food politics

D.C. Restaurant’s Yelp Page Under Attack After Ted Cruz Is Chased Out By Protesters

After a brief lull, the hot summertime trend of protesting politicians over dinner is back in full force. Last night, a group of protesters tracked down Senator Ted Cruz and his wife at an Italian spot in D.C. and confronted him over Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court until the senator was forced to leave.

The restaurant in question has been identified as Fiola, an exceedingly pricey restaurant, which Washington Post restaurant critic Tom Sietsema has called “the most glamorous place in the city to twirl pasta.” But conservatives and supporters of Senator Cruz don’t feel the same way apparently, taking to Fiola’s Yelp page to voice their displeasure with a string of one-star reviews.

“They allow paying customers to be abused and harassed by people coming in off the streets,” reads one review from Paul S. of St. Louis, Missouri, while Michael B. of Peoria, Arizona, wrote that “conservatives are not welcome and will not be protected here. The staff will allow randoms inside to yell at you while you try to eat your meal. It’s very sad.”

Since last night, nearly 25 negative reviews (and one negative review with five stars from someone who maybe doesn’t know how Yelp works) have appeared on Fiola’s page. When reached for comment, owners Fabio and Maria Trabocchi sent the following statement to Grub:

Last night, a group of protesters unexpectedly entered Fiola with the purpose of confronting Senator Cruz. Recognizing that there was a potential for escalation and concerned for the safety of all our customers, our management did what they could do to diffuse a difficult situation and, as is our policy, if there is ever an event of this nature, the police were immediately called.  We are trained at hospitality not public safety, and our highest priority is always the well-being of our customers. Separated from the protesters, the Senator exited the restaurant and the protesters left soon thereafter.

That said, with so many of the reviews coming from outside the D.C. area, it’s likely they’ll weather this particular storm.

D.C. Restaurant Gets Bad Yelp Reviews Over Ted Cruz Incident