Pachamama announce Chinatown restaurant by insulting Chinatown - updated

pachamama rat email

It's Restaurant Marketing #101 (not to mention common decency) not to insult the cuisine of the country whose food you're serving up, but that lesson seems to have eluded someone at Pachamama.

In an email sent out to their mailing list yesterday promoting both Chinese New Year, which in 2020 is the Year of the Rat, and their upcoming new Chinese noodle restaurant Yiu Fat Noodle, they've written (with our bolding):

In order to pay our respects to the cosmic rodent, we have lovingly prepared an array of delightful dishes - selected especially from our brand new menu for Yiu Fat Noodle, which will be opening up in China Town this year. There will be a special guest DJ behind the wheels of steel to keep the party moving along as it should and unlike many China Town restaurants, we intend to celebrate the rat, not catch it, kill it and mix it into a bowl of steaming noodles!

A Hot Dinners reader brought this to our attention, rightly flabbergasted at the insulting message. How on earth anyone signed this off is beyond us. We've reached out to Pachamama's PR team for a comment. As they mentioned, they're due to open Yiu Fat Noodle in Chinatown this year. This isn't the most auspicious start.

Update - Pachamama have now released a statement:

We pride ourselves at Pachamama Group for having a diverse and fun loving team, with our two founders being from Central Asia themselves and diversity being at the core of our business. We have many friends and neighbours in China Town and eat there regularly. We would be heartbroken to think that we offended anyone. Our newsletter tends to be fairly tongue in cheek, but looking back we can understand how this might have not come across as intended and we can only apologise deeply.


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