‘7th Heaven’ Actress Jessica Biel’s Restaurant Lawsuit Has Finally Reached a Conclusion–Here’s How Things Ended
The restaurant business is a tough industry to enter, even for monied celebrities. While there are definitely inspiring success stories like that of Robert De Niro with the Nobu chain, a lot of celebrities aren’t as lucky. There’s rapper Flavor Flav‘s failed attempt at starting chicken ventures with ‘Flav’s Fried Chicken’. And of course, there’s pop star Britney Spears’ ill-fated Cajun cuisine resto in Manhattan.
And now, it seems that 37-year-old actress turned entrepreneur Jessica Biel just joined this unfortunate lot.
It can be remembered that Biel and her investors faced lawsuits from nine former ‘Au Fudge’ employees in 2017. Apparently, the workers were allegedly cheated out of their meal and bathroom breaks as well as the huge sum of tips they got from hosting private events in the West Hollywood restaurant. The resulting conflicts then led to Biel closing the shop in 2018.
According to reports by Bravo, the employees were asking the business owner sums of $430,100 and $31,549 to pay for the tips and the missed breaks they incurred while working at the restaurant. What more, they also asked for punitive damages worth $1 million. In total, the lawsuit costs around $1.5 million.
Fortunately, the lawsuit has finally been resolved with Biel and the staff reportedly agreeing in a settlement. The exact details of which were not made available to the public.
Biel’s California-French cuisine restaurant got its name from the au pairs who work in the dining place’s playroom watching over diners’ children. The actress started the business with partners Jonathan Rollo, Joey Gonzalez, Kimberly Muller and Estee Stanley. Aside from their unique concept of catering to both the kids and ‘kids-at-heart’, the restaurant’s other main selling point is its celebrity tie-in.
But great their concept might be, the restaurant faced problems from the get-go and it’s not just because of the eventual complaints that their employees expressed. In an interview with Jimmy Kimmel back in 2017, Biel admitted that the business wasn’t doing well financially and that they weren’t actually making money. She followed this up though by saying that nobody’s making money in the restaurant business at all as per her own experiences.
While the restaurant may have closed its doors, it seems like the Au Fudge brand is still active with its official Instagram account still posting announcements the last of which went up in early 2019. Biel has also said that the closing marks a new beginning for Au Fudge.
Fortunately, Biel’s husband, musician and actor Justin Timberlake, has more luck in the food business. He reportedly has remaining interests in a New York City barbecue restaurant called ‘Southern Hospitality’. Timberlake opened the place back in the early 2000s and is still open to this day. Meanwhile, Biel also has her and Timberlake’s son Silas Randall to keep her busy.
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