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Celebrity Chef Gives Up All His Restaurants, Including In Area, Amid Sex Assault Claims

Chef Mario Batali
Chef Mario Batali Photo Credit: Ken Goodman, Courtesy of Mario Batali Foundation

Celebrity chef Mario Batali, who has been facing allegations of sexual harassment for more than a year, will no longer have a stake in any of his restaurants, including his two area restaurants, his partners announced on Wednesday.

Batali, who owns the Tarry Lodge in Port Chester and in Westport, removed himself from any dealings with the group after coming under fire following accusations of sexual harassment and misconduct in December 2017.

On Wednesday, March 6, his former partners, Joe Bastianich and his sister, Tanya Bastianich Manuali, told the restaurants’ employees in a letter that “Mario is now fully divested from our businesses.”

“This week, we acquired all of his interests in our restaurants,” they wrote. “Thank you for your dedication to your craft and colleagues through a challenging year.”

The allegations came to light in a more than 3,000-word article published at the Eater website which revealed that four women accused the chef of inappropriate touching in a pattern of behavior that spans at least two decades.

Batali and his team opened Tarry Lodge in Westport in the summer of 2011 in the landmark building across from the Westport Train Station in the Saugatuck neighborhood.

Batali and his company, Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group also operated restaurants around the world.

While never admitting wrongdoing, Batali said in a statement at the time: "The behavior was wrong and there are no excuses."

The NYPD and Manhattan District Attorney’s Office decided together there was not enough evidence to charge Batali.

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