Mario Batali

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Mario Batali
Mario Batali in 2005
Mario Francesco Batali

(1960-09-19) September 19, 1960 (age 63)
EducationRutgers University
Le Cordon Bleu
SpouseSusi Cahn
Culinary career
Cooking styleItalian
Current restaurant(s)
  • Italian Wine Merchant (shop)
Previous restaurant(s)
  • The Spotted Pig (investor)
    Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca
    Lupa Osteria Romana
    Otto Enoteca Pizzeria
    Casa Mono
    Bar Jamon
    Del Posto
    Enoteca San Marco (renamed Otto)
    B&B Ristorant
    Carnevino, (last three located in Las Vegas; all others are located in New York City)
    Tarry Lodge
Television show(s)

Mario Francesco Batali (born September 19, 1960) is an American chef, writer, and former restaurateur. Batali co-owned restaurants in New York City; Las Vegas; Los Angeles; Newport Beach, California; Boston; Singapore; Westport, Connecticut; and New Haven, Connecticut.[1][2][3][4][5] Batali has appeared on the Food Network, on shows such as Molto Mario and Iron Chef America, on which he was one of the featured "Iron Chefs". In 2017, the restaurant review site Eater revealed multiple accusations of sexual misconduct against Batali and, in March 2019, he sold all his restaurant holdings.[6]

Early life[edit]

Batali was born in Seattle on September 19, 1960, to Marilyn (LaFramboise) and Armandino Batali, who founded Seattle's Salumi restaurant in 2006.[1][7][8] His father is of Italian descent and his mother is of part French-Canadian ancestry.[9] Batali attended Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, while working as a cook at the pub/restaurant Stuff Yer Face.[10]

In 1994, he married Susi Cahn and together they have two sons.[11][12] Batali is the son-in-law of Miles and Lillian Cahn, founders of Coach Inc.[13] Batali's brother Dana Batali was Director of Pixar RenderMan development from 2001 to 2015.[14][15]


At 29, Batali was a sous chef at the Four Seasons Biltmore in Santa Barbara after previously working as a sous chef for the then Four Seasons Clift Hotel San Francisco[16] (since 1995, known as "The Clift", under changed ownership).[17] Early in his career, Batali worked with chef Jeremiah Tower at his San Francisco restaurant Stars.[18] Stars was open from 1984 until 1999 and is considered one of the birthplaces of the institution of the celebrity chef. Batali appeared in the Food Network show Molto Mario[19] which aired from 1996 to 2004. The show made Batali a household name and popularized the Food Network.

In 1998, Batali, Joe Bastianich, and Lidia Bastianich formed the B&B Hospitality Group,[20] also known as Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group. The flagship restaurant for B&B is Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca in New York City which has a Michelin star.[21]

Batali was a co-host of the ABC daytime talk show The Chew from its premiere in 2011 until 2017.[22]

In 2012, a lawsuit was settled by Batali (and B&B) with 117 members of the restaurant staff,[23] who alleged that the Batali organization had skimmed a percentage of the tip pools in his restaurants over a period of years.[24]

Philanthropy and social activism[edit]

Batali is a critic of hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking, a method of natural gas extraction. He has signed onto the cause of Chefs for the Marcellus, whose mission is to "protect [New York's] regional foodshed from the dangers of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas (fracking)."[25][26] In May 2013, Batali co-wrote an opinion article with chef Bill Telepan for the New York Daily News, in which the two wrote that "Fracking ... could do serious damage to [New York's] agricultural industry and hurt businesses, like ours, that rely on safe, healthy, locally sourced foods."[27] Batali was the subject of a 2007 book titled Heat by Bill Buford which detailed his philosophy to various aspects of social activism, as well as cooking and life.

