Top Ten Houston Culinary Scandals of 2013: Lawsuits, Rude Restaurant Staff and Rats
September 16, 2013
Photo by Kaitlin Steinberg Paula Deen's son hugs her and tells her she had an "ugly cry."
Paula Deen Makes a Loopy Return at Metro Cooking Houston
Paula Deen's return to the spotlight after months in hiding was alternately emotional and confusing for both Deen and the audience who came to watch her demonstration at the Metro Cooking Houston show. She walked on the stage and commenced to sob for approximately two minutes, seemingly overwhelmed by the show of support after her months out of the limelight stemming from allegations of racism. We reported that Deen's return was "weird," and many readers thought that was a bit harsh, immediately leaping to Deen's defense in the comments. We stand by the fact that we thought she was weird, but we appreciate your concern for a fallen TV star.
October 23, 2013
Photos from Torchy's Facebook and Texas Taco Co. Facebook Who's telling the truth?
Torchy's Tacos' Suit Against Texas Taco Co. Alleges Theft of Food-Prep Bible
As soon as the first Texas Taco Co. opened, in Baytown, diners started sending messages to Torchy's asking, essentially, what's up with your new restaurant? People assumed, because of similarities between the two menus, that Texas Taco Co. was somehow affiliated with Torchy's. Turns out, the two restaurants are entirely different entities, and it does sort of seem like Texas Taco Co.'s menu is eerily similar to that of Torchy's, perhaps because a former Torchy's employee allegedly stole the "Taco Bible" and brought it to Texas Taco Co. That's right, there's a Taco Bible.
November 27, 2013
Photo by Troy Fields Underbelly is the target of a lawsuit by a former employee.
Woman Files Lawsuit Against Underbelly and The Pass & Provisions
In November, news broke of a lawsuit filed against Underbelly and The Pass & Provisions by a former Underbelly staff member who alleges wrongful termination, discrimination and "intentional infliction of emotional distress." The former staff member, Rachel Johnston, claims that she was out dining with friends at The Pass & Provisions when her party was asked to leave their table to make room for other patrons, causing one of her friends to become belligerent. The incident was reported back to Underbelly, who allegedly threatened to fire her, but realized her out-of-work behavior was probably not something they could fire her for. Johnston was later fired for being intoxicated at work, though she claims she wasn't. The case is ongoing, and it's stirred up some commentary on what it's like for a woman to work in a male-dominated kitchen.
5551 Richmond Ave., Houston, TX