Woman Falls Ill, Dies After Eating at Michelin-Starred Restaurant

RiFF in Valencia, Spain, closed as authorities investigate
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 21, 2019 4:48 PM CST
Updated Feb 22, 2019 12:33 AM CST

(Newser) – A 46-year-old woman fell ill and died after dining at a Michelin-starred restaurant in Spain, the Guardian reports. Health authorities have confirmed 29 cases of food poisoning in diners who ate at RiFF in Valencia between Feb. 13 and 16; the unnamed woman ate there with her family Saturday evening and died at home early Sunday. Her husband and son, 12, also experienced diarrhea and vomiting but are recovering, the BBC reports. "We will have to wait for the autopsy to be carried out on the woman before we can determine whether it was the ingestion of a food that directly caused her death, or whether it prompted a state that led to this fatal outcome, or if she had an existing condition," the regional health chief said, per El Pais.

"With the exception of the person who died, all those who fell ill have shown light symptoms—mainly vomiting," said the regional health authority in a statement Thursday. Food safety officers inspected the restaurant Monday and found no obvious answers, but food samples were taken for analysis. Head chef and owner Bernd H. Knöller offered his condolences and said that preliminary inspections found that health regulations had been followed. "I’ve taken the decision to close the restaurant until we know the precise causes and can reopen with the necessary guarantees for the safety of both staff and customers," he says. (E. coli claimed the lives of two children from the same family.)

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