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Mario Batali will exit his restaurant company

The famed chef-restaurateur is being bought out of the Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group a year after sexual-harassment claims against him became public, according to a media report.
Photograph: Shutterstock

More than a year after sexual-harassment allegations against Mario Batali became public, the famed chef and restaurateur has divested himself from nearly all his restaurant operations, according to a report Wednesday in The New York Times.

The dissolution ends the 20-year partnership ofthe Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group, which once stewarded dozens of popular operations in the U.S. and internationally. Among the group’s restaurants were Babbo and Del Posto in New York City, and several outposts of the retail-restaurant mega-hybrid Eataly.

A new restaurant company, as yet unnamed, will oversee the group’s remaining 16 restaurants. Tanya Bastianich Manuali, who will be in charge of the new company’s day-to-day operations, and her brother, Joe Bastianich, bought all of Batali’s stake in the businesses. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, the newspaper reported.

Eataly is in the process of acquiring Batali’s interest in the Italian food hall concept, a company spokesman told the paper.

Batali, who New York City authorities decided in January not to criminally charge after investigating three sexual-harassment claims, “will no longer profit from the restaurants in any way, shape or form,” Bastianich Manuali told the newspaper.

Batali stepped down from restaurant operations in December 2017, while continuing to profit from them, after dozens of harassment allegations against him came to light.

He is one of several high-profile chefs and restaurant operators who’ve recently seen their empires crumble amid assault and harassment allegations. New Orleans chef-operator John Besh stepped away from his company after widespread harassment claims against him in October 2017. Late last year, Washington, D.C.-based chef and restaurateur Mike Isabella shut down his hospitality business after being accused of multiple instances of harassment at his operations.

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