Batali served as an ambassador and on the board of directors for The Lunchbox Fund, a non-profit organization which provides a daily meal to students of township schools in Soweto, South Africa. In December 2017, Batali stepped down from his role with the organization in response to sexual misconduct allegations against him.[28]

In 2008, Batali and his wife Susi Cahn founded the Mario Batali Foundation, funding various children's educational programs and pediatric disease research.[28]

He supports the practice of Transcendental Meditation through the David Lynch Foundation.[29][30]

Cooking philosophy[edit]

In a 2012 interview, Batali said that good Italian cooking was characterized by simplicity, an insight he attributed to his time working at a restaurant in Borgo Capanne, Italy.[31]

Sexual misconduct allegations[edit]

On December 11, 2017, restaurant news website Eater reported that four women accused Batali of sexual harassment and sexual assault.[32][22][33] By the following day, four more women had come forward.[34] Batali took a leave of absence from his position at the management company Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group.[28][35] Producers of ABC's The Chew fired him on December 14, 2017.[36] Food Network halted plans to release episodes of his television show Molto Mario after the allegations.[37] Target announced that it was no longer selling Batali's pasta sauces and cookbooks.[38][39]

In May 2018, more accusations of sexual assault against Batali were aired on an episode of 60 Minutes, and the New York Police Department confirmed it was investigating Batali for his past behavior, including an alleged assault that took place at The Spotted Pig, a restaurant where Batali was an investor.[40] Batali denied an allegation of sexual assault, but said "My past behavior has been deeply inappropriate and I am sincerely remorseful for my actions."[40] Days later, Batali's company B&B Hospitality Group announced it would be closing its three Las Vegas Strip restaurants after the Las Vegas Sands Corp. terminated the companies' relationship.[41]

In January 2019, New York City police declined to charge Batali over two alleged sexual assaults in his New York City restaurants due to insufficient evidence.[42]

In March 2019, Batali surrendered ownership of his stakes in Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group, a partnership between Batali and the Bastianich family, including Joe and Lidia Bastianich.[43] He also sold his minority ownership in Eataly, an Italian food marketplace.[43] The Bastianiches said B&B Hospitality Group's name will change.[44] Batali was the first chef to surrender ownerships in all his restaurants after reports of sexual misconduct.[43]

In July 2021, Batali, Bastianich, and their former restaurant company agreed to a settlement in the New York state case that was under investigation by the Attorney General of New York wherein they would pay $600,000 to more than 20 former employees (men and women) of three restaurants in Manhattan.[45][46]

Trial and acquittal[edit]

In May 2019, Batali was charged with indecent assault and battery in Boston.[47] In court, the accuser alleged that Batali had groped her in April 2017 at a bar in Boston. Batali pleaded not guilty and chose a bench trial.[46][48][49][50]

On May 10, 2022, Batali was acquitted in Boston Municipal Court by a judge who ruled that Batali's conduct during the alleged incident was "not befitting of a public person of his stature" but agreed with the defense's arguments that his accuser had credibility issues and was motivated by financial gain to make her accusation.[46][51][52]

Television and movie credits[edit]

Show name Year Network Role Notes & citation
Molto Mario 1996–2004 Food Network Host A culinary tour of Italy, hosted by Batali[53]
Mediterranean Mario 1998 A culinary tour of Morocco, Spain, France, Greece, hosted by Batali
Mario Eats Italy 2001–2002 A culinary tour of the Italian countryside[54]
Ciao America with Chef Mario Batali 2003 A culinary tour of the Italian in America; only three episodes[55]
Iron Chef America: Battle of the Masters
Iron Chef America: The Series Judge or participant
ICA: All-Star Special
Mario, Full Boil 2007 Food Network A one-hour documentary special, following Batali and Bastianich opening an Italian restaurant in New York City (Del Posto)[56][57]
Emeril Live 2006 Guest appearance "Italian Favorites with Mario Batali"
Chefography 2006, 2007 Guest appearances Season 0, episode 7 and season 2, episode 6
Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations 2005 Travel Channel Guest appearance Season 1, episode 3: "New Jersey"[58]
Spain... on the Road Again 2008 PBS Co-host
Fantastic Mr. Fox 2009 20th Century Fox Rabbit Stop-motion animated film directed by Wes Anderson, based on the book by Roald Dahl
The Daily Show 2010, 2011, 2012 Comedy Central Guest appearances
Faces of America 2010 PBS Guest appearance [59]
Bitter Feast Dark Sky Films Gordon American psychological horror film directed and written by Joe Maggio
Saturday Night Live Cameo
The Chew 2011–2017 ABC Co-host
Good Morning America Guest appearances
Fuck, That’s Delicious 2016 Viceland Guest star Season 2, episode 6: "The Caesar Brothers"
Moltissimo 2017–2017 Viceland/Munchies Host
Worth It 2017 BuzzFeed Guest appearance Season 2, episode 5: "$2 Pizza vs. $2,000 Pizza, New York City"[60]
The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror XXVIII
The Untitled Action Bronson Show Season 1, Episode 19, Mario Batali, Joanna Jędrzejczyk Talk show guest


