‘Stop Eating Dogs’: Michelin-Starred Restaurant in NYC Targeted by Racist Graffiti

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A Michelin-starred restaurant serving Korean-inspired noodles has become the latest target of racism amid the COVID-19 crisis in New York City.

Jeju Noodle Bar, located at 679 Greenwich St., found a racist graffiti on its winter vestibule on April 10, demanding it to “Stop eating dogs.”

Image via Douglas Kim / Jeju Noodle Bar

The West Village establishment has been closed since March 16, when Mayor Bill de Blasio banned dining-in at bars, cafes and restaurants.

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Chef and owner Douglas Kim learned about the incident after hearing from a customer, who shared a photo of the graffiti in a private message on Instagram.

 

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“Cooking is science. Taste is memory. Flavor is from your heart.” – @chefdouglaskim Photo by @wonwoolee_studio

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“I’m so sorry to have to relay this message and even more sorry that someone was horrible enough to do that,” said the customer, who also offered to clean it up herself.

Shortly after, Kim took to Jeju Noodle Bar’s own Instagram page to share the incident, describing it as a “hate crime.”

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“Stop [the] hate crimes! This was on our winter vestibule and one of [our] customers reported [it] to us,” Kim noted. “Wake up and grow up! This is [a] very tough time for everyone and we do not have time for this kind [of] uneducated action.”

Kim cleaned the vestibule himself the following day. He declined to report the incident to police, however, as he was unconvinced of their chances of finding the culprit.

Hate crimes against Asian Americans have been on the rise since the coronavirus pandemic reached the U.S. So far, there are approximately 100 cases reported per day.

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In New York City, at least 23 cases have been recorded since the beginning of April. NextShark reported previous incidents here, here and here.

Jeju Noodle Bar prides itself as the first and only noodle restaurant to receive a Michelin star in the country. A fundraiser has been set up to help it get through the pandemic, which has severely impacted the restaurant industry — particularly Asian-owned businesses.

Kim found support from users condemning the racist message he had received.

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“So sorry to hear. You know, I expect anti-Asian violence against businesses and people in other parts of the country. But to have this happen in my beloved NYC breaks my heart,” one user commented.

Feature Images via Douglas Kim / Jeju Noodle Bar

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