A lawsuit has been filed against Gammeeok, a Koreatown restaurant in Manhattan, in the United States, over claims that it served two customers a dead rat in their soup, as per a report in Eater. The restaurant was closed by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene following an inspection of the incident on Wednesday.
“No New York City restaurant is authorized to have mice or rats on the menu and we are investigating further,” Fabien Levy, a spokesperson for Mayor Eric Adams told the outlet.
On March 14, Eunice L Lee, took to Instagram to share the incident. She said, “After seeking legal counsel, my husband and I now feel free to share something that happened to us over the weekend. We ordered in from a well-known restaurant called Gammeeok in K-Town and found the most disgusting thing in our food. If you’re squeamish, skip my next 2 stories. We’re doing this to spread awareness and hopefully make sure the right people are held accountable.”
A video showing what looks to be a dead mouse in a takeout container of beef, rice and vegetable soup is seen on the second slide of the Instagram post. “So disgusting. There’s a dead rat in our soup. We just puked,” Ms Lee said in the video.
“Also: We have been going to this restaurant for a decade and are otherwise proud supporters of Asian cuisine and culture. This incident is in no way to be used to fuel race- based hate or prejudice and I will have an issue with anyone who uses these posts to fit that narrative,” she said in the post.
According to Eater, the restaurant responded to the claims in the comments section disputing the presence of the rodent in the couple’s order before the couple disabled comments on their Instagram post.
“Hi. This is Gammeeok. We are sorry for this situation. What is posted on SNS is not the truth. We have been regularly inspected every two weeks by a disinfection company for several years, and there have been no traces of mice. They demanded money and threatened, and since we refused, they are attacking us through social media. Therefore, we plan to take legal action.”
Additionally, on March 15, the restaurant posted a video showing a security feed of the chefs in a kitchen. However, the video has no visible timestamp.
“This is Gammaeok. It is understandable but regrettable that public opinion has deteriorated,” reads the Instagram post in part, saying that the food was delivered by Gammeeok to the couple through Uber Eats. “If a ‘rat’ came out, it could be argued as evidence saying ‘Look at this’ when they came to our store, but we didn’t see any real thing,” they said.
The manager promised the couple an Uber Eats refund and a $100 gift card “in the spirit of always treating customer complaints in keeping a low profile, but he immediately asked for $5,000,” according to a detailed caption by Gammeeok.