The extravagantly expensive Beatrice Inn — where a whiskey-soaked steak costs $ 700 — doesn’t pay its tipped workers a fair wage, according to a lawsuit.
The high-end West Village chophouse ordered bartenders and barbacks to perform duties like ironing tablecloths and cleaning votive candles, which are tasks typically assigned to workers making the full minimum wage, according to papers filed this week in Manhattan Supreme Court.
Former bartender Dmitry Gurvits’ suit seeks class-action status and names head chef and owner Angie Mar as a defendant. He alleges he routinely worked between 40 and 60 hours but was not properly paid overtime.
Gurvits said he and other tipped workers were also wrongly required to pool tips with non-tipped workers like bar managers and silverware polishers. Such tip-sharing is a violation of state labor laws, which distinguish between workers who interact with customers and those who do not.
“I don’t know how in 2018 a business like this that is selling steaks for hundreds of dollars doesn’t know what the law requires of them,” said Gurvits’ attorney, Brian Schaffer.
Steaks cost as much as $ 700 at the West Village hotspot.
(Noam Galai/Getty Images for NYCWFF)
He said he represents two other employees of the restaurant who will join the suit seeking back wages and other damages for all eligible tipped workers.
Food website Eater reported last summer that an extravagant seafood platter at the W. 12th restaurant sold for $ 485. A dry-aged burger with black truffles costs $ 105. The restaurant’s famed whiskey-soaked tomahawk ribeye cost $ 14 an ounce, with a minimum of 50 ounces.
A lawyer for the restaurant declined to comment.