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A Brooklyn Palestinian Restaurant Says It Was Flooded With Fake Negative Reviews

Plus, Queer Soup Night is back — and more intel

A spread of options at Ayat, a Palestinian restaurant in Bay Ridge.
Ayat in Bay Ridge

Ayat, a Palestinian restaurant in Bay Bridge, Brooklyn — considered to be one of the city’s top new restaurants — took to Instagram this week to share allegations that it had been getting unfairly harassed online.

Owner Abdul Elenani told Eater that on Saturday he began getting notifications from his staff that they were receiving repeat calls from someone claiming they were “refused service for being Israeli.” Elenani says he took the accusation seriously and asked his staff to find the person’s number. He then reached out to the caller directly, who claimed to have a video of the alleged incident that he was threatening to post online. The video — which Elenani believes did not exist to begin with — was never posted, and, instead, within a few-hour period, Ayat began getting dozens of one-star Google reviews and calls from blocked numbers with “anti-Palestinian” sentiments.

Elenani told Eater he feels that even calling his restaurant “Palestinian” opens his business up to potential harassment, despite the fact that “Palestinian culture and food has been around for thousands years.” Since he posted on Instagram, there is now a viral TikTok rallying for support of Ayat and customers have flooded his page, adding more five-star reviews.

A new spot to grab a carb-loaded, pre-Amtrak meal

Penn Station and its immediate vicinity is not exactly known for stellar restaurant options. However, restaurateur Andrew Carmellini is hoping to change that when he opens a new uptown outpost of his pasta-hit Bar Primi, near the Moynihan Train Hall, in 2022.

Queer Soup Night is back

Brooklyn’s favorite pop-up soup event has returned. On Saturday, October 16th fans are encouraged to stop by for a Fort Greene Park picnic meet-up starting at 3 p.m. As in pre-pandemic times, Queer Soup Night is providing the soups; guests are responsible to BYOB (beverages and/or a blanket).

The East Village is getting a “plant-based brewery”

Dubbing beer as plant-based may seem redundant — and it is in many cases. Bowery Boogie first reported that Belse — a vegan restaurant and brewery — was coming to the Bowery, a reincarnation of the team’s Dallas restaurant of the same name. Now, E.V. Grieve, shares that the coming soon signs are up.