Kitchen staff at the upscale Morton’s of Chicago steakhouse in Boca Raton stuck raw vegetables in their underwear before serving them to unsuspecting diners, according to a lawsuit filed in a Palm Beach County court.
In his harassment action against the Chicago-based restaurant chain, sous-chef Reggie Williams claims he witnessed a colleague at the eatery near the Town Center mall “place stalks of asparagus inside his underwear, next to his anal/genital area in order to simulate his penis,” then “serve that asparagus to Morton’s unsuspecting paying customers.”
I’m told cucumbers were involved, too. All together now: Ewwwwww!
“This was unquestionably unhygienic and reprehensible behavior,” said Coral Gables lawyer Jorge Silva, who represents Broward resident Williams and his wife Crystal, the co-plaintiff. “Reggie and other kitchen staffers called attention to the food handling practice, but management did nothing.”
It’s no wonder, Silva said, since one of the managers dressed up as a vagina at last year’s company Halloween party!
“The climate in the restaurant is that employees better have a thick skin or they don’t belong,” Silva said. “Some workers who complained were fired.”
State records show the steakhouse was inspected six times over the past 18 months and, each time, was rated as “meeting standards.”
Williams has been on leave from the restaurant since February when, he alleges, a co-worker followed him into a storage area and allegedly exposed himself to him.
Williams is seeking an undetermined amount of money from Morton’s, including punitive damages for assault, battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress and civil rights violations.
In addition to Morton’s, the lawsuit names district manager Todd Shepard, general manager Larry Thomas, and Boca staffers Edmund Bleus and Robinson Bur-Marie.
Bleus, according to the court filing, allegedly tried “to kiss other male co-workers, to grab them, including their private parts, and hug them.”
“Edmund would come behind male workers aggressively, lick their ears, grab their buttocks and simulate dry-humping/anal intercourse,” the lawsuit reads.
And that’s when Bleus didn’t parade around the kitchen while “sexually abusing male co-workers, both physically and verbally, using the asparagus in his private areas as a phallic prop.”
Morton’s policy is to not to comment on active litigation.