Atlanta couple feels Buckhead sushi restaurant discriminated against them

An Atlanta couple told FOX 5 they feel discriminated against for being escorted out of a restaurant for a dress-code violation.

It wasn’t the dress code that upset the couple, who was asked to leave Umi Sushi before being seated. They said they didn’t realize sneakers weren’t allowed and were willing to respect that rule. The Colberts said the frustration and confusion set in when they were being escorted out and spotted what appeared to be another customer—in gym shoes— being served at the bar.

What was supposed to be a quiet birthday dinner turned into a frustrating exchange when Kaylan Colbert and her husband were denied service at Umi Sushi in Buckhead.

“I had been there multiple times. The COVID situation we had probably been about four times and spent plenty of money there in the past so this is supposed to be like a high-end restaurant,” she said.

Colbert said her husband has worn gym shoes to Umi without incident before. This time, they arrived early for their ‪5:15 p.m. reservation last Friday, but the two were told to leave and never seated.


“As we were walking out though my husband noticed a woman at the bar had on tennis shoes and that’s when everything had gone out the window at that point because there are no rules here for some people, only for others,” she said.

Colbert’s camera was rolling as her husband asked the manager why a woman at the bar was served even though she, too, had on gym shoes.

“If you’re going to have rules they should apply to everyone and not just some people,” she said.

FOX 5’s Alex Whittler I spoke to the owner over the phone who maintains the dress code is posted inside the restaurant and on the website. It applies to the entire establishment including the bar. But he said he regrets the way the situation was handled.

“This was completely, 100%, an operational mistake on our end,” Umi Sushi owner Farshid Arshid said.

“When they got upset we should have investigated that,” he said.

“We’ve seen this on the news over and over lately. Nobody wants to feel that way. Nobody wants to feel like they can’t go to certain places,” Colbert said.

The owner agrees and said things will be handled differently in the future.

Arshid said he has contacted the couple to work things out. They would not guarantee they’ll return to the restaurant.

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