Is it too soon? Mario Batali, accused of sexual harassment and removed from the company bearing his name, is exploring a new venture. In December, reports of sexual misconduct rattled the Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group, and Batali admitted that accusations “match up with ways” he behaved. At the time, he emailed an apology but lost ground when he included a "P.S." with a recipe for making cinnamon rolls.
Now, about four months later, people report that Batali is exploring his options. Reports say he is considering moving to the Amalfi Coast, aiding displaced Rwandans, or creating a new company.
A New York Times article speculates that Batali may be in a good position to return to public life:
He still has legions of fans and colleagues who admire and respect his generosity, culinary knowledge and charisma. Many still post their interpretations of his recipes on Instagram, ask him for selfies on the street or urge his return to “The Chew” on Facebook. His restaurants continue to attract customers.
Friends also say that he is truly taking time to be introspective and to learn from his mistakes. But not everyone agrees that a comeback would be appreciated. Anthony Bourdain, for example, isn't ready:
Retire and count yourself lucky, I say that without malice, or without much malice. I am not forgiving. I can’t get past it. I just cannot and that’s me, someone who really admired him and thought the world of him.
- What's your view? Is it too soon, or is the time right for a Batali return? What should he consider in making this decision? What are the potential implications for women who complained about his behavior and for the company?
- Batali mentions wanting to understand his "blind spots." What does he mean by this?