Celebrity Chef's Restaurants To Close Amid #MeToo Claims
LAS VEGAS — Mario Batali’s three Las Vegas Strip restaurants will shut down July 27, officials said Friday, as the celebrity chef faces sexual misconduct allegations from multiple women.
Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group partner Joe Bastianich sent a letter to nearly 300 workers about the closures of Carnevino Italian Steakhouse, B&B Ristorante and Otto Enoteca e Pizzeria at The Venetian and Palazzo resorts. He promised to visit the restaurants to speak to employees.
The letter said Las Vegas Sands Corp., which owns both properties, was ending the business relationship. Sands Corp. issued a statement confirming the closure.
’60 Minutes’ Airs Allegations Against Batali
The move came days after police in New York confirmed an investigation into a woman’s claim on “60 Minutes” that Batali drugged and sexually assaulted her in 2005. Batali denies assaulting the woman.
A Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group representative said the company decided to close the Las Vegas restaurants before the “60 Minutes” report aired, reported the Las Vegas Review-Journal, which is owned by the family of Sands chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson.
Previous Allegations in December
Batali stepped down in December from daily operations at his restaurant empire and cooking show “The Chew” after four women accused him of inappropriate touching over a period of 20 years.
Batali has apologized for those encounters.