Comments

1
I know this is a developing story and all blowed up on Tweeter, but I would like more journalisticky beef on my sandwich; interviews with the plaintiffs, employees not involved in the suit, responses by the ownership, reaction by sad-faced customers, and another huge picture of Kshama Sawant. Looking forward!
2
@1 - if their lawyer isn't talking, said lawyer definitely told everyone involved not to talk.



Also it's been like, five hours? Calm down.
3
I blame the Mayor and the right wingers on City Council for inaction on this
4
@2: I'm calm [Though being No. 1 for once is a major thrill].

Exactly. It's been five hours. Tilting against the current media model is a pointless, possibly. I'd like to see a little more beef before doing the outrage dance.

Shoutout to Beats Mode, but really, does a quick reaction Tweet play a meaningful role in this story?
5
News flash to guilty white Seattle liberals: ethnic restaurants treat their staff like shit.
6
"tip-sharing agreement that netted them an hourly pay rate "far in excess of the minimum wage,"



Maybe this should be forwarded to the IRS so they can pay their taxes like the rest of us.
7
Among the small minority that wasn't all that impressed by Paseo's offerings, I won't miss it, but I will feel sad and angry if the former employee allegations turn out to be true.



Wage theft IS theft, and it's shameful that a segment of the restaurant industry feels it must engage in this criminal practice in order to make money.
8
@6 has a 10% IRS reward coming if they do this - help get rid of the Fed budget deficit- turn in a wage stealing millionaire for freedom!
9
Wage theft is a $50 billion crime — annually.



http://www.workingwa.org/blog/2014/11/11…
10
You know that special ingrediant that put their food over the top? It's called exploitation! Yummy!!!
11
Fired for cause, followed by "it's a right to work state" mmmkay..
12
I've known Paseo's owner, Lorenzo Lorenzo, (yes, that's his name.) for over fifty years...though we have not been in touch for the last few years. I know him to be a good person. We should be careful to let this unfold further before making judgments.
13
I don't understand how the pieces fit together.



So they're being sued, and it looks like the case won't be finished up until next fall sometime.

So why did they suddenly just close up shop without warning? It doesn't seem like the court case is sufficient cause. They might very well win their case, so why not stay open? For that matter, even if they lose, why not stay open? they can appeal, etc...it might be a long time before they feel the financial pain, even in the worst case scenario.



Is there something I'm missing? I feel like there must be more to the story.
14
yo, Hz:



II. Facts -> 2.1: "Plaintiffs are Hispanic-Mexicans . . . "



Just fyi.
15
How can it be racism when the owners are Latino? And hipsters, isn't the whole point of ethnic food is that it's cheap? Do you think all those Vietnamese, Thai, Chinese places play decent wages? You people are such fucking morons.
16
Quite possible that the IRS or some other intrusive government agency such as Homeland Security is already all over this cash-only business. Too easy to get slippery with the money when there's no paper trail. They are about to get busted, They will have some splainin' to do.
17
@8 it's Form 211. On irs.gov website
18
@13, that's what I've been wondering. @16 may have the answer.

Dear Paseo employees--you know how to make all the food. You won't have any trouble finding backers. You can do this, and not work for assholes any more.
19
@18 I hear Thunderbird in Ballard wants to hire them
20
You don't close your business over a meritless suit.
21
Thunderbird is looking for a Chef ? I can make sandwiches, damnit.
23
Why does Anzel Hertz never mention how much theft happens by employees, or that small businesses with fewer anti-theft procedures experience more employee theft than large businesses that can afford security depts? Some employers steal from the employees because they suck, but many small businesses do not and are good people. Equally some employees steal because they also suck, to the tune of $40-$50 billion a year, it goes both ways, and mostly depends on the ethics of the person more than the position they are in.
24
what @13 said. the suit isn't settled, they only owe their lawyers right now. chickens.
25
We finally get a balanced story from Ansel. Which can only mean that this time he's sympathetic with the owners. Any of the restaurants that opposed the $15 minimum wage would have already been hung out to dry with a "Guilty!Guilty! Guilty!" headline.
26
@18 My thoughts too. Hope some of the former employees get together and start their own Paseo. They know the recipes and they know how popular it could be.
27
If only there was no minimum wage, the market would get rid of such racial discrimination!

