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LES Bakery Files Lawsuit Alleging Food Delivery Apps Charged Illegal Fees

Plus, Chinatown’s Dr. Clark is eyeing an expansion next door — and more intel

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Michaeli provides some outdoor seating.
Michaeli Bakery on the Lower East Side
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Michaeli Bakery alleges food delivery companies are charging illegal fees

Michaeli Bakery on the Lower East Side has filed a lawsuit against major food delivery companies — including Grubhub, DoorDash, and Uber Eats — alleging that the businesses have been charging illegal fees to the bakery during the pandemic, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

The lawsuit alleges that the third-party platforms have been charging fees to Michaeli above the current delivery fee cap that is in place in NYC. The cap, which the City Council instated last May, banned food delivery companies from charging restaurants in the city more than 15 percent per delivery order and 5 percent for other order fees during the pandemic, as a temporary measure of relief for struggling restaurants. The report did not specify how much the apps had been charging Michaeli above the cap.

Michaeli’s lawyers told the Wall Street Journal that other businesses plan to join in the lawsuit if it gains class action certification, which they are aiming for. In response, Grubhub called the charges “baseless allegations,” DoorDash similarly refuted the claims, and Uber Eats declined to comment to the newspaper.

In other news

— Sushi Noz chef Nozomu Abe is partnering with Brooklyn-based Japanese tea purveyor Kettl to start selling a rare sencha green tea, Saemidori Tamaryokucha. Packages will be available for sale at Noz Market on the Upper East Side and on Kettl’s website starting Friday, and both the market and Kettl’s Bowery shop will be selling a cold-brewed version of the tea this weekend to kick off the collaboration. A portion of the proceeds go to restaurant relief organization ROAR.

— Lower East Side bagel stalwart Kossar’s Bagels & Bialys is opening a second location in the ground floor of a Chelsea apartment building.

— Gothamist’s Scott Lynch checks out popular ice cream shop Morgenstern’s foray into burgers and fries.

— Fast casual darling Milu has started selling summer picnic boxes on Saturdays with Sichuan-spiced chicken wings, tofu seaweed salad, buttermilk biscuits, and marinated cucumbers. Boxes are $45 apiece.

— Buzzy Hokkaido Japanese spot Dr. Clark in Chinatown is looking to open a next-door bar that some nearby residents may not be too happy about, Bowery Boogie reports.

— The New York State Liquor Authority has adopted a new rule on food delivery fees that has both restaurants and food delivery companies up in arms.

— Nonprofit Think!Chinatown is hosting a summer art and food event on Saturday evening at Forsyth Plaza, starting at 8 p.m. Food sellers at the event include Guangdong street food vendor Mr. Zhang; Vietnamese food vendor Victor Zhang; and smoothie and juice cart vendor Ms. Jiang. Free tickets for the event are available here.

— Fancy Korean steakhouse Cote is selling a blowout grill kit for delivery via Goldbelly that includes ribeye, the restaurant’s short rib galbi, and a six-person beef burger kit for $299.

— Dispatches from eating at home:

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