With the opening of Tilted Kilt today in South Portland, Maine has its first Hooters-style "breastaurant." In a 2012 report on the boom of these types of chains, the Portland Press Herald noted that Ron Lynch, CEO of Arizona-based Tilted Kilt, "bristles at the 'breastaurant' moniker," as "the word implies that the company's success is based purely on sex appeal."
There's nothing inherently wrong with selling sex appeal. But a denial of the reality is problematic, and if you have any doubt about what the true product is at the "Celtic-themed" sports bar, check its Facebook feed, which has just one single image of food and drink among dozens of posts objectifying waitresses clad scantily in the company's signature mini-kilts and plaid bras. Apparently there are also male employees at the franchise — "for female guest enjoyment," according to a press release, though the uniforms for men feature much more modest kilts.
After soliciting an interview with Eater, a company spokesperson and the new owners of the South Portland location, Little Caesars Pizza franchisees Dave and Joy DuBois, declined to answer the following questions:
How did the casting call go?
Have you had any negative reactions since announcing an opening in Maine? Do you worry about deterring business based on the highly revealing female uniforms?
Are employees paid the tipped minimum wage? Are there workplace benefits like paid sick leave and healthcare?
At least one Tilted Kilt location has been sued before for sexual harassment by an employer. But with women on display, what's the harassment policy if customers get out of hand verbally or physically?
If the men are there "for female guest enjoyment," why are their outfits so conservative relative to the women's?
What is it you're hoping to bring to the community with the area's first restaurant focused on the sex appeal of its female employees?
Be sure to report back if you do check out Tilted Kilt's extensive pub menu, featuring such dishes as its Big Arse® Classic burger, Sadie's Stuffed Breasts (chicken, of course), or Double D Burger (oh, that last one stands for "Dublin Dare," which "boasts two deep fried patties" and a liability disclaimer).
200 Gorham Road, South Portland, website. Open daily 11 a.m. to midnight.