Four tourists are seriously injured in hospital after a flame show went wrong at the restaurant of the celebrity chef known as ‘Salt Bae’ in Turkey.
Footage taken by a diner at the Nusret Etiler Steakhouse in Istanbul captures the catastrophic moment a bartender pours an unidentified liquid onto the fire, at which point the whole bar explodes into flames.
At the start of the film, restaurant guests are seated at the bar just feet away from the flame show. The fire, which run along the full length of the bar, appears to be under control.
A bartender pours a flammable liquid into the ridge along the bar as part of the fire show at Nusret Etiler Steakhouse
At once, a ball of fire leaps from one side of the bar to the other, where restaurant-goers were sitting having dinner
Next however, two restaurant staff pour on a liquid which causes the whole ridge to ignite as a ball of fire leaps across the bar.
Czech Republic tourist Krisryna Tresnakova was badly burned when her dress caught fire during the show on Thursday evening.
Witnesses described how the woman and her boyfriend Viktor Hajicek, CEO of Tresnakova in a Hong Kong-based company, suddenly being engulfed in flames.
Dramatic footage captures the catastrophic aftermath in the moments after the bartender pours on the unidentified liquid
Tresnakova’s injuries were reported as serious, while Hajick also suffered minor injuries to his face and body.
Hajick told a Birgun newspaper: ‘This happened last night. We went to a hospital right after the incident.
‘I have some burns, but my girlfriend Krisryna Tresnakova is much worse than me.
‘The event is very new and I’m not in a position to give more information now. We’ve had a nightmare night and it’s still going on.’
Viktor Hajicek, CEO of Tresnakova in a Hong Kong-based company (centre), was taken to Sisli Etfal Hospital for treatment. Tresnakova has now been transferred elsewhere for surgery
Greek tourist Alexandros Severıs, who is on his honeymoon, and Ummani tourist Mohammed Khamıs Salim were also injured.
Three were initially taken to Sisli Etfal Hospital for treatment by ambulance and the fourth was taken via a vehicle owned by the restaurant.
Tresnakova has since been transferred to American Hospital in Istanbul for surgery. The condition of the other three victims is understood to be less serious.
Two members of staff from the restaurant were also injured according to local media reports. However, their injuries are not believed to be serious.
Eyewitness accounts published by local media state that at around 9.30pm local time flames lit by the bartenders quickly got out of control and jumped across the bar, before igniting on Tresnakova’s dress.
Attempts by staff to put out the blaze with water only fuelled it further.
A police investigation has been launched and the two employees responsible for the show are believed to have been questioned in relation to the incident.
MailOnline has contacted Salt Bae and the Nusret Etiler Steakhouse for comment.
Turkish celebrity chef Nusret Gokce (pictured) owns a chain of restaurants and is known as Salt Bae for his theatrical style of sprinkling salt on his steaks
The Nusret Etiler Steakhouse made headlines just last week after a visit from Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro sparked fury in his impoverished homeland after he enjoyed an expensive steak prepared by celebrity chef ‘Salt Bae’.
Maduro was lavished with the gourmet lunch in Istanbul during a two-hour stop-off as he returned from a visit to China where he was trying to raise badly needed investment for his crisis-hit nation.
Turkish celebrity chef Nusret Gokce, who owns a chain of Nusr-Et restaurants and is known as Salt Bae for his theatrical, cobra-like style of sprinkling salt on his steaks, posted videos and photos on his Instagram and Twitter pages showing Maduro and his wife, Cilia, dining.
Gokce went viral in 2017 after posting videos of himself salting meat in this way. He has over 15 million Instagram followers and his restaurants in the Middle East, New York and Miami charge several hundred dollars for some cuts of meat.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (right) has sparked fury in his impoverished homeland after dining on expensive steak at a ‘Salt Bae’ restaurant in Turkey
But it sparked anger in Venezuela where millions struggle to get enough to eat and red meat is a rare luxury.
In the videos, Maduro can be seen puffing on a cigar from a personalised box while he and first lady Cilia Flores watch owner Gokce, clad in dark aviator glasses and a bicep-busting T-shirt, rhythmically sway his hips while cutting into a juicy steak with a long knife.
At one point, Maduro tells fellow diners: ‘This is a once in a lifetime moment.’
Gokce, a worldwide restaurateur better known by his nickname Salt Bae, posted the videos on his Instagram account seen by some 16 million followers alongside photos of him serving clients like Argentine soccer legend Diego Maradona and posing as Don Corleone from the ‘Godfather’ movies.
He later deleted the images and a thank you post to Maduro.
Turkish celebrity chef Nusret Gokce, who owns a chain of restaurants and is known as Salt Bae for his theatrical style of sprinkling salt on his steaks, posted videos and photos on his Instagram and Twitter pages showing Maduro and his wife, Cilia, dining. The chef is shown preparing steak at Maduro’s table
Maduro confirmed the visit in a state broadcast later on Friday. Gokce did not respond to an email seeking comment.
Venezuela’s political opposition jumped on the meal as evidence of Maduro’s disconnect from the country’s crisis, which has caused over 2 million people to emigrate to escape widespread shortages of food and medicine.
Almost two-thirds of Venezuelans surveyed in a university study published in February said they had lost on average 11 kilograms (24 lbs) in body weight last year. Eighty-seven percent were assessed to live in poverty.
‘While Venezuelans suffer and die of hunger, Nicolas Maduro and Cilia enjoy one of the priciest restaurants in the world, all with money stolen from the Venezuelan people,’ tweeted opposition leader Julio Borges, the former head of Congress.
In one video, Maduro tells fellow diners, ‘This is a once in a lifetime moment,’ as Gokce dramatically slices steak for them by their table while swaying his hips. In another video, Maduro smokes a cigar (pictured) taken from a box with a plaque of his name
Even Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, a fierce critic of Maduro, piled on, noting that Gokce also has a restaurant in Miami, home to the largest population of Venezuelan immigrants, most of them hostile to Maduro.
‘I don’t know who this weirdo (hash)Saltbae is, but the guy he is so proud to host is not the President of Venezuela. He is actually the overweight dictator of a nation where 30% of the people eat only once a day & infants are suffering from malnutrition,’ Rubio said on Twitter.
On social media, Venezuelans shared mocked-up images showing Gokce doing his trade-mark salt sprinkle pose above a skeletal child.
Maduro (right with the chef) was lavished with the gourmet lunch in Istanbul during a two-hour stop-off as he returned from a visit to China
Maduro said he visited the restaurant for lunch during a two-hour stop in Istanbul.
‘Nusret attended to us personally. We were chatting, having a good time with him… He loves Venezuela, he told me several times,’ Maduro said.
Maduro had traveled to Beijing in hope of securing fresh funds for his cash-starved socialist government, though he returned only having signed several deals involving Venezuela’s energy sector.