Restaurant Workers Sue Mario Batali Over Pay

Lawsuit claims management withheld tips
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 13, 2010 2:45 PM CDT
Chef Mario Batali watches an NBA basketball game between the Utah Jazz and the New Orleans Hornets in New Orleans, Friday, April 9, 2010.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(Newser) – Celebrity chef Mario Batali faces a lawsuit from 27 employees of his renowned Del Posto restaurant in New York City, the Wall Street Journal reports. The staff claims that tip money and extra income from banquets were never paid. Specifically, the suit claims that Del Posto improperly pooled workers' tips and withheld nearly 10% of gratuities on wine and cheese sales.

This is the third time that Batali's company, the Batali-Bastianich Hospitality Group, has been sued over alleged tip trickery. “This is not about just getting some money,” an organizer involved with one of the suits against Batali said. “This is about really fighting to make change in the work place that are going to improve jobs and improve the restaurant that they work in.”

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