A fancy Upper East Side Italian eatery has been named in a lawsuit filed by a mother and daughter who were victims of a tableside flambé presentation gone terribly wrong. According to the lawsuit filed just before the new year, plaintiffs Judith Katz and daughter Laura Katz were dining at Bocca East in November of 2013 when Laura was "dowsed [sic] in flames, lit on fire, engulfed in flames and severely burned by...employees who were in the process of flambéeing a dish in the crowded dining room."
Laura was burned on her "head, neck, face, lips, hand, hair and ears;" her mother was also injured trying to extinguish her daughter, according to the Post.
Bocca East owner Thomas Vita Bifulco and partner Tarek Alam are named in the suit, which seeks unspecified damages for the injuries, "shock, fright and emotional distress" and "wanton disregard for the life, health and safety." The restaurant is under new ownership as of six months ago.
The lawsuit doesn't specify what dish caused the incident—and there is no longer a flambé presentation listed on the menu—but there's a least one other record of the incident. "this is the worst place in the wolrd [sic]!!!!! the food is horrible. the service is terrible. i watched someones hair catch on fire. an ambulance had to come and take them away. it was due to negligence on their part," one Yelper wrote. "i personally signed up for yelp today just to be able to tell other people not to ever go." The restaurant can now also be blamed for creating another Yelper.