Small clause in new Sydney hotel's menu sparks social media outrage
A brand-new hotel, pub and eatery in Sydney’s north west has been forced to apologise after attracting the ire of thousands before it has even opened its doors.
The Marsden Brewhouse, a $45m venture by hotelier family the Laundys in Marsden Park, is scheduled to hold its grand opening next Tuesday night.
But the venue was in damage control this afternoon, issuing a public apology and promising to alter the wording on its menu after putting allergy sufferers offside.
Last Friday, The Marsden Brewhouse took to Facebook to drum up excitement over its impending opening, but the post was soon overrun with more than 4000 comments, largely from potential diners complaining about a no-alterations policy on its bistro menu.
In a disclaimer included on the menu, published on the Brewhouse’s website, it states:
“Please be advised that we do not allow alterations to our menu. Our menu contains nuts, gluten and other allergens, please take this into consideration.”
The move had allergy sufferers seeing red.
“They are here for the community except for people with allergies! People with allergies can go to hell,” one disgusted Facebook user wrote.
“It appears this place is incapable of proper food handling if you can’t cater for the need of people with food allergy. Discriminating against those who have an auto immune life threatening condition is hardly community minded. Anaphylaxis is not a life style choice it is a medical condition,” another comment read.
Nine.com.au contacted The Marsden Brewhouse, who declined to comment on the matter.
But the brewhouse later made a post on its Facebook page apologising for the confusion.
“The Marsden Brewhouse team would like to apologise for the below poorly written disclaimer on our menu which presented some ambiguity,” the post read.
“We would like to clarify that we already have 19 Vegetarian/Vegan Options and 19 Gluten Free Options on our menu and will where possible assist with other allergic requests.
“However we cannot 100% guarantee that we are totally allergen free.
“This disclaimer will be changed and we thank you all for your feedback.”
Allergy and Anaphylaxis Australia CEO Maria Said told nine.com.au she had been “aghast and disappointed” when she initially heard The Marsden Brewhouse had put a blanket ban on all food alterations.
She said she was now pleased they had listened to the feedback of their potential customers.
“It’s great that they have noted their mistake and are making a change to their disclaimer. We don’t want a guarantee but we do want to be able to eat a meal knowing our allergy has been taken seriously,” she said.
Australia was known as the allergy capital of the world and more needed to be done to support people with allergies in general, Ms Said said.
“There is a federal election coming up and Allergy and Anaphylaxis Australia and the National Allergy Strategy urges politicians to understand the needs of people with food allergy in this country.”
“We need the government to give serious consideration to the National Allergy Strategy funding plea and acknowledge the work the National Allergy Strategy has done and the work there is still to do.”
Contact reporter Emily McPherson at [email protected]
© Nine Digital Pty Ltd 2019