Former bartender Connie Rodriguez is claiming that she did not receive an hourly wage, instead relying solely on tips as compensation. Rodriguez is also alleging that manager Andrew Walters “frequently made unwelcome sexual advances” toward her, including inappropriate touching, calling her “retarded,” and using vulgar language. After one alleged incident, Rodriguez claims she was fired. The complaint is in full below, in which Rodriguez is seeking unspecified damages.
Kirschenbaum is going hard on this one, telling Eater, “[La Marina] will pay dearly.”
La Marina did not immediately respond to Eater’s request for comment. Update: In a statement, La Marina’s attorney called the allegations “baseless” and claimed Rodriguez was fired for “her failures as an employee.”
“La Marina diligently follows all federal and state wage and hour laws and does not tolerate demoralizing or harassing behavior from anyone on our team,” attorney Jerald Tenenbaum writes. “This is a frivolous lawsuit which will be dismissed in due course.”
La Marina, located at 348 Dyckman Street right on the Hudson River, opened in 2012. With more than 75,000 square-feet of waterfront space, its a destination for outdoor dining and drinking that’s attracted people like Beyonce and Jay-Z.
Kirschenbaum, perhaps every restaurateur’s biggest nightmare, has won formidable lawsuits against restaurants like Babbo, which required Mario Batali and his team to pay $5 million to settle a suit in 2012.