In today's entry, I'm pleased to relate that I've learned a new word: restaurateur.
I went to Corner Table this weekend and lapsed into "amateur critic" mode, looking at everything, questioning everything, keeping my senses open. I found a plaque commemorating the owner as "2007 Restaurateur of the Year," and giggled to myself over the apparent spelling error, for I knew it was missing an N. You know, restauranteur, someone who owns a restaurant?
Yet it was I who was in error: Oxford English Dictionary describes restauranteur (with the N) as an "erroneous form" and cites the mistake originating as early as 1949. The word restaurateur comes from restaurant, of course, which the OED indicates is the French substantive present participle of restaurer, "to restore" (e.g., health, vitality). So a restaurant is a place which restores, and a restaurateur is a restorer rather than, by strictest definition, the office of restoring-place-owner. You can see where one would get confused, but studying the etymology clears everything up.
However, they did screw up "Wisconsin," even though it appears correctly on the previous line. That' s just a small oversight any copyeditor would catch, but now it appears on all the drink menus for small people to feel superior over. Maybe that's another service this establishment supplies: bolstering your self-esteem.