Celeb chef Mario Batali sued by workers at Manhattan restaurant Babbo for stingy wages, tip-gouging

New York Daily News - Scott Shifrel
July 22, 2010

Another famous foodie is being sued for stiffing the help. This time it’s Iron Chef Mario Batali who’s being ironfisted with the tips, a lawsuit charges.   Waiters Herman Ricardo Alvarado and Stephanie Capsolas complain in a Manhattan Federal Court action that management at Batali’s Babbo Ristorante Enoteca is stingy.   The famed eatery pays an hourly rate below minimum wage, forces employees to work more than 40 hours a week and to work days that last more than 10 hours, the suit says.   Management also dips into the tip kitting, taking a percentage based on the evening’s wine sales . . .   Batali is the latest in a long line of celebrity chefs and trendy restaurants sued by workers, including 21 Club, Cafe Habana, the Light Horse Tavern, Le Cirque and David Bouley.

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