^-this is what Libertarian(s) on SLOG actually believe
28
I hate slavery as much as the next bleeding heart but on the other hand fuck those were great sandwiches
29
Don't assume the employees know the recipe.

Part of the deal with Paseo was that the owners & family brought the sofrito and other secret ingredients overnight, cooked in a private location -- according to friends of mine who have dined at Paseo since the Wallingford days.
30
They could have closed down knowing that they probably wouldn't make enough profit to pay an eventual judgment (or damages if the case got settled before trial) and they wanted to look "poor" so they could file bankruptcy. Bankruptcy stops all creditors in their tracks, including (I think) court judgments.
31
12 hour shifts with no lunch breaks. sounds like basically every kitchen job I ever worked.
32
I am desperately seeking Paseo cook for the Thunderbird in Ballard. We are not "commies" we are locals trying to keep it in Ballard. Go talk to Ian Smith.
33
Commies, Homeland Security, secret raids, mysterious shutdown; Tavern desperately seeking cook with secret sandwich recipes; secret ingredients cooked in private locations brought to restaurant in death of night. Is Keck turning Slog into the Onion2?



Folks, the addictive secret ingredients are lots & lots & lots of sugar, salt and grease.



Or maybe weed.
34
DEAD of night, DEATH to autocorrect!
35
How come nobody reported this? Seriously, that place was a massive hipster circle jerk. You wouldn't dare talk bad about the place for fear of being shunned from your inner group of friends.
36
@5: "News flash to guilty white Seattle liberals: ethnic restaurants treat their staff like shit."

Also non-"ethnic" restaurants, you racist pile of quasi-human feces.
37
@32: "We are not "commies" "

Wage theft is as capitalist as it comes, so that's really not a step up from their former employer...
38
@15: "How can it be racism when the owners are Latino?"

You apparently haven't lived anywhere with a plurality of ethnicities. Clustered in Miami, many (probably more tied to their Eurocentric versus Afro-Cuban side of the island) Cubans think very little of Mexicans, African-Americans and Hatians. That was the case when I lived there, I'm sure there's some residual loathing still going on.
39
But I thought only white people can be racist? That’s what I learned at Seattle Public School!



“Wage theft is as capitalist as it comes”



Yes, because communists simply don’t pay you. There’s a reason people swim to Florida to escape from Cuba and not the other way around.



@36 You obviously haven’t spent much time in kitchens of Asia restaurants. Sorry, but ethnic restaurants pay poorly and treat their immigrant staff like shit. This is well known within the industry.
40
A cash-only place that's always busy is a great way to launder money. Since the lawsuit was filed two months ago, it could be that the discovery process has started, which prompted the shutdown. Destroy all the evidence before it can be subpoenaed.
41
I just have my suspicions that this is much more about tax fraud than it is about not paying a few employees at time and half in overtime pay. Does the fact that the employees were complicit in receiving a part of their salary under the table, make them guilty of tax fraud as well? Just on a much more minor level. This whole thing is one huge mess. I think we just need to wait and see what comes from all of this. Histrionics over this are nothing but histrionics, but don't let me stop you.
42
The mere filing of a lawsuit typically would not result in a closure of a successful business. There are too many possibilities that will need to be sorted out before making assumptions, like the purpose of the cash only policy was to evade taxes or commit some other misdeed.
43
I've seen many businesses go under or be forced to sell because of lawsuits. Most attornies dont work for free. And if running a restaurant was as easy as cooking the food, everyone would do it. RUNNING a restaurant is one of the hardest jobs out there.
44
Having lived within walking distance of the Fremont shop, I can say that it's pretty obvious that a lot of money was being passed under the table. At the volume they were doing, there's no reason to NOT accept cards except to remove a paper trail.



I think Lorenzo was used to the under the table way of doing things. From what I heard his staff was well compensated. (Some of the longest running staff I've ever seen.) It's possible he had struck a handshake deal with these plaintiffs that all were happy with. Someone at the Seattle Times story commented that Lorenzo installed security cameras and discovered the kitchen staff was taking liberties. I bet when he fired them, they got pissed and decided to shine some light on the sausage making in the backroom. Not a bold move as I imagine Lorenzo and his wife have their own backdoor back to Cuba.



