A MASCOT of the Sheoak Shack at Fingal Head had disappeared as quickly as he first appeared.
On Saturday night Luigi, the Italian chef who holds the menu and greets everyone at the door, was kidnapped by a group of diners, according to the Sheoak Shack owner Andrea McKay.
In the brazen kidnapping Luigi was taken about 8pm while people were still enjoying dinner in the gallery cafe.
Ms McKay said she hoped the kidnappers would have a change of heart and return the beloved mascot as the staff were concerned for Luigi's health.
"We has some windsock ducks that were taken once but they were returned with a apology letter," Ms McKay said.
"Luigi just appeared out the front one day and not he has disappeared just as quickly.
"We would really love to get Luigi back... no questions asked. We know it was a joke but we all miss him so please bring him back."
Melissa Putra was working the night Luigi was abducted and pursued the offenders.
"A man first tried to roll Luigi away but that didn't work so he put him under his arm and jogged down the road," Ms Putra said.
"I took off in pursuit of the man."
Ms Putra said when she rounded the corner she saw five people removing Luigi's timber base to put him in a waiting car and she yelled "give back my Luigi."
"I was chasing after Luigi like he was my child," she said.
"He is our special mascot. We love him and we rub his tummy whenever we put him out."
Ms Putra said she managed to get her hand in the car trying to take him.
"I don't know what I was thinking. It was a life-sized fat Italian chef," she said.
The car drove off with Luigi in the back seat.
"All that's left of Luigi is the base with an imprint of Luigi's shoes on it," Ms Putra said.
One customer quipped that at least the kidnappers left Luigi's soul.