Mario Batali is facing at least four allegations of sexual misconduct and groping from women spanning a more than two decades. Three of the four women were Batali employees.
The news was first reported by Eater on Monday. In a statement to the website, Batali said he would step away from the day-to-day management of Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group.
“I apologize to the people I have mistreated and hurt,” he said in a statement to Eater. “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.”
“I am going to step away from day-to-day operations of my businesses. We built these restaurants so that our guests could have fun and indulge, but I took that too far in my own behavior. I won’t make that mistake again. I want any place I am associated with to feel comfortable and safe for the people who work or dine there.”
None of the accusers are named in the piece, but one woman describes how Batali got drunk at a party in New Orleans and groped her after she spilled wine on her dress.
“He just went to town, and I was so shocked,” the woman said. “Jaw on the ground, I just stepped back from him in utter disgust and walked away.”
Batali did not immediately respond to a request for comment from TheWrap
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