The high-end Italian restaurant in DC has faced backlash after protesters harassed Sen. Ted Cruz and his wife last week as they were having dinner.
Smash Racism D.C. proudly posted the video of anti-Kavanaugh protesters entering the restaurant and interrupting the Republican Senator and his wife as they dined at Fiola, a three-star Italian restaurant in downtown Washington D.C.
You can read our ClashDaily coverage here:
The impact on Fiola has been a nightmare.
Chef-owner, Fabio Trabocchi, says he’s had to shut down social media and hire security in the wake of what he calls a ‘PR disaster’ and a ‘crazy rumor’ that he was the one that tipped protesters that the Cruzes were dining at his establishment.
He wrote an email to customers urging them to come back to his eatery.
He wrote: ‘We have no idea how the protesters knew to come to Fiola, but some in the media have suggested that we intentionally leaked his presence.
‘How insane to imagine we choose to host an attack in our own restaurant!
‘As crazy as that idea is, the negative effects of the repetition of this false statement is unprecedented in our careers.
‘We had to take down our social media temporarily because we received thousands of hateful comments.
‘Our reservation lines are inundated with calls from people who are taunting our staff and threatening to destroy our restaurant.
‘Maria and I have personally received death threats. We would have never thought such a thing was possible in the restaurant business.’
He adds: ‘We want to make it crystal clear that would never participate in or would condone a protest of anyone of any political stripe inside one of our restaurants.’
Mr Trabocchi says that staff at all his restaurants will be given extra training in how to handle situations like this in the future, while describing it as a symptom of ‘the divided politics in America now.’
Last week, Trabocchi had posted a message on Twitter commending the ‘remarkable grit and calm’ of his employees in the wake of the protest.
Restaurant staff had hidden the couple in the kitchen until the police arrived to remove the protesters.
The ‘outrage mobs’ that are fuelled by unhinged leftists like Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) have no problem disrupting people as they go about their everyday lives.
The Washington Post published an article today that says no restaurant is prepared for this kind of action.
The outrage machine immediately engaged. Fiola’s social media accounts were attacked. Its Yelp page was bombarded with so many one-star smears that San Francisco-based Yelp had to initiate an “active cleanup alert.” Fiola’s phone and reservation lines were tied up with calls — sometimes 50 calls a day from the same number. Owners Fabio and Maria Trabocchi and their staff members were threatened, either for not doing enough to protect Cruz and his wife or for allegedly tipping off the protesters to the senator’s presence.
“We have received several life-threatening messages, and so has the staff,” Fabio Trabocchi said during a trans-Atlantic call from Venice. “The police have been informed, both to be vigilant for the restaurant and . . . to be vigilant to my house, mostly because my kids live there. Me and Maria, doing the jobs that we’re doing, we’re not always at home.”
Source: Daily Mail
Trabocchi explained to WaPo what had happened last week:
- a staffer from Sen. Cruz’s office made a reservation
- the front staff was briefed on VIP customers coming to the restaurant that night, including the Cruzes
- 6 protesters arrived about an hour before Ted and Heidi Cruz did, but took seats at the bar and ‘acted just like customers’
- once the Cruzes entered, Trabocchi says, ‘their intentions were clear’
- 6 more protesters quickly entered from the front of the restaurant and tried to get face-to-face with Senator Cruz, but were stopped by restaurant staff
- the front of the house staff blocked the couple from protesters and escorted them out the side door of the restaurant
- the Cruzes were escorted back into the restaurant’s kitchen by restaurant employees where they stayed for 10 minutes as the protesters were removed by police
- once the protesters were gone, the Cruzes then went back to their table and had their meal
Trabocchi didn’t just denounce the claims of tipping off the protesters, he has personally hired an investigator to determine who it was that did tip them off.
Trabocchi said such a charged political atmosphere places more responsibilities on restaurateurs. One of the keys for staff, the chef said, is to remain calm in the face of angry protesters. Don’t react and escalate the situation.
“I don’t think it’s a requirement of any of the servers . . . to have a confrontation and act like a SWAT team,” Trabocchi said. “There is no restaurant that is ready for this. It’s a completely new situation, and it’s unfair to expect that a staff working at a restaurant will expose themselves to a physical danger or risk.”
Source: Washington Post
Here is the full statement from Trabocchi:
What do you think?