The shocking incident was caught on video, racking up thousands of views on YouTube since it was posted Monday.
Police have not identified the woman who threw the soup, though criminal charges are reportedly pending, and restaurant management has said she is no longer welcome.
Janelle Broland Splashed with Spicy Soup
Broland said she was working at Sol de Jalisco in Temple on Sunday at around 1 p.m., when the woman in the video stopped by to pick up her order.
A short while later, Broland said in a TikTok video, the woman called the restaurant to complain.
“Basically this woman had called saying that her soup was so hot that it had melted the plastic lid into the soup,” Broland said.
“I told her that I was so sorry, that was so embarrassing because that had never happened to us before. I of course was offering her refunds and trying to get her an alternate meal or a free meal or something.”
But Broland said the woman continued to be hostile. She said she ended the phone call after the customer continued to “cuss” at her and the kitchen staff.
The woman called back, Broland said, and was placed on hold for about a minute because the restaurant was busy.
By the time Janelle Broland got back to the phone, she said, the customer had hung up.
“And then, as you saw, she had come into the restaurant,” she said in the TikTok. “She still continued to curse and scream at me.”
In the security camera footage, Broland and the customer are seen speaking briefly before the customer removes the lid from her spicy soup. Broland is seen taking out her cell phone — she was preparing to call the police, she explained in the TikTok — before the customer splashes the hot soup square into Broland’s face.
But the worst part wasn’t the heat of the soup, Broland told KCEN-TV.
“The spices from it are what hit me the most,” she said. “I remember feeling the warmth of the soup, but my eyes burned so bad. My nose was burning. It kind of took my breath away for a second because just the burning I was really in shock from it all.”
The video shows the woman who threw the soup fleeing the restaurant with her male companion shortly after.
Spicy Soup Thrower Still At Large
The disgruntled customer has not been publicly identified by police, but authorities are reportedly investigating the incident as a crime. No arrests appear to have been made yet.
Local news outlet KCEN-TV did not publish her name, but reported that her social media accounts appear to have been deleted, and added that she could not be reached for comment.
Janelle Broland said there are many customers like the woman in the video.
“I hope this brings a lot of attention to the way that not just servers in my area, but servers everywhere are treated and short staffed or not,” she told local reporters.
“We don’t just put on an apron and a name tag and we’re just robots — we are still human beings with emotions the same way. […] I would hope that they would go somewhere and treat everybody with the same kindness and respect they would treat their own family.”