Auckland restaurant owner hospitalised after altercation with customer wanting refund

An Auckland restaurant owner is in hospital with serious injuries after an altercation with one of his customers on Thursday night.

The aggravated assault is believed to be over the customer wanting a small amount of cash back for the food he ordered.

It's normally open seven days a week, but on Friday, the Satay Noodle House was closed indefinitely.

On Thursday night, the block of shops were cordoned off after police were called to the restaurant following a fight between a diner and the restaurant owner.

"He's a very nice guy, and very humble, he doesn't fight with anybody, and he's very good," says nearby shopkeeper Monica Kukreja.

It's understood a male customer demanded his money back and grabbed a handful of cash from the till before walking out to his parked car.

"The restaurant guy, he followed him to the road. I told him stop, don't follow him. He just kept following him," says witness Jay Azizi.

The married father of two young children was punched and fell to the ground and is suffering serious injuries.

Friends who visited the restaurant owner in hospital on Thursday night say he has severe pain to the back of his head and his shoulder and police say he's now in a stable condition

"After fracturing this, this, he'll not be able to work for three months," says Kukreja.

The incident has shaken nearby shopkeeper Monica Kukreja who was robbed at knifepoint in 2012.

"If somebody's aggressive, you cool down. If you are cool, aggressive is fine, you have to, because we cannot fight for a mere $27 you know."

Police are examining CCTV footage of the aggravated assault and pursuing leads to identify the attacker.