Today the website NY Eater posted a story about celebrity chef Mario Batali. According to the article, Mario stepped down after being confronted with allegations of sexual harassment.
There were four women that claim that Mario harassed them. These are their stories:
Woman #1: A female chef that met him at a wine auction in New Orleans:
[Mario had] been drinking and he became what she characterized as “creepy” — “just giving me this provocative, icky feeling.”
Minutes into their conversation, she recalls, he told her, “Come work for me, I’ll pay you double what you’re making.” Moments later, someone bumped her glass, spilling wine all over her chest and down her scooped-neck shirt. She alleges that Batali began rubbing her breasts with his bare hands while saying something like, “Let me help you with that,” as he groped her chest. “He just went to town, and I was so shocked,” the chef says. “Jaw on the ground, I just stepped back from him in utter disgust and walked away.”
Woman #2: A server at Mario's restaurant PO in the 1990s:
The former server alleges that on multiple occasions Batali grabbed her from behind “like a linebacker, like a disgusting bear hug,” and pressed her body against his. In hours of interviews with Eater, she described nearly two years of inappropriate behavior. The grabbing would often occur while they were alone in a cramped passageway between the dining room and the kitchen, she alleged. “He would breathe on me — and sometimes take a deep inhale, like he was smelling me,” she recalled.
Woman #3: A woman who worked with Mario in the 1990s:
One day, while she was in the dining room of the restaurant, she said, Batali came up behind her, catching her unaware, and “put his hand on half of my butt and he squeezed it.” She recalled later gently confronting Batali, who responded, “What are you, a lesbian?”
In a second incident that took place about three years later, she alleges that while working next to Batali in a small, boxed-in space, he was seated in such a way that he blocked her exit. When she had to get up, he refused to move — leaving her no choice but to straddle him in order to leave the space.
Woman #4: A woman who worked for Mario in 2011:
At the party, she recalled that Batali appeared drunk, and she became concerned for his safety when she spotted him on a balcony standing slumped over. “When I noticed that he looked wobbly, my instinct was concern,” she said. When she walked over and tapped him on the shoulder, “he sprung up, like he was startled,” and with his eyes wide open. Then, immediately, “he lifted his arms straight up and grabbed both of my breasts,” she said. “I took a step back and I pushed him away, and when I did that, I remember he said, ‘Oh, come on.’”