The following is a copy of the note that I sent to The Melting Pot - Minneapolis: ""On Wednesday evening (10/19), my wife and I dined at your restaurant. My wife had two $50 gift certificates. The gift certificates had been given to my wife by associates of hers who own a magazine based in the Twin Cities. The certificates had been used as payment for advertising space in the magazine, and were later transferred to our possession. When we entered the restaurant we checked with the hostess to assure that we could use both certificates to their full value. There was a note on the back of each certificate stating that, despite a fine print disclaimer stating to the contrary, both certificates could be used at the same table. I would like to reiterate that we checked, and were assured that both certificates would be fully honored. After being seated, a server came to give us water. After five minutes, she came back to tell us that we would have a new server. Our new server stated that the first server's shift had ended, and she had gone home. We saw our first server 50 minutes later, serving another table. My initial thought is that there is absolutely no need to lie to us. My second thought was, of course, suspicion as to why we were lied to. It struck a chord. Next, the manager came to our table. He did not introduce himself as the manager (we only discovered that he was the manager when the server stopped by), and we did not see him stop at any other tables. Judging by his demeanor, it felt as though we were being sized up. I should add that I am African-American, and my wife is Mexican-American. Unfortunately, being sized up in retail establishments, and restaurants is not a new thing for either of us. We obviously live in a society that has not fully shaken its problems with racism. So after allowing us to order based on the full $100 of our gift certificates, you can imagine our surprise when the server came out and said that his manager had told him that our $100 in gift certificates would only be honored as $83. We were told that the computer wouldn't allow our meal to be rung up any other way. Being someone who has worked in retail, as well as a person who has friends who have developed software for retail establishments, I know that this statement was completely false. A proper manager can find a way to get around such matters. The only conclusion that we could draw is that we had been sized up as two people (of color) who could not be trusted, and did not have the class to properly compensate our server with the tip that he had earned. We were livid. However, we are people with class and manners, and, rather than raising a fuss, we decided to deal with this matter through official channels. It is clear to us, unfortunately, that the manager of The Melting Pot, with whom we spoke earlier was not a person of the high ethical standard that we hold ourselves to. Not only that, but the man was a coward who could not deliver this fake information himself. So our server had been sent out to deliver a second blatant lie. We paid our wrongly inflated bill (feeling robbed, as our bill should have been $3 + tax), and paid a $25.00 tip. We will be going to the corporate HQ of The Melting Pot with this story, as well as to all of our friends. We have many friends. We have posted reviews [online], and relayed our story over our Facebook networks. At least 30 people have already told us that they will never go to The Melting Pot. We will also be relaying our story to the owners of the magazine who gave us the certificates, and have now been swindled for advertising space in their publication. I am confident that this was a case of racial profiling, as well as a case of theft. It is wrong, and it will be know to all that are willing to pay attention, and stand up for social justice. I hope those few dollars were worth it to your pathetic establishment.""