Los Angeles - A group of culinary students is calling for a boycott of Bottega Louie Restaurant on the basis of racial discrimination. The group of mixed races (Blacks, Hispanics, Asians and Caucasians) arrived at 10am to celebrate the end of classes, but were not able to be seated until 10:30am when the main dining room opens due to the size of their party. They say that while they waited they decided to sit at the bar to order a few drinks. Around them they saw other patrons sipping on a variety of alcoholic beverages such as Bloody Marys and Mimosas. They waited at the bar for 10 minutes with no one acknowledging their presence before flagging down a server who pointed to a 'manager type'. The manager told them that alcohol was not served until 11am despite the presence of other people with alcohol in front of them. When the group pointed that fact out, they say the manager had no response. One person asked him, 'It's like that?' The response from the manager was a simple 'yes'. The group had no idea why they wouldn't be served if other patrons were and have assumed that it was racial discrimination.
This morning I spoke to Mark who manages in the mornings and he was completely unaware that this incident took place. He acknowledged that the bar back was serving drinks when he should not have been as he's not a bartender, and he's been reprimanded. The restaurant's policy is to not serve alcohol until 10:30am when the main dining room opens. Currently the restaurant has no idea who the students spoke to but was horrified to find that they feel discriminated against. Mark assured me that they would find out who this mystery manager was and will be reaching out to the students as well.