The word “restaurateur” came from the French, originally meaning a son of the owner of the dining places. In the late nineteenth century, this phrase became used to describe a person who specialized in, or owned, restaurants. In the United States, this word had no specific use but was instead used to refer to the owner of a general store. In other countries, the word meant either a cook manager, etc., or a fellow food enthusiast. The word “restaurateur” eventually came to refer specifically to the operator or owner of a restaurant or dining place. In France, the word restaurateurs referred specifically to food lovers and traders.