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Couple Sues, Says NYC Sushi Restaurant Canceled Wedding Party Because They're Gay

Barrett Greene and Thomas Eng are suing Amber Village sushi restaurant in NYC's Greenwich Village after they say the owner canceled their wedding catering and rehearsal dinner after finding out the couple is gay.

AmberDNA Info reports:

The troubles began shortly after the couple put down a $750 deposit in March to book a party room for their June 8 rehearsal dinner. Tommy Ho, a manager at the restaurant, agreed to have Amber Village cater the wedding the next day as well, according to court documents.

But on March 30, the restaurant's general manager, identified in the documents only as Mr. Fong, allegedly confronted Ho in a rage and said he "didn't want any 'gay parties' at Amber Village."

"Fong also told Ho that it's 'very bad' for Amber Village to book 'gay parties,' and that big groups of 'gay parties' are especially bad for feng shui," or the Asian practice of improving a building's chi, or energy, the lawsuit says.

After the exchange, Fong allegedly paid Ho his back wages and fired him, saying "you can go now," according to the lawsuit. Soon afterward, Ho texted Greene that he had been fired and that the pair could no longer have their rehearsal dinner at Amber Village, or have their wedding catered by them — leaving them scrambling to find a last-minute caterer for their 200 guests.

The suit seeks unspecified punitive damages, claiming that the restaurant discriminated against the pair based on their sexual orientation.

One employee told the paper that the reason for the cancelation seemed out of character for the restaurant:

“Feng shui has to do with luck and fortune. It has to do with where do you put your plants and flowers, your furniture. It has nothing to do with who are your clients,” Bo Lee said. He denied the company would discriminate against gays.

“This is the West Village. We don’t turn away anyone,” Lee said. “We have gay managers.”

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Comments

  1. This is what happen when people decided to embellish on things like religions and Feng Shui. What's the point of practicing something, when you already bring your own preconception of how thing should be? I know a little bit of Feng Shui, to use that as an excuse is like an Asian pretending not to speak English as an excuse to be ignorant.

    Posted by: bambinoitaliano | Sep 18, 2012 8:03:53 AM


  2. Their wedding was in June. They booked the restaurant in March and were told their booking was cancelled in March. Explain the "last minute scramble" part again?

    NYPost says the restaurant closed and moved to a new location in June and that's why it was cancelled, as the manager had said to not book any events. Amazing what you can find from hearing the other side, always noticeably absent around here.

    Posted by: MarkUs | Sep 18, 2012 8:15:59 AM


  3. Haha at the retard citing the NYPost. Good one!!! This is what you get for booking a reception at a SUSHI restaurant run by CHINESE people.

    Posted by: Dalliance | Sep 18, 2012 8:39:12 AM


  4. I don't buy this. I've eaten at Amber Village many times, with a group of friends, and we've never been made to feel unwelcome or out-of-place as gay men. The service has always been impeccable and courteous.

    I think this couple is exaggerating and I'd take their gripes with a big grain of gay salt.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Sep 18, 2012 8:51:00 AM


  5. Stop crying and go find another restaurant.

    Posted by: Andrew | Sep 18, 2012 8:59:41 AM


  6. There's a lot of homophobia in Greenwich Village. It's hidden away, so it's difficult to detect. It's a fake liberal enclave full of breeders.

    Posted by: jason | Sep 18, 2012 9:02:11 AM


  7. He said, she said situation. The couple says they were blatantly discriminated against, and the restaurant owner Fong Lin says he was ordered not to accept new business. With that said, what isn't in question is that Fong Lin did not return the deposit to the couple after canceling their agreement with the couple.

    Personally, I believe the couple. They have very little reason to lie about this.

    Posted by: Francis | Sep 18, 2012 9:06:16 AM


  8. Feng shui is just a bunch of Asian Hocus Pocus. Just mythological B.S.

    Posted by: Andrew | Sep 18, 2012 9:07:16 AM


  9. Andrew and Jason have decided to troll this story, so I'll just take what Jamal said into account.

    Posted by: Francis | Sep 18, 2012 9:16:22 AM


  10. Shouldn't the guy that got fired have a case here?

    Don't know about the homophobia in this case, it seems there are conflicting info.

