Top Ten Houston Culinary Scandals of 2013: Lawsuits, Rude Restaurant Staff and Rats

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Photo from La Fisheria Facebook
The furor has died down, and kids are still out by 7.
August 7, 2013
La Fisheria Bans Kids after 7 p.m. and Everyone on the Internet Has an Opinion

La Fisheria made national news after an announcement that the owner, celebrity chef Aquiles Chavez, decided to ban kids under 9 years of age after 7 p.m. out of respect for other patrons. Chavez told the Chronicle that the decision came after customers complained about children running around the restaurant while adults were trying to have a romantic or low-key evening away from children -- their own or otherwise. The decision made national news and sparked debate about whether it's okay for a restaurant to ask unruly children to leave or for a "family friendly" restaurant to ban children after a certain hour. Generally, folks seemed to be behind La Fisheria's decision.

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Photo by Troy Fields
Corner Table has seen quite a bit of drama this year.
August 16, 2013
Corner Table Restaurant Valet Driver Accidentally Kills Motorcyclist

So 2013 wasn't a great year for Corner Table or Bruce Molzan (aside from the fact that we gave them a pretty good review). Molzan had nothing to do with the news that in August one of his valet drivers made a right turn from a left lane, striking and killing a motorcyclist on Westheimer. We weren't able to get many more details on the incident from the police or from Corner Table, but folks on Facebook were quick to criticize the valet business in general and its overwhelming presence in parking-strapped Houston.

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Photo from VoicePlaces
Hey Papa Zack, hands to yourself!
September 11, 2013
Local Chef Arrested; Suspected of Attempted Sexual Assault

Zackery Ray Alolabi, the owner of the Original Napoli Italian Restaurant Chain, was accused of attempted sexual assault on July 19 by a female employee. The police report states that the woman, who had been working for Alolabi for the past two years, claimed the chef, who is affectionately known as "Papa Zack," had been trying to kiss her and had been making "unwanted advances" all day. She stated in the report that he was highly intoxicated and eventually approached her, "placing his exposed penis in her face," before attempting to lie on top of her. In addition, Alolabi didn't realize everything he was doing could be heard ... seems the accuser's ex-husband was listening in via a cellphone that had not been hung up. Whoops. Alolabi is scheduled to be arraigned on December 12.

Location Info

Corner Table

2736 Virginia St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Maggie Rita's Mexican Grill

600 Travis St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

La Fisheria

4705 Inker St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Napoli Italian Pasta & Gourmet Pizza By Papa Zack

5551 Richmond Ave., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Texas Taco Co.

4609 Garth Road, Baytown, TX

Category: Restaurant

Torchy's Tacos

2411 S. Shepherd Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Underbelly

1100 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Provisions

807 Taft, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

The Pass

807 Taft St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant


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4 comments
jennytulltx
jennytulltx

I have eaten at Napoli for years and never been offered Zack's sausage.  Hrumph!

BP88
BP88

The Molzan protesters weren't from Corner Table. They were formerly employees at Ruggles before it closed.

flavia8
flavia8

@BP88

True, the Corner Table employees have yet to experience an ordeal from the Bruce Almighty, beyond the everyday gropes probably

KaitlinS
KaitlinS topcommenter

@BP88 Thanks, I'll revise.

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