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GOLDEN GATE Restaurant sues to recover lost money



Published: Sat, February 12, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



About 250 people who attended the wedding reception got sick.

WARREN -- Golden Gate Restaurant, shut down for a time in 2004 by the city's health board, is suing its insurance company to recover benefits for the interruption of business.

Cesta's Golden Gate Inc. and Gianoutsos Land Co. Inc., both of 2186 Parkman Road N.W., filed a complaint for declaratory judgment and breach of contract Friday in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.

They seek from Erie Insurance Co. of Erie, Pa., coverage for the interruption of business and more than $25,000 in compensatory damages. The case is assigned to Judge John Stuard, and a jury trial is sought.

The West Side restaurant reopened last September after closing in June. People had eaten at a wedding reception catered June 5 by Golden Gate at St. Demetrios Youth Center on Atlantic Street.

The food was prepared at the restaurant on Parkman Road, the lawsuit explains. Other parties also provided food for the wedding reception. The restaurant says in its lawsuit that the illness and source of outbreak is "still not known."

Order to close

The city health board ordered the restaurant closed June 11, after about 250 people who attended the reception got sick.

Around June 5 and June 11, Erie provided business insurance coverage to Golden Gate.

"The commercial policy contains a provision for payment to plaintiff for damages caused by an interruption of business that resulted from the suspension of the food service license by the City of Warren Board of Health," the suit states.

The restaurant notes that "controversy exists between the parties" as to responsibilities, coverage and duties under the insurance policies.

The problem was linked by health officials to Norwalk virus, which is caused by ingesting fecal-contaminated food or water. Health department employees have said that the virus came from ready-to-eat food, or food that doesn't require cooking, listing rolls, salad contents and ice as examples.

Employees had to complete an accredited food safety course before the business could reopen.

The restaurant also must conduct an in-house training session for all additional employees hired for catered events. That training must be conducted by the business before each catered event and supervised by the city health department.

The board also required the facility to provide a monthly schedule of catered events and names of additional employees to work those events to the department.




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