A New Zealand Asian Restaurant Has Been Slammed For Its 'Racist' Menu
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Tasty cuisine and casual racism don't exactly go together hand in hand - that's what one New Zealand restaurant discovered after being accused of after making racist jokes in its food menu.
Bamboozle, an Asian fusion restaurant based in Christchurch, displays its menu online, advertising dishes with the names 'Chirri Garrik an Prawn Dumpring' and 'Ho Lee Kok'.
According to local reports the restaurant has had the menu for over two years, but it only came to wider attention after a picture of it was posted to Twitter by a furious user this week.
"Ho lee phuk, the menu for Bamboozle restuarant in Chch is some super juvenile racist trash!" Alice Galletly commented. We see what she did there.
Ho lee phuk, the menu for Bamboozle restaurant in Chch is some super juvenile racist trash! pic.twitter.com/HcKPvUBbxW
- Alice Galletly (@alicegalletly) January 9, 2018
Other food names featured on Bamboozle's menu include 'Eja Ku Rait' and 'Tay's Velly Special Penang Style Seafood', making reference to how some native speakers of Asian languages are said to have trouble with the English letter R.
Galletly's drawing attention to the menu has led to outrage against Bamboozle online, with people attacking its 'shameful' choice of dish names over social media. Some even resorted to that very modern form of protest - leaving negative reviews of the restaurant on Google.
Lots of incredible Kiwi chefs and restaurants: let's give the racist ones a miss #ByeByeBamboozle https://t.co/rnKmIOd91N
- 2Tapu (@2TAPU) January 11, 2018
Haven't been there. Was curious as had reasonable reviews. But not interested at all now. Will never go there. shameful
- Sheila Dagg (@fredagg) January 10, 2018
Gross. How the hell could they possibly think it was appropriate?
- Grant Shimmin (@shimmo23) January 9, 2018
Others didn't see the problem with the restaurant's stereotyping, calling the menu 'hilarious' or accusing Alice of jumping the gun:
Clearly no sense of humour. I find it hilarious. Imagine everyone had a boring sense of humour like you?
- Thomas (@_TL10) January 11, 2018
I love it when people appropriate our ethnic group's right to take offence at something or not before we've had a chance to make up our own minds. Thanks Alice ...
- Philip 銘光 Siu :flag_gb: (@siuphilip) January 12, 2018
Even New Zealand's race relations commissioner has weighed in on the outcry, saying that the country's cuisine deserves better than resorting to tired racial clichés.
"We've plenty of world class restaurants in New Zealand, there's nothing world class about using racial stereotypes to sell food," Dame Susan Devoy said.
Speaking with the New Zealand Herald, the owner of Bamboozle Philip Kraal defended the menu, saying his customers enjoy the dish names as 'part of the experience'.
"Pretty much everyone [sic] of our customers enjoys the written menu as part of their overall experience," he said.
However, Mr Kraal said those running the restaurant 'appreciate the feedback' and are now 'actively considering' the situation.
To be fair, Mr Kraal's gotten into trouble before for his menus, such as when another restaurant he owned, Crumpet Club, described a chicken, brie and sweetcorn pie as: "Slightly gay, I know, but oh so tasty."
That was later pulled down from the menu after a complaint to the Human Rights Commission. Wonder if there'll be a second complaint this time around.