It’s a common mistake when covering stories about restaurants and restaurateurs – putting an N in restauraNteur (in writing or saying the word).

It’s a common and ‘understandable’ mistake. You’d think a person who runs a restaurant would be called a restauraNteur.




In my local news, there’s been a lot of coverage about restaurants closing – and the restaurateur behind them.

When I train newsrooms on how to avoid common mistakes – restaurateur is one of the problem words we cover.

Some people just want to know WHAT the problem words are.

Others want to know WHY.

When I taught Business English in Asia for a decade, the students would often ask WHY questions like “Why is there no N in restaurateur?”

If you are interested in knowing WHY there is no N in restaurateur – here is a brief and simple explanation (as I understand it)

Restaurant – comes from French and was used to describe a place that served food to RESTORE a person’s energy and well-being.

Just think restaur – restore

In French, a person who does something often has the suffix – ateur:

Collabor-ateur *1

Am- ateur *2


So, the person who runs the restoring restaurant – is a restaur-ateur not a restauraNteur

TB media cc Slide1


*1 – in many English words the suffix became –OR but restauater remained

*2 Amateur – is someone who does things for LOVE (ama) nor money


One thought on “How to use restaurant and restaurateur in writing news – why there’s no N in restaurateur

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s