Giuseppe Cipriani hasn't been seen on U.S. soil since last December, either because he suspects he may end up in handcuffs if he returns, or because he's been "exploring new business ventures" in far-off locales for the past nine months or so. But just because he isn't physically present—and has left his family's crumbling hospitality empire in the (undoubtedly) capable hands of his teenage sons—doesn't mean you're not allowed to give his (undoubtedly) overworked attorney another headache to deal with. Cipriani, his father Arrigo, and their collection of NYC-based companies, were slapped with (another) class action lawsuit this week by a former employee who claims he was stiffed on wages and never compensated for his overtime work. The suit, which is probably now sitting atop a giant tower of legal paperwork on Cipriani's lawyer's desk, is below.
♦ David Chang's Momofuku Ssäm has earned itself an upgrade. Frank Bruni gave it three stars in today's Times, saying the food there makes him feel "unencumbered, honest and joyful." [NYT]
♦ The most despised restaurant of 2008? That would be Delicatessen. [NYO]
♦ Justin Bogle is replacing Christopher Lee as executive chef at Gilt. [GS]
♦ Macao Trading Co. is planning to add a lounge and downstairs bar. [Eater]
♦ The Ciprianis are pushing for landmark status for the Rainbow Room. [NYO]
♦ Pink Elephant co-founder Shawn Kolodny is departing the club. [DBTH]
♦ If you pick up dinner at one of the outposts of Saigon Grill and it looks emptier than usual, there's a good reason for that: The owner and his wife were arrested today for falsifying records and tampering with evidence. [NYP]