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October 21, 2012

Antisemitism? Famous NYC Restaurant Enforces Minimum On Haredim, Not On Others

River Cafe closeupA popular haredi shidduch spot is the bar of a high end non-kosher NYC restaurant and haredim are infamous there for sitting at the bar or on the terrace overlooking the water and only ordering – water.

River Cafe closeup
The River Café

The River Café, a famous NYC non-kosher restaurant with amazing water views and a $100 three-course price-fixe menu, has been accused of antisemitism because it enforces its $25 per person minimum exclusively on haredi and Orthodox Jews – and against non-Orthodox and non-Jews who come to the restaurant wearing gym attire like sweat pants.

The New York Post set out to prove antisemitism – but it did not try to prove that the restaurant enforces the same policy on poorly dressed patrons, as well:

The Post sent a Jewish couple to the bar. The husband, wearing a yarmulke, and the wife, dressed in a simple long skirt, were told the bar was full.

They were told they could sit on the empty terrace and pay a $25-per- person minimum.

Five minutes later, two Post reporters, wearing no religious garb, were seated on the terrace and were not required to pay a minimum. The bill for a coffee and a gin-and-tonic totaled $18.51.

The Post claims the actual notes allegedly written by restaurant management read as follows according to the Post:

“If they look as if they will only order water (not that we stereotype or anything) mention the minimum right away,” one note says. “If they ask for the bar and there is room, tell them there is a minimum at the bar as well.”

Another note reads: We “have decided that when people come in for the bar and are A. wearing sweat pants and B. religious top hats and strings, you must say for A. gym bar and for B. water bar. Thanks.”

But the actual notes as posted by the Post have a slightly different reading:

River Cafe 1

River Cafe 2

The Post appears to have cut off what was written above the text of the second note. as well, but it is clear the last word in that missing text is "minimum."

The Post closes its piece with the following bit of information that really should have been placed at the top of the article, not buried at its end:

The River Café…has become a popular date spot with Orthodox Jews, who are required by their religion to choose public places for dates.

Current and former employees said these couples come for the view and non-alcoholic beverages, and are frowned upon because they take up seats and don’t spend enough money. [emphasis added]

Haredim don't date the way other people date.

Some very cloistered hasidic sects still 'date' by having the potential groom and his entire family come to visit the potential bride and her entire family at the bride's parent's home. The potential couple are left 'alone' in the front room or in another public room of the house while the two families chat in the kitchen or dining room. If the potential groom and bride agree, and if their families agree, that will probably be the only 'date' they have, and the couple will not see each other again until the wedding ceremony.

But most other haredim do date in the context of a shidduch, arranged marriage. But they don't touch each other and they don't seclude themselves. In Israel, they usually don't travel together to and from the date location. In America, they often do.

These haredi dates usually take place in hotel lobbies (a Jerusalem favorite) or in bars attached to non-kosher restaurants (common in New York).

The latter provides a unique advantage – the only other haredi people who might see the couple together will be other haredi couples who are dating (or haredim eating non-kosher food in the restaurant). And since no one wants to advertise who they're dating (or that they're having lobster in the The River Café), the shidduch can remain a secret until the engagement (or forever if no engagement takes place).

When I met women for these types of shidduch dates, I bought her drinks and, in Jerusalem, food. And so did my friends who were shidduch dating. It never occurred to me or to them that a hotel or restaurant bar should allow us to sit for several hours without us spending enough money to make it worth it.

But haredim appear to feel more entitled now, and the idea of sitting in a place for three hours where meals cost $100 per person and ordering two cokes and two glasses of water doesn't seem to be problematic for some of them.

So?

What are The River Café and restaurants like supposed to do? Lose money on people who are abusing their hospitality?

And what of the New York Post that pursued the 'antisemitism' angle of this story but which did not pursue the sweatpants-gym clothes angle?

All I'll say is what the Post did is very bad journalism.

Comments

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B"H

What an apologist for antisemites.

where is all your law of the land talk?

This is violation of federal and state laws.

This place is going down. Just like the antisemite cop in CH.

Posted by: simple jew | October 21, 2012 at 03:15 PM

And you have no problem with the behavior of your brethren who order water and take up space?

How foolish, have a minimum and apply it to all. Simple as that. They are on a slippery slope if they try to analyze the "look" of the customer - they will lose in the long run.

How foolish, have a minimum and apply it to all. Simple as that. They are on a slippery slope if they try to analyze the "look" of the customer - they will lose in the long run.

