Reggae Artist Mavado claims he was treated like a bum and even verbally abused at a fancy Asian restaurant ... simply because he's black.
Sources close to Mavado tell TMZ ... he hit up Philippe Chow in NYC for lunch Thursday with his family, when he was curiously put in the back of the restaurant, even though it was pretty much empty.
Mavado didn't complain and the family got down to business, chowing down at Chow, when he walked over to another empty table and had someone in his family take a pic of him. He says that's when a manager said he couldn't sit at that table because they were expecting guests.
Mavado claims the manager added he was prohibited from using his phone in ANY manner.
He then claims he got the bum's rush ... all of the food came out at once. We gotta say, that's what Asian restaurants typically do, but that's his story. He says he felt like they wanted to get him out.
Things got hot as fish grease when Mavado's wife tried sending the rice back. He says the manager came over and pitched a fit. He says the rice stayed put, yet it was included in the bill.
Mavado then accused the restaurant of treating him shabbily because he's black, and the manager allegedly slammed the bill on the table and told him never to come back.
Mavado claims his manager was later contacted by the restaurant and they profusely apologized, saying they didn't know he was a famous person. Mavado says he'll never go back.
As for the restaurant, we called and a manager said, "We are talking to Mavado's people and we have no comment."