(above : craftstman/entertainer at work)

Newsday’s Jennifer Sinco Kelleher on the latest nuisance suit to hit one of the world’s classiest eateries.

Attorney Andre Ferenzo, representing Colaitis’ widow, Jacqueline Colaitis, said the family sat around a hot steel grill that night when a chef flung a piece of hot shrimp at Colaitis’ son, burning his arm.

The family asked the chef to stop throwing, Ferenzo said, but another piece was lobbed at a relative. Again, they asked the chef to cut it out. However, a piece was flipped toward Colaitis, who moved out of the way, Ferenzo said.

That night, Colaitis began to feel pain in his neck, the attorney said, and later went to see a chiropractor. When the pain didn’t subside, he went to see three neurosurgeons.

Colaitis underwent neck surgery at New York University Medical Center in Manhattan in June. About a week later, he was back at NYU because of complications, Ferenzo said.

“By September and October, there was numbness in his arm and stinging in his back,” Ferenzo said, adding that his client also began experiencing memory loss.

On Nov. 21, Colaitis checked into St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn with a 105-degree fever, Ferenzo said, and the following day, he died. The cause of death was sepsis, a severe infection.

Jacqueline Colaitis, who declined to comment yesterday, is demanding $10 million, Ferenzo said, and believes that the chain of events that led to the death her husband, who was in the fur business, started because of Benihana’s shrimp.

The Munsey Park restaurant is closed for renovations. At the Westbury location yesterday, customers enjoying lunch said the lawsuit wouldn’t stop them from appreciating the chefs’ engaging cooking style.

“I think it’s the stupidest thing I’ve heard in my life,” said John White, 40, of Hicksville, of the lawsuit. “It’s reaching for straws.”

But on the other side of the table, after enthusiastically thanking a chef for the finale — flipping shrimp tails into the air and catching them in his chest pocket — Suzanne Beyer said the lawsuit has merit.

“I’m always worrying it’ll hit my kids,” said Beyer, 47, of Dix Hills. “When they do all those tricks, I’m afraid food will get flung into an eye.”