I have a suggestion for where the next FM asifa be held. Cocktails, of course, are on WSC.

please . the resturant is 100% right for charging this fee . look some charedy people choose that place to go dating and don't spend a dime or maybee just order a glass of seltzer or juce . at the same time they coyuld use the space for someone who will order a full cource meal.I'm wondering who ran to the press to make a tumul.

Shmarya

the issue is simple do they enforce the 25 minimum across the board or not?

if they do not, then it is a problem.

If they do, then it is a none issue.

but it seems they do not and that is the point

I think there is a minimum for all they just tell the frum Jews that right away since they may balk later to pay so much for water

"Top hat and strings",LOL

It's all good ! Maybe this will force the charedi shidduch daters to order a couple of beers. Wearing beer goggles may help a few shidduchim along.

This policy (while probably sensible for the restaurant) is based on prejudice. It is illegal under current US laws and is against public policy.
Considering what type of a post you would have written (and have written in the past) if this would have been a charedi establishment having some sensible yet illegal policy your current reporting seems out of place and lends extra credence to the common accusations among many of your readers that you are out to get the Orthodox while are ready to defend everyone else.

I have seen, time and time again. the frumma going to places of this nature and not spending a cent, or spending very little. Due to their sense of entitlement, they simply do not understand that the unwritten understanding of going to places like this is that you spend some money. The establishments do not ususally have a policy or signage to this effect simply because normal people understand this.

Can't they just order a whole bottle of booze (under hashgacha, of course) and bring their own shot glasses?

Tell them that tips are free money and they will all want to work there.

If there is a legitimate business reason for discrimination of a covered class and also slobs, be they one in the same or not, the restaurant will be okay.

Why is this even an issue? I thought it was a violation of halacha to go into a non-kosher restaurant.

I think they are outside.

B"H

What an apologist for antisemites.

where is all your law of the land talk?

This is violation of federal and state laws.

This place is going down. Just like the antisemite cop in CH.

Posted by: simple jew | October 21, 2012 at 03:15 PM

No, this is another case of you hatbearded schmucks being given an inch and taking a mile. Your momma should have taught you better, but you grew up in ghettos so that's how you act. You are a cancer.

Posted by: simple jew | October 21, 2012 at 03:15 PM

And what would you say if a Gentile couple sat in a Kosher establishment for several hours and only ordered water? Would you have the slightest objection if they asked them to leave? I doubt it.
By comparison this restaurant is being quite reasonable.

Oh please, by the time they got home the kosher establishment would have stolen their identity and burned their house down. Up to three stories of it, anyway.

I love how the Post is ostentatiously highlighting prejudice against Haredim, while the true upshot of the article (which I'm sure they intend) is that every hotel in Manhattan will wise up and charge a cover charge for just hanging around.

But for the record, I think the riverside is right, even if they are in violation of Federal and state laws. If I went on a shidduch date, and only ordered water, I made sure to leave a 40 - 50 tip, because freeloading is just low

Substitute "blacks" for chareidim. Do you like the picture? I didn't think so.

All i can say that it is shamelss behaviour on the frum side to go and just occupy space they are tottaly indifferent to behaviour that is beyond dtupid they think they goyim are not human and dont understand proper behaviour what a bunch of morons.

B"H

Wow. Amzing. With exception of seymour you all seem to defend illegal practice under federal and state law.

Jews deserve equal rights. I am sure a lot don't mind spending $25 min on drinks. Its still a cheap date.

Even the $25 is probably not enough for a couple spending 3 or 4 hours chatting using prime table space.

I don't have any prob w minimum.

I have major problem w selective enforcement.

Nonjews per post article went in bought $16 in drinks.... no problem.


The frumma are the most prejudiced racist people you'll ever meet. And they have the audacity to whine about discrimination.

I thought the frumma are all loyal republicans who want smaller government, no government regulations, no government interference in their lives, but now they want the government to interfere for them?

It all boils down to the frumma being cheapskates and parasites. To know them or to have to deal with them is to despise them.

the restaurant is dead wrong for selectively enforcing a $25 minimum and/or refusing to seat people based on their religious garb. however, i dont think this has anything to do with anti-semitism. its a simple business decision based on their correct observation that religious jews wont order food (since they cant), and rarely order drinks from the bar.
that said, charedim who treat places like this as free public lounges are of course dead wrong too.

surprisingly, many commenters on VIN have no issue with the policy and defend the reataurant against charges of anti-semitism. that speaks volumes.

I kind of agree with Milhouse, whom I usually despise, from CrownHeights.info.

