Celebrity Sushi Chef Accused of Sexually Harassing Staff

En Japanese Brasserie-mosphereEN Japanese Brasserie 10th
Angela Pham/BFA/REX/Shutterstock

A celebrity sushi chef is facing allegations that he made unwanted sexual advances on a female manager and repeatedly demeaned her in Japanese.

Abe Hiroki is the head chef at EN Japanese Brasserie in the West Village in New York, a popular spot for celebrities, especially those in the fashion world. He has appeared on Martha Stewart’s magazine and her VH1 show with Snoop Dogg, titled “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party.”

On Monday, Mayumi Bardiovsky filed a complaint in New York Supreme Court alleging that Hiroki had routinely harassed her and made inappropriate sexual remarks.

On one occasion, Bardiovsky says that he touched a vegetable that he said looked like a vibrator. He also encouraged her to divorce her husband, repeatedly propositioned her to sleep at his apartment and take trips with him, and discussed masturbation at work. He also asked what color her nipples are and asked for her swimsuit photographs.

Bardiovsky began working at the restaurant as a runner in 2009, later became a waitress and is now a manager, according to the complaint. She alleges that Hiroki frequently comments on her appearance, calling her cute or pretty, but can also be demeaning. He made fun of her jaw line, for several months calling her “ago,” the Japanese word for “jaw,” according to the complaint. He has also remarked that she was gaining weight and called her “ugly” in front of vendors, she alleges.

Bardiovsky, who is Japanese, also alleges that Hiroki makes many of his offensive comments in Japanese so the English-speaking staff will not understand. She says he also touched her rear end, and hugged her while making a humping motion.

In a statement, the restaurant said it was investigating the allegations.

“As a female owned and operated restaurant with a female management team, we are aware of the allegations concerning Ms. Bardiovsky,” the statement said. “We take these allegations seriously and we have been conducting an investigation… We kindly ask that you respect all the parties involved until a conclusion has been made.”

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 6

Leave a Reply


Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. L says:

    I’ve been personal witness and heard multiple stories of the white female managers harassing their employees there too.

    • Sam says:

      Well knowing is a facet of law; you had an obligation to make it known if it was unacceptable or offensive behavior.
      A lot of bosses consider it a motivating tool. ( some). If nobody tells them it’s offensive how are they to blame. If you go along you accept it. Knowing.
      Like an upstairs person clanking on a wood floor with high heels.
      by law you have to give them written notice before filing a claim.

      • L says:

        Have complained to the manager and to the owner that it was inappropriate and then decided to work elsewhere when they did nothing about it

      • Toni says:

        Isn’t it easier to just not say anything for years thinking it will change and then all of a sudden blowup and slander them in an article and in a filing.
        Surprise them. That always works.
        Oh the slimey lawyer didn’t tell you it’s your obligation to immediately write
        and give notice of offense or work
        someplace else. And courts are back logged for years with these bogus claims. Thanks.

  2. paully says:

    The Bill Cosby Japanese Restaurant perhaps??

  3. Frank says:

    another Gossip story;
    where is a copy of her registered certified letter sent to request the abuse stop or she would quit, and file a complaint.
    Employees are given legal fair notice of
    complaints to improve or they would be terminated.

More Biz News from Variety