In this case, everyone loses. These four employees will not see much of their damages beyond liquidation of assets. (The cash is offshore by now.) Current staff are SOL. And the best sandwiches Seattle has ever seen are now extinct.



The real fun is the comments sections of all these articles. They couldn't be MORE #Seattle. Old fart Eastsiders poo-pooing the hipsters with their long-line waiting and disposable income. And the bumpersticker socialists wagging their fingers over labor law based on ONE court document. (Anyone involved with law knows these things are inflammatory on purpose. To embarrass the defendant into settling.)



Fremont is dead. I am fully expecting Lighthouse Roasters to fold any day now when Ed announces his sudden retirement. Farewell Old Fremont. It started with Suzy Burke whoring her family legacy out and is ending with the tech boom. Final nail.



I feel lucky to have been able to have a beer at the original Red Door (or Buckaroo), breakfast at Longshoremans's Daughter, pick up some records at Sonic Boom or get a few weird magazines at Bulldog News and see Lorenzo delivering produce at Paseo in the morning in his Havana cab. Fremont used to be a community. Everything you needed was between the bridge and the Shell gas station on 45th. Now it's just a big techie food court by day, bro bar promenade by night. Enjoy the Coldstone Creameries, copycat BBQ joints and oyster bars, Seattle. You deserve them.



RIP Paseo. You may have just been a shady sandwich shop, but you were a delicious shady sandwich shop.
45
Hey "Ansel," why did you put the owner's name in quotes?

It's his legal name, apparently.
46
Defending a wage-and-hour/discrimination case is not that big a deal (defense costs are often in the $50k to $75k range depending on the complexity). You hire lawyers ("attornies" as Hermie would misspell it) and it is a cost of doing business. Such a cost doesn't explain closing a thriving business. There is more to the story that will need to be understood before making any assumptions or conclusions (including hurtful ones directed at the proprietors). If the closure is indeed permanent, we have lost a fun and good eatery. Period.
47
I hope this slog post isn't too critical of a potential advertiser. Mr Keck won't be pleased.
48
I'm thinking the employees won't be seeing any relief. According to Kitsareport.com, "While many Seattlites may be mourning the loss of their favorite sandwich shop Paseos, the US Justice Department is celebrating a major win in the fight against communism.





For over ten years Paseos turned out over 1000 sandwiches a day at their Fremont location. The thriving cash-only business with a cult-like following was secretly owned and operated by Raul Castro, Cuban President Fidel Castro’s blood brother and right hand man.





Homeland Security agents, in conjunction with the IRS, showed up Wednesday morning with a search warrant. The documents charge Castro with money laundering, wire fraud, and Unamerican activities."




49
The Kitsap Report

While many Seattlites may be mourning the loss of their favorite sandwich shop Paseos, the US Justice Department is celebrating a major win in the fight against communism.

For over ten years Paseos turned out over 1000 sandwiches a day at their Fremont location. The thriving cash-only business with a cult-like following was secretly owned and operated by Raul Castro, Cuban President Fidel Castro’s blood brother and right hand man.

Homeland Security agents, in conjunction with the IRS, showed up Wednesday morning with a search warrant. The documents charge Castro with money laundering, wire fraud, and Unamerican activities.
50
You realize the Kitsap Report is satire, right? Terrible satire. But it's intended as a joke.
51
@16: Paper trails can be made or avoided with or without cash. They're not mutually exclusive. I don't think we should look down on people simply because they prefer to do business without giving a cut to the assholes at Visa, Mastercard, and the big banks.
52
@12 You must be from Yakima. I knew Lorenzo there in the '70s.
53
@52 Yes, Lorenzo and my brother were running buddies in Yukima. I knew Lorenzo as well. I don't know what happened, but I am certainly saddened by this.
54
I thought Lorenzo was from Miami.
55
The Kitsap Report is owned by the Moonies. Any updates on hirings at the Thunderbird?
56
Great article. Thanks for the info, you made it easy to understand. BTW, if anyone needs to fill out IRS form 211, I found a blank form here http://goo.gl/HjLAKf.

Please wait...

and remember to be decent to everyone
all of the time.

Comments are closed.

Commenting on this item is available only to members of the site. You can sign in here or create an account here.


Add a comment
Preview

By posting this comment, you are agreeing to our Terms of Use.