"...There's no need to impose a minimum on normal customers. They know that on average they make good money from normal customers, so if once in a while a bill comes to $20 instead of $25 it makes sense to let it go, rather than demand they buy something else. But when they know that customers fitting a certain profile will only spend an average of $10 or $15, it makes sense to impose a minimum of $25 on anyone fitting that profile..."

Ok, it's probably not legal to do what Milhouse says, and the minimum should be for everyone in order to keep it legal.
As usual, the frumma are the only group that consistently screws this establishment.

I'm no lawyer, but it's illegal under city, state, and federal laws. You have to treat everyone the same. If were to charge everyone the $25 minimum, that is fair and legal. But you can't pick and choose who gets charged and who doesn't.

Sorry, but this is cut and dried discrimination.

It's illegal under US law. The place can impose a two-drink minimum, but not discriminate on the basis of religion.

I'm no lawyer, but it's illegal under city, state, and federal laws. You have to treat everyone the same. Sarek @ 05:17

NOT true.

it all boils down to the frumma being cheapskates and parasites. To know them or to have to deal with them is to despise them.

Truer Words Were Never Spoken

The restaurant also has the same approach to slobs wearing sweat pants. That crowd doesn't buy very much either.

Aren't stories about shidduch dates and how cheap the boys are quite legendary? I heard of some shmuck who brought along a can of soda and a piece of kugel in his pocket and offered it to the girl to eat.

Well, I happen to BE a lawyer, and I think that this restaurant is coming very close to- and possibly stepping over the line - of discrimination. People have to be treated equally. If you are operating a commercial establishment, and it's open to the public, you have to let them in the door. To discriminate on the basis of religion is as unacceptable as discriminating on the basis of color. Having aaid that, I don't think there is anything wrong with requiring a certain "minimum spend" if the person is going to be patronizing your establishment. It's your place of business, and you can run it however you want. But the same rules have to apply to everyone.

to WSC

I was wondering in which resturaunt that story happened????

Mebey shmarya should go there for himself dressed as a nice chasishe man and see for himself if they discriminate.
If he wants i am sure a few of the writers on this blog will volunteer to go for a drink or 2 with you.

Posted by: simple jew | October 21, 2012 at 04:48 PM

Of course, you didn't answer Shmarya. Typical. You have no defense, and you know it.

I kind of agree with Milhouse, whom I usually despise, from CrownHeights.info.

I'm amazed. Not that I go there often, but as I recall, Millhouse is usually one of the "amen chorus".

I thought the frumma are all loyal republicans who want smaller government, no government regulations, no government interference in their lives, but now they want the government to interfere for them?

It's the same with all neoconservatives and religious fanatics. They only want "small government" when it suits them.

As usual, the frumma ruin eveyone's fun. What about a couple who might legitimately just want to have one drink? They would still be profitable customers but the bill would not come to $25 (if just regular drinks, not fancy cocktails).

If they gave a nice fat tip, this would never happen.

You're meeting your future bride, and you are too cheap and thoughtless to pop a twenty on the waitstaff after sitting a few hours in a fancy place drinking water? Is her price not above rubies?

Believe me, Mr. Clueless wouldn't get a second date.

I also agree with Barron, a minimum spend for everyone across the board, unless sitting at the bar.

Posted by: DerNister
"Substitute "blacks" for chareidim."

Substitute Black American paying costumers for non-paying Charedim patrons. Don't like the truth?. Tough.

Is a restaurant, not a park. Comprende "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone"?. Deal with it.

Posted by: put a square into a hole
"I was wondering in which resturaunt that story happened????."

I don't know,... Could it be in the picture caption(????), or the one paragraph below it(????).

"Mebey shmarya should go there for..."

Yeah, yeah. Blah, blah, shmarya, blah, blah, antisemite, blah,... Thank for your expected non-contribution, as usual. =P

B"H

A lot of these dates are poor rabbinical and college students.

There are a lot of dates where they spend A LOT more at some very expensive kosher restaurants.

Posted by: Simple Jew
"A lot of these dates are poor rabbinical and college students."

Source or links. Pulling the data out of your tookhes doesn't count as valid reference.

This has nothing to do with the behavior of hareidim. Even if they act atrociously, and they do. It is seperate from the issue of imposing a selective minimum fee. Just because you feel that the proprietor of the establishment is getting a raw deal from this sort of patron. That does not mean he has the right to establish a practice that may discriminate against the offending minority.

