Sushi Dojo NYC Fires chef David Bouhadana and Reopens in East Village NYC

Sushi Dojo reopens

After a month of being closed amidst rumors and gossip, Sushi Dojo in the East Village NYC has fired Chef David Bouhadana and re-opened, and sets the record straight.

The ownership fired its executive chef David Bouhadana due to unprofessional conduct and deliberate repeated violations of New York Department of Health (DOH) codes and regulations that took place on numerous occasions during 2015.

David Bouhadana was hired by Sushi Dojo in 2013 to act and serve in the best interests of the restaurant, as well as to ensure that the establishment did not violate any of the DOH rules and regulations. Despite Bouhadana’s unsuccessful Sushi Uo debut — that lasted only few months — management felt Bouhadana still possessed skills and talent for the job at that time.

Upon opening Sushi Dojo in the summer of 2013 management launched an extensive PR campaign for the restaurant and Bouhadana himself, successfully propelling the relatively unknown but talented chef to the top of NYC’s culinary stage.

However, during the second half of 2014 and into 2015, possessed with the fame Sushi Dojo brought him, Bouhadana stopped complying with the DOH codes and regulations, mainly refusing to wear gloves during the DOH inspections of the restaurant. He ridiculed and insulted inspectors in front of the dining customers and caused the restaurant to quickly became the target of frequent inspections: he was cited 5 times for bare hands contact.

Ultimately the aggravated DOH downgraded the restaurant to a C grade and had it closed.

Even after the restaurant was closed down the “celebrity chef” made no attempt towards its reopening, putting employees at risk. Instead he started his well known “Gloves off” campaign to save his own reputation and justify his unprofessional behavior.


In his interview with Grub Street at the end of October 2015 he sounded very concerned about 17 Sushi Dojo employees losing their jobs, yet did absolutely nothing to put those people back to work. He often purported himself to be a co-owner, though he never was. He also mentioned that it cost him $6,000 in fines which is untrue: the fines were much higher and paid in full by the restaurant’s proprietor.

Bouhadana also stated that “Well, I’m going through the process of reopening now, which is another fiasco. You have to go downtown, get papers signed, register with the clerk-basically you’re have to admit you’re wrong and say you’ll comply.”

The truthful fact of the matter is that the proprietor went to fill out the papers, make the atonement for Bouhadana behavior, and pay the fines: Bouhadna himself did not assist in the process.


Management would like to publicly thank our great employees for their hard work and loyalty during this crisis. They stuck together — preparing the restaurant for re-inspection and reopening; some were required to take the Food Protection Course anew (by DOH), which they studied for and then passed. Nobody walked away, nobody looked for another job. And we are very grateful for their commitment.

The proprietor noted that “I absolutely agree with Scott Rosenberg and  Anthony Bourdain that gloves ruin the sushi experience, and I am in favor of changing the DOH rule. However, the battle must be fought through the proper channels, not in front of customers in the workplace, and not at the restaurant owner’s expense (paying fines for his chef deliberately violating DOH codes) and putting business in jeopardy. It should be fought without insulting, challenging and aggravating DOH inspectors on duty. I doubt that either Rosenberg nor Bourdain would tolerate this behavior from their Executive Chefs.”

It is for the above stated reasons that David Bouhadana was fired; he was not a victim, but rather the cause of the Sushi Dojo shutdown.

We are happy to announce that we have re-opened and look forward to providing a great sushi dining experience to our loyal customers.