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Woman Sues Restaurant for $100,000, Claims the Staff was Rude to Her for Dining Alone on Valentine’s Day

Enzo Cafe Italiano (Credits to the Owner)A Portland woman files charges against a local Italian restaurant because she claims the staff did not allow her to dine alone and get restaurant service on Valentine’s Day.

Meal for Two

On February 14, 2015, Kathleen Hampton made a 7PM reservation for two diners at Enzo’s Caffe Italiano, which is located at the Northeast 29th Avenue. For the romantic holiday, the restaurant prepared a special five-course meal to serve to couples that day.

According to court documents, Hampton stated that her husband backed out of their date at the last minute. The couple had gone on a lunch date earlier that day. Hampton’s husband felt like he no longer had the appetite for a huge Italian meal. So Hampton decided to go by herself to their reservation at the restaurant.

Dining Alone

Hampton explained that when she arrived at the restaurant, she did not get her seat immediately, despite the fact that she had a reservation.

“I was finally seated after people coming in after me were seated. I thought that was strange but I was not getting any services,” Hampton stated in the court documents.

Hampton also complained that when she informed her waitress that she’s ready to order, the waitress instead asked her to leave and forego her table.

Restaurant’s Response

Enzo Lanzadoro, the owner of the Italian restaurant, explained that his staff’s description of what happened that night was similar to Hampton’s, but with some additional significant details.

Lanzadoro stated that when Hampton arrived alone, the staff assumed Hampton’s date was just late and on his way to the restaurant. So the staff offered Hampton a glass of wine while she waited for her table, as well as her supposed date for the night.

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Lanzadoro clarified that on days when his restaurant serves special menus, the staff typically does not seat guests until their entire party arrives. Also, the tables on that Valentine’s night were only for parties of two or more, as the restaurant needs every seat in the house for that busy night.

Special Night’s Rules

The owner and the staff claimed that Hampton did not inform them that her husband had canceled. So the staff seated her at a table and even gave her a second glass of wine.

As Hampton was about to place her orders, the waitress asked her if the other party was coming. When Hampton answered that her husband canceled, the waitress explained that the restaurant doesn’t allow lone diners for that special night. The waitress advised Hampton to sit at the bar instead.

According to the staff, Hampton was furious and wanted to leave. Hampton said that she should at least bring a meal home, but the waitress told her that takeouts were not available that night. Lanzadoro confirmed that his restaurant usually allows people to order food to go, but it was not available that night because of the special five-course menu.

The Lawsuit

Hampton said she decided to sue the restaurant for its rude service. Her lawsuit demands a public apology, as well as $100,000 in fine. According to court documents, Lanzadoro is not willing to meet Hampton’s demands, but he said he would like to apologize to Hampton personally.