Secondly think about it if the owners primary concern is table squatters and he feels that the reasonable solution would be a minimum fee why not impose it all across the board. Something the bars management is not doing at least based on the information contained in the article . This suggests although dosent prove that there may be an ulterior motive.

Personally I enjoy restaurants etc. that have minimum fee etc. ( reservation only plus cover charge is even better) as it tends to keep the unseemly element out

++David | October 21, 2012 at 06:19 PM++

Most normal people who go to a fancy shmancy place DO spend good money, and so there is no need to advertise a $25 or $50 minimum. In fact, such an advertisement might be somewhat off-putting to potential patrons.
So if an occasional patron spends less than $25, that's ok.

But with the frumma, the black hat and beard are like carrying a sign that says "I am a cheapskate. I don't tip, I won't buy a cocktail or any of the other more costly drinks, and I won't buy a meal here, either."
So what do you expect a business establishment to do when frumma walk in and hog two seats in the premium money-making section of your restaurant? And on a Saturday night- prime time for restaurants- several frumma shidduch dates show up?

++Simple Jew | October 21, 2012 at 06:46 PM++

Let all frumma shidduch dates go to those "very expensive kosher restaurants", and let them sit there all evening and just order a glass of water.

First of all, Bob Guthrie, you are better than a Xanax.

If the bartender repeatedly comped drinks for only his non - moron customers, the top hat and string brigade would scream anti - semitism.

Here's the only real problem the restaurant has : that handwritten word "religious ".

Probably the girl understands the money angle behind this scenario even less than the guy. Waiters these days make very low salaries and their livelihood depends on tips. Restaurants in NYC have high overhead and must maintain edge in popularity and customership to succeed in a high casualty business environment. What would Kim or Lohan say about sitting at a table next to Gershy and Froumchie?

Posted by: Simple Jew | October 21, 2012 at 06:46 PM

Poor or not, the restaurant is under no obligation to subsidize their shidduch date. It's quite arrogant of you to imply that they should.


"This place is going down. Just like the antisemite cop in CH."

Posted by: simple jew


What do you intend to do? Post negative comments all over the internet or start a fire in the mens' room? I wouldn't put it past you to send in one hundred chasids and just order a glass of water. Start a chasid water-in?

Posted by: ah-pee-chorus | October 21, 2012 at 05:11 PM

I disagree with your view, in my view any business establishment has a right to tell someone who is trying to use someone business for personal use. i.e. you walk into Staples and you go into one of the office furniture display cubical, set up your personal computer with cell phone do you think they need a policy in the window, hell no, that same is with this case.

The question is not about tipping, it is what right has any person to go into someones place of business, and conduct his personal business, and the proprietor, is providing to him a high level area with a beautiful view for nothing. The restaurateur or any business establishment can tel a person who is not there to buy or offer a service to get out.

Posted by: WoolSilkCotton, rock star and sports superstar | October 21, 2012 at 07:17 PM

You are right and let me add on here the question is not if the proprietor could enforce a minimum, for sure he could enforce a charge when you don’t buy anything, but a glass off free water. In my view landlord should call that charge rent.

It's discriminatory, whether the Haredim are acting with class or not. If Kim or Lohan walked in and only ordered water, someone would find a place for them. The reason the restaurant can get away with this is because they know the Haredim won't riot and overturn cars and burn tires in the street like others are known to do in America.

What if a bunch of homeless come into the restaurant, stay there the whole evening, and only order glasses of water?

Sifter,
What exactly is the comparison of Kim K or Lindsay Lohan, both easily recognized celebrities who would instantly draw huge crowds of customers, to the frumma shnorrers? I don't understand your point. Haredim like to sue and make trouble. That is yet another reason why everyone despises them.

Joe Field -

of course. but they cant have a policy which is only enforced against those thay can be identified as jews. the policy itself is fine.

Ah-pee-chorus
My point is that there is no need to have a minimum, if a persons only orders water, the establishment have obsolete right to say get out or pay ex amount. Secondly, if the proprietor decides not to enforce a $25.00 minimum as in this case the two NY Post woman, so what the owner could make a exception if he wants.

WoolSilkCotton, I love your homeless example, I could see than taking sponge baths in the bathrooms.

Easy problem to solve, have a female singer every so often, that will keep the dates out.

Or put pork rinds on the table with the chips and pretzels. Maybe some bacon flavored snacks put on all the tables.

Or display an Israeli flag, and play Hatikvah in the background.

Secondly, if the proprietor decides not to enforce a $25.00 minimum as in this case the two NY Post woman, so what the owner could make a exception if he wants.

Not if the sole basis for his decision is which one is a Jew........

