Young and Hungry

Rogue 24′s ‘Reservation Agreement’ Now More of a ‘Guest Questionnaire’

Eater DC follows up with chef R.J. Cooper after posting a copy of his two-page "Reservation Agreement" that patrons must sign prior to being seated at his Bladgen Alley hotspot Rogue 24. The news of the Coop's lawyerly booking policy spread far and wide this week. Even Time magazine made mention of it. In light of this, the Rogue Toque has revised the policy and the document itself, which he now describes as more of a "guest questionnaire."

The Coop tells Eater that he had no idea the contract would create such a shitstorm:

"No, I didn’t. But it’s not any different than going to Minibar or Alinea. The difference is that Alinea has six reservationists that can handle that; we have one. Minibar has six seats; we have 52. Komi has a no camera and phone policy in their restaurant. What’s the difference? Is it going to make experience better to have a phone? If it does, please tell me, because I hate my phone. I'd rather not have to deal with the 500 emails and 60 voice messages I get every day. I’d rather just sit and really enjoy the experience of a place like this. Are we doing this out of arrogance? No. Are we doing it out of being hyped? No. We’re doing it to make sure you as a diner have a valued experience.

  • Jane

    I know I'm supposed to be outraged, but everything he says is making me fall in love with him a little bit more. No cell phones? No cameras? Yes, please.

    Every time I go to someplace like 2941, they ask for my credit card number and any dietary concerns. I am made aware that I will be charged if I fail to show up. This is par for the course. Props to RJ for getting the best talent in town and doing what he wants.

  • Reality

    My preditction OUT OF BUSINESS sign in three months or they will have to pull this ridiculous pretentious reservation agreement. I have spent 175.00 on Dinner before and did not have all the crap to deal with. In this new economy this is a little excessive however I am sure they will get some dumb ass to eat in the "Alley" that they probably kicked out the homeless to set up tables!

  • tomaj

    their form reminds me of the story of "hummingbird to mars", the quickly-defunct "speakeasy" that gave its patrons a list of rules, one stating that members of the press or even bloggers are not permitted to write about it in any way/shape/form. people broke the rules anyway. and the place closed down.

  • droopy

    Half star is my rating!!
    Why do I feel like almost 4 hours after my meal and $500 for 2 guests I have the need to go find something substantial to eat when I got home?
    RJ is very dedicated as well as he is a visible upset nasty chef and it shows....for everyone to see.
    Our food was at 20% outstanding and 80% forgetable
    Something is really wrong about this, the concept the journey and mostly the way we felt after our almost endless meal.
    I love the concept, I love the amount of dedication put into this and I love the will to create something absolutely new and unique.
    Alinea does that . The french laundry does that, El Bulli does that
    Rogue 24 falls terribly on an idea or concept that it's built on ego and it's not executed well at all.....the food is very forgetable and the best part is the desserts.
    Everything else needs substance and humility.
    I would give one year and wait for more substance from his project pig tails to open.....more affordable and definitely more in his professional league
    I love to experience everything once, but this time at Rouge 24 my experience was as exciting as watching the paint dry.......very slowly

  • J

    I say no phones is an awesome policy. I used to hate people checking their phone in restaurants but now I find myself doing it as well.