Zaka Japanese Restaurant Closes Hibachi Section, Sues Chef.
BY: LITIGATION DESK | BocaNewsNow.com
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Copyright © 2023 MetroDesk Media, LLC) — The Hibachi Chef at a Boca Raton restaurant walked off the job after getting into a verbal altercation with a customer. That chef is now being sued by the restaurant owner for leaving the eatery without anyone to replace him.
The Zaka Japanese Restaurant located at 9858 Clint Moore Road had to close its Hibachi section, according to the court filing, when the Hibachi Chef walked off the job. There’s a shortage of Hibachi chefs — claims an attorney for the restaurant — and there was no way to replace Chef Thanh M. Huang. The restaurant is suing Huang, claiming: “Hoang, as a hibachi chef, possessed at least two fiduciary duties to Zaka, including: Duty of loyalty, which obligated Hoang, as the fiduciary, to put the interests of Zaka, as the beneficiary, first, and ahead of the fiduciary’s self-interest, and to refrain from exploiting the relationship for the fiduciary’s personal benefit.
Duty of care, which obligated Hoang to carry out his responsibilities in an informed and considered manner, as well as to act as an ordinary prudent person would act in the management of his or her own affairs. In fact, since Hoang possessed special skills as a hibachi chef, and became a fiduciary on the basis of his representations of special skills or expertise as a hibachi chef, Hoang is under a duty to use those skills at Zaka.”
The complaint, however, does not state that there was a contract between the restaurant and Huang. From the filing: “Zaka employs a hibachi chef to operate its hibachi section, which contains nine (9) tables. A hibachi chef is a member of a Japanese restaurant who prepares distinct types of grilled food (which are served to customers who sit at tables situated around the grill) typically on a large metal flat grill. Currently, hibachi chefs are scarce in the marketplace.
Further, it takes approximately six months for a person to complete hibachi training. In August 2022, Zaka hired Hoang as the restaurant’s only hibachi chef. During a work shift on March 10, 2023, Hoang was observed screaming at a server in front of a customer. Hang subsequently refused to follow Tang’s instruction to cease the disruption. Hoang then discontinued work. Tang warned Hoang that he would be responsible for the loss of closing the restaurant as Hong was Zaka’s only hibachi chef.
Hoang left the restaurant. Hang subsequently failed to show-up for his other scheduled shifts. Further, Hoang did not provide Zaka with any rationale or explanation for his absence from the restaurant. Zaka immediately conducted a search for a new hibachi chef. However, Zaka has not found a replacement chef.
As a result of Hang’s departure, Zaka was forced to close the restaurant’s hibachi section (which included: (a) cancelling all reservations for the night of March 10, 2023, as well as the rest of the week; and (b) stop taking reservations for, and cease service to walk-in, hibachi customers.
The hibachi section remains closed. Zaka retained the undersigned attorney to represent its interest in this matter and is obligated to pay said counsel a reasonable fee for his services.”
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