Both sides are wrong.
The restaurant is wrong for profiling customers, and creating discriminatory policies.
The frum customers who patronize the establishment are wrong for going to a high-end restaurant where they can't order anything, and then taking up a table for 3-4 hours chatting and drinking water. You want to do that, go sit on the Coney Island boardwalk.

Posted by: Justsayin
"This has nothing to do with the behavior of hareidim."

It has everything to do with the Chareidim. They would not deserve this treatment unless if they are a constant detriment to the business in question, behaviorally or economic. Your or your groups' actions (or inactions) will compel a place to take any action to offset the loss.

"It's not fair!". Their "holier than thou" actions/inactions and demeanor, their castigation.

"Religious Chareidim would never impose this kind of discrimination against any patron"... Sex segregated Chareidim businesses,... Oops, there goes your argument. Wanna try again?.

Posted by: simple jew
"This place is going down."

Posted by: devorah
"What do you intend to do? Post negative comments all over the internet?."

Well, they could use their iPhone or Android phones to post a very scatting review through the Yelp or Zagat apps,...

...Oh, of course. They are prohibited to own them,... Except for the dozens and dozens that have being caught in photographs with one. And if they can afford such phones, they can easily afford to be paying costumers as the rest of the patrons at this restaurant.

Poor my derriere.

Did anybody bloody think of checking the restaurant's webpage?: http://www.rivercafe.com.

This place sez, no, screams "bring money!". The prices are out of the league of most New Yorkers (Royal White Sturgeon caviar $85 per ounce?, a bottle of Louis Roederer wine, $1.300?). and definitely non-Kosher cuisine.

Only of the few restaurants in NYC that merited a 2012 Michelin rating?. Beautiful (amazing) views from Google maps from the (only 9 tables) terrace, deck (6 tables), and dining room (11 tables,... i.e. a very small amount of seating areas).

Posted by: Simple Jew
"A lot of these dates are poor rabbinical and college students."

In your dreams. From the webpage "It has hosted many of the most famous – from within government and business to celebrity and royalty from around the world."

No, this is a case of Chareidim wannabes that bring their dates and/or friends to be "seen" with the beautiful people,... sans the desire to spend the expected fare.

"The restaurant are discriminating/profiling". Nope, Economics 101. You want the service, you pay for the privilege. You get a group of people, Jewish or Goyim, Religious or Secular, that wants it their way, while providing no economic incentive?. Yeah, they will be on the look out for you then.

Antisemitism?. No, Capitalism vs cheap Social want.

What happened to hotel lobbies? I never heard of them being upset about the shidduch date clientele. How about Starbucks? And isn't is mar'is ayin to walk into a non-kosher restaurant? I guess not, because everyone knows that the men in the "top hat and strings" won't be buying any food.

What do you intend to do? Post negative comments all over the internet or start a fire in the mens' room?

He's going to pray to his dead rebbe for a miracle. If the restaurant capitulates, he'll see it as proof of divine revelation. If nothing happens - well, the rebbe's will is inscrutable.

The reason the restaurant can get away with this is because they know the Haredim won't riot and overturn cars and burn tires in the street like others are known to do in America.

Oh, this is delicious. This may be the most ridiculous comment I've read on this blog, and I'm quite sure you're too stupid to understand the reason.

"The reason the restaurant can get away with this is because they know the Haredim won't riot and overturn cars and burn tires in the street like others are known to do in America."

Sifter is absolutely hysterical. The problem is I do not know he's is serious or being sarcastic!

Of course they Riot! Perhaps not in Manhattan. Granted the Haredim might not overturn cars but that is because they just do not have the physical strength since their muscles have atrophied from lack of physical activities.

Everyone who said that the restaurant must enforce the rules equally without regard to religion is absolutely correct as are those who pointed out that the management needs the seats occupied by paying customers in order to make a living.

By the way, the "freeloading" activity complained of by the restaurant doesn't just happen in the high echelon establishments like the River Cafe.

There is a Starbucks in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, just outside the border of the Kehillah Kedusha of Borough Park. I have on a number of occasions seen shidduch dates there. Usually, however, they will spend the five bucks between two people and get a couple of cups of brewed coffee but I have seen couples take a table and order nothing.