    Posted by: Tanoka | Sep 18, 2012 9:35:16 AM


  11. Booking a restaurant reservation for 200 people can indeed take several months of waiting, though maybe it's easier in a metropolis.

    Also note that he was fired. That's also illegal.

    Posted by: Steve | Sep 18, 2012 9:42:14 AM


  12. Something doesn't sit right with this story.

    As a Chinese person, I've never heard Fend Shui used as a reason to be anti-gay, other than the idea of having more masculine yang than feminine yin. But even that has little if anything to do with Feng Shui, nor would having customers with "too much yang" be a concern for a business.

    It seems like the couple (Greene and Eng) were informed by a fired employee (Ho) that the reason their event was cancelled was because Fong was homophobic? But is Ho the only source of that alleged motivation? Could Ho have lied to them about why their catering order was cancelled because he was upset at being fired?

    Certainly, if Amber Village was not taking orders at the time because they were moving locations, and an employee booked a large catering order against this policy, it might be grounds for firing.

    Posted by: luminum | Sep 18, 2012 10:13:16 AM


  13. somehow...I find this rather difficult to believe this would happen is a city like NYC ... reason, even if you are a homophobe, gays can ruin your business by word of mouth, secondly, gay marriage is legal there and the state has been boasting how much money they have made since gay marriage was made legal.

    Posted by: tommyboy10 | Sep 18, 2012 10:18:36 AM


  14. Some anonymous person left this comment:

    "2946042936 minutes ago

    The story began with a stupid new manager Tommy Ho who didn't know what he was doing and trying many bad promotions and changes to hurt Amber. All the servers were against his bad decisions and he tried to fire all of the servers. Eventually he got fired, but before he got fired he took this couple's deposit for upcoming party, and it's based on the fact that they were moving to another location in about a month (the party was supposed to be hosted in about 3 months after)and he knew it. The next manager Bo came in trying to take care of his mess but Tommy Ho refused to give Bo the contact number of this couple because he wanted to revenge. He said "I am not going to give you their contact number, it's not my problem, wait for the law suit!". Later Amber contacted the bank to cancel the transaction or whatever they did, they didn't lose the deposit. And one thing for sure was they never talked to the couple and nor did they know they were gay. Couple of months later this lawsuit came up, apparently Tommy Ho called them and told them Amber didn't want to take their party because they were gay, and he got fired for taking their deposit or something like that. This Tommy Ho later called Fong, the owner's son to apologize and said he regretted doing this to give him so much trouble and wish he could take back his position. I wish Amber sue this liar's ass for hurting their name. Amber 6th Avenue's majority regular customer were gay, and they even put up rainbow flag on the day of gay parade. This is restaurant is very gay-friendly and using them as excuse to sue is just wrong."

    Posted by: Jason | Sep 18, 2012 12:40:31 PM


  15. Feng shui is bulls--t (and therefore it was featured on a show by that name). Feng shui means whatever anyone wants it to mean, as long as they get your cash. You can discover this yourself by hiring some feng shui "experts" to advise you (separately) and explain their decisions. They won't agree on much.

    Posted by: Randy | Sep 18, 2012 1:48:10 PM


  16. @Jamal49 Gay salt--can I get that in stores?

    Posted by: JFE | Sep 18, 2012 5:02:11 PM


  17. So here we are. Anytime a gay person doesn't get their way, they yell "discrimination!!", "homophobia!!"...as noted by anyone bothering to dig deeper there was an explanation.....

    the cycle of victimhood continues....

    Posted by: Marty | Sep 18, 2012 6:09:51 PM


  18. @Francis: Is a troll just someone you disagree with?

    Posted by: Andrew | Sep 19, 2012 1:36:58 AM


  19. Saddest thing for me is that bitter, bitter queers like @Marty and others are more than willing to dismiss these claims so easily. These guys have no reason to lie. None. Sure, there may be another side of the story, but we have no idea if they heard it.

    We have laws preventing this discrimination. They're doing EXACTLY what they should do in this situation. I applaud them.

    Oh...and the "amber could not have discriminated b/c it has so many gay customers" argument is just the same as the "I can't be racist, because I have a black friend" argument. ie total and utter BS.

    Posted by: X2o | Sep 19, 2012 9:36:31 AM


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