  • 1998 – "Best New Restaurant of 1998" from the James Beard Foundation for "Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca"
  • 1999 – "Man of the Year" in GQ's chef category
  • 2001 – D'Artagnan Cervena Who's Who of Food & Beverage in America
  • 2002 – "Best Chef: New York City" from the James Beard Foundation
  • 2004 – Three Stars from The New York Times for "Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca" from Ruth Reichl.
  • 2005 – "All-Clad Cookware Outstanding Chef Award" from the James Beard Foundation (national award)
  • 2008 – One Michelin star, Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca, Michelin Guide[61]
  • 2008 – "Best Restaurateur" for Joe Bastianich/Mario Batali for Babbo Ristorante e Enoteca from the James Beard Foundation.[62]
  • Culinary Hall of Fame Induction.[63]


  • Mario Batali Simple Italian Food: Recipes from My Two Villages (1998), ISBN 0-609-60300-0
  • Mario Batali Holiday Food: Family Recipes for the Most Festive Time of the Year (2000), ISBN 0-609-60774-X
  • Vino Italiano: The Regional Wines of Italy (contributor) (2002), ISBN 0-609-60848-7
  • The Babbo Cookbook (2002), ISBN 0-609-60775-8
  • The Artist's Palate (foreword) (2003), ISBN 0-7894-7768-8
  • Molto Italiano: 327 Simple Italian Recipes to Cook at Home (2005), ISBN 0-06-073492-2
  • Mario Tailgates NASCAR Style (2006), ISBN 0-89204-846-8
  • Spain...A Culinary Road Trip (2008), written with Gwyneth Paltrow, and Julia Turshen. ISBN 978-0-06-156093-4
  • Italian Grill (2008), written with Judith Sutton. ISBN 978-0-06-145097-6
  • Molto Gusto: Easy Italian Cooking (2010), written with Mark Ladner. ISBN 978-0-06-192432-3
  • Molto Batali: Simple Family Meals from My Home to Yours (2011), ISBN 978-0-06-209556-5
  • America – Farm to Table: Simple, Delicious Recipes Celebrating Local Farmers written with Jim Webster
  • Mediterranean Summer, A Season on France's Côte d/Azur and Italy's Costa Bella (2007), written by David Shalleck and Erol Munuz ISBN 978-0-7679-2048-3 Contributor Foreword by Mario Batali

Batali is also a main subject of Bill Buford's book Heat: An Amateur's Adventures as Kitchen Slave, Line Cook, Pasta-Maker, and Apprentice to a Dante-Quoting Butcher in Tuscany (2007) ISBN 978-1400034475


