racist and if you dont like it dont go to their establishment.

Nita Vs Nene
Nita Vs Nene

It's their business if that's the way they want to run it and then so be it.

Mark Metz
Mark Metz

How is this news worthy? I'm quite pale and havent been allowed in places for wearing flip flops. Race card is getting old. It is not the publics bar, its owned by someone or someones. They have a right to enforce whatever dress code they want. Maybe they just asked the better tipping customers how to clean the place up? :P

emmdeempls
emmdeempls

nobody wants you there anyhow, believe me.

swee2th
swee2th

@emmdeempls You sound like a piece of shit. Stefanie, on the other hand, makes a good point -- and I hope they DO turn away those suburban white kids.

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