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Fresh, fried & lied to: Fond du Lac restaurant center of suspicious scam

Local News

Photo Courtesy of Arletta Allen

(WFRV) – In early July, Local 5 reported that Fond du Lac’s “A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen” would be featured on the Netflix show “Fresh, Fried & Crispy.” However, new information recently surfaced raising questions:

  • Was the small-town restaurant really on track to becoming a Netflix star?
  • Had the restaurant just fallen victim to the latest scam?
  • Was this all part of a master plan?

It all started on July 2, when “A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen” shared on its Facebook page that “traveling foodie” Dominique Bellamy stopped to eat at the restaurant and extended an invitation for the mom-and-pop shop to appear on the Netflix series “Fresh, Fried & Crispy.”

Following the announcement, WFRV Local 5 reached out to “A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen” owner, Arletta Allen, to verify the alleged invitation. Allen told us, Dominique Bellamy claimed to be the “Rideshare Foodie” who travels all over the country reviewing small-town restaurants, and this time chose to eat at her restaurant.

“I put together a sampler platter for him and he was blown away with everything, especially our fried chicken!!! So, he called up the CEO of the show and told him that we should be featured,” recalled Allen.

“Dominique Bellamy” Photo Courtesy of A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen

Allen described the moment when Bellamy was done eating saying he made a call to his alleged “colleague” Kreskin Torres, who, according to Bellamy, was affiliated with the Netflix series.

During their alleged conversation, Allen says Bellamy had informed her that Torres wanted the restaurant to appear on the show and that camera crews would be coming to film the restaurant as soon as Thursday, July 8. “They bringing in the cameras next week!!! I am so excited!!!” wrote Allen on the restaurant’s Facebook page.

However, the excitement didn’t last long. On Wednesday, July 7, WFRV Local 5 was contacted by the “Fresh, Fried & Crispy” Netflix publicist, who told us that they had no plans of featuring “A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen,” furthermore, they confirmed that the company was not affiliated with either Bellamy or Torres.

“The story is inaccurate as we do not currently have any plans to feature Fond du Lac on the show. Additionally, our host is Daym Drops and not Dominique Bellamy,” wrote the Netflix publicist.

WFRV Local 5 attempted to reach out to Bellamy again for further comment, where he not only didn’t respond but blocked all communications from us. Local 5 was able to make contact with Kreskin Torres, who according to his website and social media accounts travels across the nation visiting restaurants and giving out recommendations under the alias of the “Rideshare Foodie.”

When Local 5 asked Torres if he had any affiliation with Bellamy or Netflix, Torres said, “I have no idea who Dominique Bellamy is and I have no connection to Netflix.” Torres shared that he had traveled from Baltimore, Maryland, to Green Bay, Wisconsin, a few weeks prior to visit local restaurants, however, Torres says he didn’t get a chance to visit other cities, “I did want to visit the restaurant [“A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen”] while I was out there, but I didn’t have enough time.”

Torres added that while he didn’t personally know Bellamy, he may have unknowingly pointed Bellamy in the direction of “A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen.”

“People from all over ask me on social media for recommendations on places to eat and so I tell them where to go and I tell them they can say Kreskin Torres sent them,” shared Torres.

Starting to piece together what happened, Local 5 reached back out to Allen to see if she had since heard from Bellamy, who had reportedly stayed in contact with her after his visit.

According to the private Facebook messages between Allen and Bellamy, the story had changed. Bellamy was now alleging that one of his other “colleagues” going by the name “Mr. Jeff” supposedly serves as CEO of marketing masterpieces with Netflix and was the person who wanted the small-town restaurant to appear on the show but, due to a recent loss in his family, “Mr. Jeff” would be out of commission for a month.

Attempting to delve further into this new mystery man known as “Mr. Jeff,” WFRV Local 5 tried making contact with him using an email address provided to us by Allen, which had allegedly been given to her by Bellamy during his visit. When Local 5 reached out to “Mr. Jeff” via the email provided, we received an Office365 notice that there was no server connected to the email address.

As the realization set in that Bellamy and “Mr. Jeff” would likely never reach out for further comment, we shared with Allen all that had been uncovered during our investigation. Shortly after, “A Family Affair Soulfood Kitchen” posted the following statement on its Facebook page:

Reaching back out to Allen for a final statement, Allen said, “I don’t want people to think I was in on the scam or anything… I honestly think it was kinda cool this happened because now we are getting calls from a bunch of people like Kreskin Torres, a director in Green Bay, they all want to come down and try our food, so like if this would have never happened we would have never gotten this recognition… This is not the end, but only the beginning… Don’t be discouraged, our time will come to be highlighted on the great white screen.”

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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