An Atlanta restaurant has released an apology after it denied service to basketball Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins. The ordeal started last Saturday when Wilkins tweeted that he had been denied service at Le Bilboquet, an upscale French restaurant in the Buckhead neighborhood.
Wilkins spent 12 seasons with the Atlanta Hawks during his playing career, included the hashtag #turnedawaybecauseimblack in his tweet.
Replying to followers on Twitter, Wilkins indicated that he was told by employees at the restaurant that there were no tables available. However, he said he was later told that he wasn’t dressed to the restaurant’s standards.
The “Policies” section on its website, Le Bilboquet includes attire suggestions.
Wilkins says he was wearing “designer casual pants and a shirt” at the time he was trying to get a table. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, the restaurant issued a statement on Saturday saying its dress code “protects our restaurant’s culture.”
“We have received consistent complaints from our patrons regarding other guest’s wardrobe choices,” the statement read. “As a result, to protect our restaurant’s culture, we installed a minimum standard in our ‘business casual’ attire dress code which includes jeans and sneakers but prohibits baseball caps and athletic clothing including sweat pants and tops. Though the definition of ‘casual’ is ever evolving, we strive to maintain our policy requirements daily but it isn’t a perfect system.”
Then the next day the restaurant issued another statement apologizing to Wilkins.
“We want to apologize to Mr. Wilkins for his experience at our restaurant and also for any confusion our dress code may have caused,” the statement read. “We in no way intended for him to feel unwanted, and welcome an open dialogue with him.”
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