The Real Reason Salt Bae Is Being Sued By 2 More Employees

Salt Bae, or Nusret Gökçe, is under fire again for the alleged poor treatment of workers in his New York City steakhouse. The Turkish chef has been a viral icon in entertainment and first gained traction in 2017 when a meme of him sprinkling salt on meat went viral (via LADbible). However, Salt Bae has recently become a figure of controversy in the food industry, and even his most loyal supporters have questioned many of his decisions.

One example is when he opened the Boston location of his famed steakhouse, Nusr-Et, during the height of the pandemic in 2020. Furthermore, many have criticized the flashy nature and high prices of his restaurants (via MyLondon). Some also argue that the wages for Salt Bae's workers aren't nearly as much as they deserve. Notably, the hourly wage at the London location is equivalent to a side of mashed potatoes, according to Metro.

Salt Bae's recent lawsuit spotlights alleged discrimination

According to The New York Post, in the most recent lawsuit against the food icon, workers of the chef's New York City steakhouse report being faced with discrimination because there were not Turkish. Bartender Elizabeth Cruz reported inappropriate behavior at the restaurant soon after she was hired in April 2019, saying that she was sexualized by the manager because of her Dominican background. Elsewhere, Angelo Maher, a former waiter, said that he was put in less lucrative sections of the restaurant as other workers. He also said the tip pool was managed with bias. Though Maher no longer works at the steakhouse due to the restaurant releasing workers during the pandemic, he said that he was not rehired like other workers once the restaurant opened back up again, citing this as discriminatory behavior.

Unfortunately, this isn't the first time that workers have cited mistreatment at Salt Bae's NYC restaurant. Another lawsuit filed against the celebrity earlier this year accuses him of hiring five workers as "managers" but leaving them with tasks such as washing dishes. Furthermore, these workers could not qualify for overtime compensation, though they were working over 70 hours a week.