Mario Batali accused of sexual misconduct

Celebrity chef Mario Batali has announced he will step down from the day-to-day operations of his businesses after multiple women accused him of sexual misconduct.

Posted: Dec 11, 2017 3:41 PM

Celebrity chef Mario Batali is stepping away from his restaurant business and ABC television show amid allegations of sexual misconduct.

Batali said in a statement to CNNMoney that he is "deeply sorry" for any pain or humiliation he has caused.

"I apologize to the people I have mistreated and hurt," Batali said. "That behavior was wrong and there are no excuses. I take full responsibility and am deeply sorry for any pain, humiliation or discomfort I have caused to my peers, employees, customers, friends and family."

That statement was first made public early Monday in an investigation on Eater, the restaurant news website. Eater's report included four accounts of women who claimed that Batali "touched them inappropriately in a pattern of behavior that appears to span at least two decades."

The women, some of whom worked for Batali, claimed he had groped them, according to Eater. The story did not name them.

Related: The media men who have been accused of sexual misconduct

Batali did not refer to the Eater investigation in his statement. But he said, "although the identities of most of the individuals mentioned in these stories have not been revealed to me, much of the behavior described does, in fact, match up with ways I have acted."

"We built these restaurants so that our guests could have fun and indulge, but I took that too far in my own behavior," he said. "I won't make that mistake again."

The Batali and Bastianich Hospitality Group, a collection of restaurants, confirmed to CNNMoney that Batali has stepped away from company operations.

He remains an owner of the group, which he founded with restaurateur Joe Bastianich. A spokesperson said that Batali and the owners are reviewing that role.

"We take these allegations very seriously," B&B said in a statement, which was first provided to Eater. "We pride ourselves on being a workplace for our employees where they can grow and deliver great service with equal opportunity and free from any discrimination.

The group added: "We have strong policies and practices in place that address sexual harassment. We train employees in these policies and we enforce them, up to and including termination."

The B&B spokesperson said the company also investigated a complaint about Batali's behavior in October. It was the only complaint B&B has ever received about Batali, the company said.

An employee at one of the group's restaurants reported "inappropriate behavior," according to the spokesperson, who would not disclose the name of the restaurant or details about the incident.

The B&B spokesperson said Batali was counseled, reprimanded and required to undergo additional sexual harassment training. After that report, he volunteered not to go to the restaurant mentioned in the complaint.

Within the past few weeks, he stepped away from his operational role entirely, said the spokesperson, who declined to say anything further about what led to that decision. The company said it was not aware of other complaints at its restaurants.

Batali has also been a host on ABC's "The Chew" for the past several years. An ABC spokesperson told CNNMoney on Monday that he is also stepping away from that production.

"We have asked Mario Batali to step away from The Chew while we review the allegations that have just recently come to our attention," the spokesperson said. "ABC takes matters like this very seriously as we are committed to a safe work environment. While we are unaware of any type of inappropriate behavior involving him and anyone affiliated with the show, we will swiftly address any alleged violations of our standards of conduct."

And Food Network, which aired Batali's show "Molto Mario" from 1996 to 2004, said it is shelving plans to bring back the program.

"Food Network takes matters like this very seriously," the network said.

Terre Haute
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 51°
Robinson
Clear
49° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 48°
Indianapolis
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 57°
Rockville
Clear
49° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 49°
Casey
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 57°
Brazil
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 51°
Marshall
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 51°
Clear, Bright Moon
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1671275

Reported Deaths: 27903
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook63319811182
DuPage1078031375
Will910281124
Lake797931082
Kane68211868
Winnebago40918559
Madison40014592
St. Clair36230595
McHenry34584326
Champaign26931196
Peoria26845368
Sangamon25682284
McLean22947217
Tazewell20601330
Rock Island18783360
Kankakee17848248
Kendall16162113
Macon15259250
LaSalle14983285
Vermilion14303199
Adams13097152
DeKalb12114133
Williamson12027174
Whiteside8265183
Jackson808394
Boone790483
Coles7857122
Ogle754587
Grundy735386
Franklin7317115
Knox7244169
Clinton7113102
Macoupin6927104
Marion6907143
Henry661677
Effingham658099
Jefferson6523143
Livingston596098
Stephenson580992
Woodford575292
Randolph553799
Christian531882
Fulton525875
Monroe5243103
Morgan505299
Logan494274
Montgomery489881
Lee478060
Bureau442190
Saline433169
Perry432375
Fayette429564
Iroquois419977
McDonough373460
Shelby345848
Jersey335153
Crawford331330
Lawrence330833
Douglas326237
Union305848
Wayne301762
White279333
Richland279057
Hancock273035
Cass265330
Clark265240
Pike263358
Clay258254
Edgar256749
Bond255625
Warren243665
Ford242859
Carroll236038
Moultrie231433
Johnson225131
Wabash217019
Jo Daviess215129
Massac214148
Mason212752
Washington211628
De Witt204930
Greene204840
Mercer203435
Piatt200914
Cumberland189526
Menard171913
Jasper161021
Marshall141221
Hamilton133622
Schuyler107010
Brown106410
Pulaski103811
Edwards103418
Stark81228
Gallatin7878
Alexander71712
Scott7136
Henderson69814
Calhoun6902
Hardin59816
Putnam5614
Pope5476
Unassigned1632433
Out of IL70

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 1000163

Reported Deaths: 16309
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1347632106
Lake660041156
Allen57441793
Hamilton46100461
St. Joseph44109607
Elkhart35696507
Vanderburgh32087477
Tippecanoe27796257
Johnson24902443
Hendricks23738354
Porter22802362
Madison18614404
Clark18424250
Vigo17347301
Monroe15180197
LaPorte15046250
Delaware14984259
Howard14626287
Kosciusko12217147
Hancock11630175
Bartholomew11505179
Warrick11255189
Floyd11013214
Wayne10897250
Grant9964218
Morgan9404176
Boone8863116
Dubois8227130
Dearborn817093
Henry8139151
Noble7984106
Marshall7838134
Cass7499119
Lawrence7403170
Shelby7138114
Jackson694088
Gibson6533113
Harrison644491
Huntington633999
Knox6273106
DeKalb626397
Montgomery6208109
Miami589797
Putnam575377
Clinton570271
Whitley560455
Steuben554675
Wabash5279101
Jasper524475
Jefferson506996
Ripley495685
Adams476073
Daviess4616113
Scott435869
Greene422096
Wells420987
Clay420260
White415962
Decatur4133101
Fayette404286
Jennings385160
Posey375343
LaGrange353978
Washington353249
Randolph341999
Spencer337342
Fountain332558
Sullivan326752
Starke313369
Owen312070
Fulton306567
Orange291762
Jay280445
Perry264752
Franklin264042
Carroll259132
Rush258832
Vermillion255454
Parke230026
Pike227943
Tipton226659
Blackford190540
Pulaski181855
Crawford158623
Newton156048
Benton150217
Brown144547
Martin137419
Switzerland134211
Warren120516
Union106815
Ohio84112
Unassigned0538