This was one of the reasons (but not the only one) why there is now a sign saying that the tables are only for customers buying the products

This was one of the reasons (but not the only one) why there is now a sign saying that the tables are only for customers buying the products

GODDAMN ANTISEMITES!

another example of where the haredim live in a bizarro world where up is down.

a woman gets taken on a limited (maybe only) date with a prospective husband who buys her a glass of water or nothing at all.

in any other society, the girl's family and friends would not be saying "ah, but he's such a good bochur..." but instead shouting, "run, girl, run!"

and I vote with the wrong and wronger crowd. wrong to be such a cheapstake and take advantage of the restaurant (which just passes the costs on to the paying diners) and wronger to tell the staff to profile.

No issue with the restaurant posting a policy of $25 minimum and applying it to everyone.

but to profile those of us who wear sweats...that's just mean.

If they can't afford to spend a little money (which may very well be the case, I don't argue), then don't expect to sit in a fancy restaurant and enjoy the fancy view. There are plenty of other places to sit (such as the aforementioned "hotel lobby") where you don't have to spend a lot of money.

Still, the restaurant needs to either have a minimum or not have a minimum, instead of applying it selectively.


Posted by: Bob Guthrie | October 21, 2012 at 09:30 PM
Your lack of intelligence is amazing. So I will explain it to you one more time.

- yes the hareidim act terribly

-A selective cover charge on a certain group of people is discriminatory

- you wrote that the hareidim don't act correctly and therefore deserve this kind of treatment . If that is the case then managements corrective action would have to be focused on preventing a certain type of behavior not a certain type of people.

- you wrote that " you or your groups action" etc. this statement just shows how hateful and illogical you are. Assuming that anybody that disagrees with you is doing so because they are part of the offending parties

- You write "Religious Chareidim would never impose this kind of discrimination against any patron"... Sex segregated Chareidim businesses,... Oops, there goes your argument. Wanna try again?."
This statement of yours doesn't fly
- you are trying to justify a wrong with a wrong
- I never wrote that hareidim would never discriminate

A Black couple walk into a fancy kosher restaurat and order a diet coke and a glass of water..............

"Top hat and strings",LOL

Posted by: shoshy | October 21, 2012 at 03:44 PM

When I go out, I wear a top hat and monocle and place a bag with a giant dollar sign on it on the table.

I'm classy that way.

Jeff, you cant understand what you're not willing to see. Calling people 'stupid' means you simply have no argument, and have to resort to ad hominem attacks. Some minorities march, break windows, and generally riot when they feel they are wronged. Do you need examples? Read a newspaper. The hareidim, and Jewish people in general, do not. Therefore they become an easier mark. I am , of course, talking about here in the USA, not in Israel.

However clumsily they express it, this establishment is clearly discriminating on the basis of DRESS, not of religion. I am quite sure that if Mayor Bloomberg or Sheldon Adelson walked into the restaurant, the establishment would fall all over itself to accommodate them and nothing would be said about a minimum. In fact, probably some special treat would be sent out "on the house." But when people signal by their dress that they will never under any circumstance order and pay for even a bite of food, that is another story. The sweat pants business makes it clear that dress/appearance is the concern, not religion per se.

Restaurants and clubs have always refused service based on dress and appearance. Remember coat and tie required and the doorkeepers at the fashionable clubs who would admit only good-looking young people dressed in the height of club-going fashion. That's entirely legal.

extras with their meal. Patrons who are to be discouraged get terrible seats and bad service. Try being a woman alone in a restaurant. You will get a terrible seat--I was once even seated behind a screen, and when I complained I was told flat out that's where they put tables for one--and that was just an inexpensive neighborhood Chinese restaurant. Once I was with a racially mixed group at a diner, and after a very long wait, the server deliberately dumped hot soup in the lap of one of the African-Americans.

And this place is not refusing entrance/service to the tzitzis crowd. They are simply asking for what amounts to table rent. This is just like the cafes around St. Mark's Square in Venice which charge table rent in addition to the cost of food and beverage. You can't sit there all afternoon taking in the sights for the price of a single cup of coffee.

Restaurants discriminate among patrons all the time. Patrons whose custom is desired get the best seating and often get free Oops, it was an accident...not.

Bottom line, the chareidim are 100% wrong to go into a treif upscale restaurant and monopolize valuable seating with no intention of spending money, and the restaurant needs to make clear to their staff that this is not a matter of religion per se. And as far as not enforcing the minimum equally, well, restaurants do not and have never treated patrons equally. Table 1 pays if they want dessert, and Table 2 gets free dessert because the owner wants to curry their favor. No law against that.

The menu has a bottle of Martinelli (Sparkling Apple Cider) for 14.00, Martinelly has OU supervision so the Haredim can purchase one each and have $28 between them so they can be kosher and not to be cheap (but I know it is difficult)

http://www.rivercafe.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/RC_Wine.pdf

Posted by: Justsayin
"Your lack of intelligence is amazing."

