Restaurant Denies Black Family Service Even After Meeting Dress Code

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An Italian grill in downtown Dallas, Texas is facing backlash after a TikTok video appears to show a restaurant employee denying a Black family service because of the venue's dress code policy. Later portions of the video show the family making an effort to follow the dress code policy and returning to the restaurant only to be denied yet again for an unspecified reason.

Posted to TikTok on July 31, the short clip begins as a young, Black man switching shirts with a woman that appears to be his mother. As the narrator explains, her family made reservations to eat at a restaurant in downtown Dallas, Texas called Ravenna. Upon their arrival, the narrator claims they were denied service because the young, Black man, who she says is her brother, was wearing a tank top.

“They said tank tops are OK for girls, but not boys,” she said.

In order to meet the men's dress code policy, the narrator's brother changed into a Black t-shirt while his mother wore his tank top. Shortly thereafter, the group returned to the restaurant, but were denied service yet again before entering the door. It is unclear what reason the restaurant's staff gave for denying the family service, but a verbal back and forth ensued. Towards the end of the video, the narrator points her camera toward the restaurant's neon sign and tells her followers not to eat at the restaurant.

In less than a week, the TikTok video has been viewed more than 200,000 times and garnered more than 40,000 likes. While many comments have been supportive of the family's actions, some have tried to classify the family as "belligerent" and "extra."

To combat these claims, a separate TikTok video showing the family calmly walking away from the restaurant earlier that evening was posted. Other TikTokers also hopped into support the family.

"Belligerent? Where?" one user asked.

"It's clear they were [racially] profiling [your family] before you guys came in. They tried to keep y'all because of [the] dress code, thinking you wouldn't come back," another user added.

Ravenna has not issued a public statement regarding the matter as of yet.

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