Tom Colicchio may get rave reviews for his cooking but his employees say the Top Chef is a crook. The celebrity restaurateur, head judge on Bravo’s popular Top Chef television show and love magnet for gay bears across the internets is sued in Federal by a former waitress who accused him of "misappropriating employee tips, withholding some overtime pay and sometimes failing to pay minimum wage."
City Room at The New York Times has the details and a copy of the indictment. "In the lawsuit, the waitress, Nessa Rapone, who used to work at the bustling, moderately priced Craftbar restaurant at 900 Broadway between 19th and 20th Streets, asserted that the company improperly shared employee tips with supervisors, did not keep proper time records and illegally retaliated by firing her when she protested."
Colicchio’s nationwide chain of restaurants— including Craft, Craftbar and Craftsteak—were also named in the lawsuit. Colicchio and his partners earned great success, says attorney Justin M. Swartz, but "this success, however, has come at the expense of the restaurant’s hourly service workers."
That story—and a recipt from an evening at Craft—should be some food for thought for foodies.