Ark!. The call of the Extremist Chareidim!,... Or the expected behavioral response of the insulting, cornered, argument losing chap. Well, both really. =)

"So I will explain it to you one more time."

Oh, Goody!. This should be a fun. ^.^

"yes the hareidim act terribly"

Swing and a miss!. Nice, trying to imply that the discussion is about the whole of the Chareidim. No, no. The discussion (the site's purpose, really) is about the Religious Chareidim zealots, the criminal elements within the community, the rebbehs that try to impose their will on the community or dictate non-chareidim how they should act,... or the ones they feel "entitled" in this case.

"-A selective cover charge on a certain group of people is discriminatory"

Strike two. Overcharging guests that repeatedly frequent an commercial establishment taking valuable areas with no economic incentive is, at worst, price gouging, unreasonable charges, overfilling, excessive charge,... Discrimination is not letting them in because of race, religion, or sex.

"- you wrote that the hareidim don't act correctly and therefore deserve this kind of treatment . If that is the case then managements corrective action would have to be focused on preventing a certain type of behavior not a certain type of people.

Strike three. "These" taking advantage, non-contributing, Chareidim, not "the" Chareidim (as in "the whole of"). Anyways, yes, the management is taking corrective action focused on preventing this behavior on certain individuals, which happen to be a group, which happen to be these few, self-entitled, selfish, Chareidim. Fancy that.

"- you wrote that " you or your groups action" etc. this statement just shows how hateful and illogical you are. Assuming that anybody that disagrees with you is doing so because they are part of the offending parties"

Yer out!. Wrong on opinionated statement one, two and three. Go to the showers for playing the "victim card", bubbeh. Towel and comeback when you are ready to debate... logically.

"- You write "Religious Chareidim would never impose this kind of discrimination against any patron"... Sex segregated Chareidim businesses,... Oops, there goes your argument. Wanna try again?."
This statement of yours doesn't fly
- you are trying to justify a wrong with a wrong
- I never wrote that hareidim would never discriminate"

Nope, it doesn't fly with just you.
-No, pointing out that overcharging based on uneconomical behavior is business, separating/preventing a group of people from entering/shopping/dining at an establishment based on sex IS discriminating.
-No, you didn't, I did, because certain Chareidim's businesses, unlike this restaurant, do discriminate, in the discussion example, females.

Wanna try to "explain it" to me a second time?. Oh, please do so, unless you just want to skip to the Extremist Chareidim secondary method of debating: Insults. Here, let me help you out: "You UnIntelligent Racist Antisemite Goyim Nazi!". There you go, free of charge.

Ah, that was refreshing. Tennis anyone?. =D

Posted by: Paddy
"A Black couple walk into a fancy kosher restaura(n)t and order a diet coke and a glass of water.............."

(...)

(...)

(...)

And?. Well, boyo, if it's joke, provide the punchline. If it's a discussion argument, follow up with additional information.

Posted by: MM
"However clumsily they express it, this establishment is clearly discriminating on the basis of DRESS, not of religion."

Nope, behavior. The offending party just happens to be a group of few individuals dressed in a similar garb.

"I am quite sure that if Mayor Bloomberg or Sheldon Adelson walked into the restaurant,..."

Oi.

"Bottom line, the chareidim are 100% wrong to go into a treif upscale restaurant and monopolize valuable seating with no intention of spending money"

No, the "few" Chareidim that are guilty of this behavior, not the whole of the community.

Jeff, you cant understand what you're not willing to see. Calling people 'stupid' means you simply have no argument, and have to resort to ad hominem attacks.

No argument will convince you people. You're impervious to reason.

The "ad hominem" accusation is the last resort of the evangelical or frum troll who knows he hasn't a leg to stand upon.

The hareidim, and Jewish people in general, do not. Therefore they become an easier mark. I am , of course, talking about here in the USA, not in Israel.

There are no words.

SUCH BUSINESS PRACTICES ARE ILLEGAL PERIOD.

if jews would this the goyim shmyra you would be the first complaining..you have a double standard to haredim..

Posted by: MM
"However clumsily they express it, this establishment is clearly discriminating on the basis of DRESS, not of religion."

Nope, behavior. The offending party just happens to be a group of few individuals dressed in a similar garb.

"I am quite sure that if Mayor Bloomberg or Sheldon Adelson walked into the restaurant,..."

Oi.

