Outrage over restaurant's controversial $5 'hipster allergies' surcharge


A restaurant has caused a stir after including a “hipster allergies” surcharge on its menu.

Indian restaurant Satya Chai Lounge in Auckland faced the wrath of Reddit users after an image of its menu was shared to the online forum.

On the menu the establishment indicates patrons will be charged an additional $5 to accomodate their dietary requirements.

"Please let us know if you have any allergies or dietary needs, we will do our best to look after you, but we cannot guarantee traces of allergens will not be there,” the menu reads.

A picture of the menu quickly drew criticism online. Source: Reddit

"$5 surcharge for Hipster allergies. V = Can be made Vegan. GF = can be made Gluten Free."

The image quickly drew criticism after it was shared over the weekend, with the policy being branded “downright stupid”.

“So someone with coeliac's disease had to pay more because these ignorant twats think it's a ‘hipster allergy’?” one person asked.

“If some asshole in a restaurant thinks that their medical condition is fashion then I hope they suffer similarly,” another person wrote, noting they had an employee who was off work for days due to their dietary illness.

The restaurant says they take allergies seriously. Source: Instagram/ aucklanddates

“Calling both of those things "hipster allergies" is just downright stupid,” one person said.

Several others gave their stories of how allergies have caused them sickness.

While most noted the menu was inappropriate, some said they could see where the restaurant was coming from.

“I don't think anyone with legit allergies should be charged or made to feel stink, but after having seen some over the top hipster-esque demands in hospo, I can see why they thought this was a funny way to pre-emptively nip it in the bud,” one user wrote.

But the owner of Satya Chai Lounge has since responded to the criticism, telling the New Zealand Herald his restaurant takes “serious” requirements seriously and that the hipster reference was merely a joke.

Samrudh Akuthota said the surcharge was merely a joke. Source: Instagram/ Satya Chai Lounge

“We will bend over backwards to look after people who have serious dietary requirements. We’ve cleaned the whole kitchen up and make sure they get looked after and don't die,” Samrudh Akuthota said.

He said, however, a small minority, who he dubs as hipsters, “take the piss”.

"The frustrating thing is we have people say 'we're coeliac, wheat will kill me' but we offer them a gluten-free beer option and they say 'no, beer doesn't count',” he said.

Mr Akuthota said he believes society is becoming “too PC” and he simply wanted customers to come to his restaurant and have a good time while having a few laughs at the menu.

In August a Sydney burger restaurant was slammed for making light of peanut allergies.

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