Remember Salt Bae? The man who threw salt in a fun way and dominated the internet for what seemed like forever? It feels like an eternity ago, but it was 2017. Oh, the horrors we've seen since then! Anyway, now he's back in the spotlight after a photo of his new restaurant's menu began making waves for everything, from its prices to its veggie burger that's free for "ladies".
It all started when food critic Adam Platt posted a photo of the menu at Salt Bae's new NYC burger restaurant. It's called, as you may have already guessed, Salt Bae, and is an off-shoot of his steakhouse Nusr-Et. The burger joint's menu contains a ton of unhinged items and, as Eater pointed out, seems pretty designed to cause outrage. Let's just acknowledge that now. And yet here I am, outraged!!
Amid the $100 (£77.50) Gold Burger (that literally contains gold leaves) and the $22 (£17) Salt Bae burger with black bun is a veggie burger. This might seems innocuous enough, but it's a burger served on a pink bun and it doesn't have a listed price other than the phrase "IT IS FREE FOR LADIES."
People responded to Platt's tweet with outrage and confusion about pretty much everything, from the prices, to the marketing to "ladies", to the fact that any "veggie" burger that contains parmesan is arguably not vegetarian at all.
Good thing that there are no men who are vegetarians (except me and lots of others).— Stephen Hughes #FBPE (@sh061961) February 25, 2020
It’s more insulting that Veggie burgers are free for ladies...#MeatSweats— Deb P. (@trevortdogg) February 25, 2020
If that’s real Parmesan cheese in the veggie burger then it ain’t veggie!!— Fromage to Age (@fromage2age) February 25, 2020
However, Al Avci, the general manager of Nusr-Et's operations in the U.S., said that the complimentary burger is meant to be just that.
“We wanted to compliment the ladies,” he told Eater. “We weren’t thinking it would be sexist."
He also noted that "in reality, nobody is paying for the veggie burger,” and that a person of any gender would get it for free. Avci also told Eater that the promotion was embraced during the restaurant's previous Dubai opening.
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