Aussie radio host gushes over 'random act of kindness' at exclusive restaurant

Sami Lukis was dining at the expensive eatery when a stranger picked up her $400 bill - and she wasn't the only one.

An Australian TV and radio host says she is “still in shock” after a stranger’s “incredible random act of kindness” at one of the country’s fanciest restaurants.

Sami Lukis claims she was enjoying dinner at Nobu — a well known celebrity hotspot where a seven course meal can cost upwards of $180 — in Sydney on Monday night when she was told a mystery customer had not only covered her bill, but paid for every single table.

“An incredible random act of kindness tonight from a stranger who paid EVERY table’s bill at Nobu restaurant in Sydney (including mine). Thank you to one incredibly generous stranger. And I really hope you see this,” she tweeted after dining at the exclusive restaurant, which opened at Crown Sydney in 2020.

Sami Lukis and the inside of Nobu in Sydney
Sami Lukis said she was enjoying dinner at Nobu in Sydney with a friend when a stranger paid their $400 bill. Source: Instagram/Nobu Sydney

Nobu, dubbed the world’s most recognised Japanese restaurant on its own website, has gained global praise since internationally renown chef Nobu Matsuhisa opened its first location in New York City in 1994.

The chain now has more than 50 restaurants around the world including Sydney, Melbourne and Perth, and customers are often urged to make reservations well ahead of time.

However, its revered dishes don’t come cheap, with its signature and most popular main course — black cod in miso — costing a hefty $65.

Mystery diner pays $400 bill for just one table

In an article written for 9Honey on Tuesday, Ms Lukis said she had been invited to Nobu by a friend visiting the city for a few days. Although dinner was his shout due to a “silly bet” he lost to the radio host, Ms Lukis said the pair “got the shock of [their] lives” when their waitress broke the good news.

“I just want to let you know that your bill has been taken care of by one of the other diners here tonight,” she quoted the server as saying, pondering if it was a prank.

Thinking they had misheard, Ms Lukis and her friend called the waitress back to the table for clarification. The server once again informed them their “entire bill” had been taken care of because “someone in the restaurant wanted to do something nice for everyone here tonight”.

With their bill “easily” reaching $400, Ms Lukis and her friend’s eyes widened as they began to scan the people and tables around them.

“It was late in the night and most people had already gone but there were at least 10 tables left, and around 30 other people looking around with the same shocked looks on their faces as ours,” she wrote. “Probably also wondering what could possibly inspire someone to splurge on complete strangers in such an outlandish way.”

Yahoo News Australia understands that the kind stranger didn’t pay for every table in the restaurant, but did cover several surrounding them.

“It’s always nice to hear stories like these where someone carries out a random act of kindness,” a Crown Sydney spokesperson said.

“Nobu is one of the most recognised Japanese restaurant brands in the world and each week thousands of people visit to experience its signature flair. We’re certain the guests who were enjoying their dining experience must have been delighted by this extraordinary act of generosity.”

The mystery diner’s generous gesture has created some debate online, with some Twitter users arguing the money could have been better spent on a charity. Yahoo News Australia has contacted Nobu Sydney for comment.

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