"Bottom line, the chareidim are 100% wrong to go into a treif upscale restaurant and monopolize valuable seating with no intention of spending money"

No, the "few" Chareidim that are guilty of this behavior, not the whole of the community.

Posted by: Bob Guthrie | October 22, 2012 at 03:09 PM

No, Guthrie, the discrimination is clearly on the basis of dress. The note to staff describes the two groups of patrons by their attire, not by their behavior. Nothing whatever is said about the behavior of the sweatpants crowd. They could be buying the $100 prix-fixe meal or merely a couple of beers, but they are not dressed in a way acceptable to management. If it were behavior, then the note to staff would say, "If patrons [no mention of dress or appearance] order just water, remind them of the $25 minimum." The concern as expressed is about people dressed in certain ways, not about behavior, although in the case of "top hat and strings" the dress is a proxy for behavior, since no one dressed that way will ever order any food. The sweatpants folks might order everything on the menu in double portions, but they are still wearing sweatpants, and management does not want this upscale establishment to look like a gym. It's not about religion, because nothing is said about Jews who don't wear "top hats and strings."

Of course, I meant only the chareidim who enter this establishment, not all chareidim. There are many Chareidim who wouldn't enter a treif restaurant for any reason, even if it has a nice view. I didn't think it was necesssary to write explicitly "the chareidim who pull this shtick are 100% wrong," but that's obviously what I meant.

B"H

The lack of response from the restaurant to defend the practice is more proof of how wrong this is.

As far as my comment "this place is going down" I don't personally intend to do anything... especially walk into that place. I agree that it would be wrong for a frum person to even walk into that restaurant unless he really needs the bathroom. My comment that the place is going down refers to the idea that they can expect a nice discrimination suit or fines from the government.


"No, Guthrie, the discrimination is clearly on the basis of dress. The note to staff describes the two groups of patrons by their attire, not by their behavior."

No, if you read the article correctly, it's based on behavior by people which happen to be, and they are identify thus, dressed in that manner(A), not the other way around(B).

(A) "The individuals' behavior is taking advantage of the business in a way that's detriment to our bottom line. The majority of them are garbed on a similar manner, so expect the same consistent behavior".
(B) "The individuals are dressed in Jewish UltraOrthodox garbs, so expect not to buy anything, as Jews are prone to".

An identifying factor, not a discriminatory (anti-Semite) decision. So sorry that because of the behavior of the few, the restaurant is wary of the similarly clad community.

"Nothing whatever is said about the behavior of the sweatpants crowd. They could be buying the $100 prix-fixe meal or merely a couple of beers, but they are not dressed in a way acceptable to management."

Strawman argument. Did you bother to check the cafe's website?. i dare say not, because you would then see (and it's pointed out on their attire statement), the "sweatpants crowd", even with $100 bills brisling from under their backwards baseball caps, would not even get near the front lobby.

I quite sure the Chareidim that brought this about are dressed to the nines, and thus be able to partake of the facilities the restaurant offers. Once more, behavior, as stated in the article itself, is the cause of the policy. Dress is just the identificator.

An "identification" that affects the rest of the similarity attired religious group, unfortunately. =/

Posted by: Simple Jew
"The lack of response from the restaurant to defend the practice is more proof of how wrong this is."

Unwillingness or lack of response is not a "fact" of "guilt". That's your opinionated conclusion, not a stated fact.

"I agree that it would be wrong for a frum person to even walk into that restaurant unless he really needs the bathroom."

Un, no,... Now you are swinging wildly the other way. They have all the right in the world to be patrons in the establishment. And "Frum"?,... Bubbeh, pick a side and stick to it.

"My comment that the place is going down refers to the idea that they can expect a nice discrimination suit or fines from the government."

Suit, yes, maybe. Government?, ah, no. You have no way how commerce works, do you?. =P

In short, the behavior/actions/deeds of a selected, selfish, self-entitled few forced a business into a decision that unfairly affects the greater of a larger community.

Unfair?. The River Café didn't started this.

Consequences. Deal.

And what about non-Jewish travelers that get arrested and humiliated for only sin of trying to have a lunch in Kiryas Joel? Only Fruma allowed to discriminate and to hate? To be honest, when I go to a bar or restaurant and paying my money (that I working hard to earn it) to relax and to enjoy food and drinks, I do not want to see these garbage polluting the atmosphere. They have their own places in Flatbush or Williamsburg to swallow Tshulent met Kishke.

I was taught in orthodox schools that you can't go into a non-kosher restaurant because of מארית עין that it looks bad if someone sees you going in

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