  1. ^ a b Gates, Henry Louis Jr. (2010). Faces of America: How 12 Extraordinary People Discovered their Pasts. NYU Press. p. 129. ISBN 978-0814732649. Mario Francesco Batali .
  2. ^ "Batali, Mario". Current Biography Yearbook 2011. Ipswich, MA: H.W. Wilson. 2011. pp. 54–57. ISBN 9780824211219.
  3. ^ "Disgraced celebrity chef Mario Batali surrenders ownership stakes in all of his restaurants". CNBC. March 6, 2019.
  4. ^ "Restaurants | Mario Batali". Archived from the original on February 2, 2019. Retrieved September 19, 2018.
  5. ^ Inzitari, Vanessa (July 20, 2011). "Check Out Mario Batali's Westport Restaurant". The Westport Daily Voice. Retrieved July 13, 2012.
  6. ^ Moskin, Julia (March 6, 2019). "Mario Batali Exits His Restaurants". The New York Times. Retrieved March 7, 2019.
  7. ^ Roger Downey (December 25, 2002). "A Batali Family Christmas". Seattle Weekly. Archived from the original on November 4, 2010. Retrieved April 3, 2012.
  8. ^ "Salami: A Cure for What Ails You", All Things Considered, National Public Radio, September 9, 2006
  9. ^ Stated on Faces of America, 2010
  10. ^ "Hall of Fame". Stuff Yer Face. Archived from the original on July 27, 2017. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  11. ^ "Who is Mario Batali's wife, Susi Cahn?". Newsweek. December 11, 2017. Archived from the original on January 7, 2018. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  12. ^ Reslen, Eileen (December 13, 2017). "Who is Susi Cahn? 9 Things You Should Know About Mario Batali's Wife". Country Living. Retrieved September 8, 2020.
  13. ^ Adams, Rachel (February 11, 2017). "Miles Cahn, Co-Founder of Coach Handbags, Dies at 95". The New York Times. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  14. ^ Paik, Karen (2015), To Infinity and Beyond!: The Story of Pixar Animation Studios, Chronicle Books, p. 227, ISBN 9781452147659
  15. ^ Payne, Patti (March 26, 2015), "'The right combination of science and heart:' Renown Batali restaurant Salumi changes hands", Puget Sound Business Journal
  16. ^ Coren. "CNN Transcripts Interview with Mario Batali". CNN. Retrieved September 14, 2012.
  17. ^ "Clift Hotel's debt sold". San Francisco Chronicle. February 21, 1995. Retrieved March 13, 2017.
  18. ^ "Jeremiah Tower, a Forgotten Father of the American Food Revolution". The New Yorker. Retrieved June 10, 2018.
  19. ^ Keil, Braden (September 5, 2007). "Food Net Chef Mario Flames Out". New York Post. Retrieved September 17, 2007.
  20. ^ "Joe Bastianich, restaurateur and winemaker". Las Vegas Sun. June 12, 2009. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  21. ^ "First Look at La Sirena, the Latest From Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich". New York; Grub Street. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  22. ^ a b "Mario Batali Out as Co-Host of 'The Chew' Amid Sexual Harassment Allegations". Variety. December 11, 2017. Retrieved December 13, 2017.
  23. ^ "Celebrity Chef Mario Batali Settles Lawsuit With His Waitstaff". Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  24. ^ Weiser, Benjamin (March 7, 2012). "Mario Batali Agrees to $5.25 Million Settlement Over Employee Tips". The New York Times. Archived from the original on February 2, 2018. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  25. ^ "Chefs for the Marcellus: Look Who's Signed On". Archived from the original on May 28, 2013. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
  26. ^ "Chefs for the Marcellus: About Us". Archived from the original on May 26, 2013. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
  27. ^ Batali; Telepan (May 30, 2013). "Fracking vs. food: N.Y.'s choice". New York Daily News. Retrieved May 30, 2013.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  28. ^ a b c "Mario Batali's Businesses Distance Themselves From His Name". Eater. Vox Media. Retrieved December 13, 2017.
  29. ^ Schneier, Matthew. "The Transcendentalists". Retrieved December 25, 2013.
  30. ^ "For Some of New York's Most Successful, Transcendental Meditation". The New York Observer. August 6, 2014. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  31. ^ Anna Coren. "Transcript: Interview with Mario Batali". Talk Asia. CNN International.
  32. ^ Plagianos, Irene; Greenwald, Kitty (December 11, 2017). "Mario Batali Steps Away From Restaurant Empire Following Sexual Misconduct Allegations". Eater. Vox Media.
  33. ^ Disis, Jill (December 11, 2017). "Mario Batali: 'The Chew' host steps away amid sexual misconduct allegations". CNN. Retrieved December 13, 2017.
  34. ^ Vagianos, Alanna (December 12, 2017). "Now It's 8 Women Accusing Chef Mario Batali Of Sexual Misconduct". HuffPost. Retrieved December 13, 2017.
  35. ^ Hauser, Christine; Severson, Kim; Moskin, Julia (December 11, 2017). "Mario Batali Steps Away From Restaurants Amid Sexual Misconduct Allegations". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  36. ^ "Celebrity chef and 'The Chew' co-host Mario Batali fired by ABC following sexual misconduct allegations". KTRK-TV. December 14, 2017. Retrieved December 15, 2017.
  37. ^ "Food Network Freezes Plans to Release New 'Molto Mario' Episodes". Eater. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  38. ^ "Target Is Pulling Mario Batali's Products From Its Stores". Eater. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  39. ^ "Mario Batali Products Pulled From Target Amid Sexual Misconduct Allegations". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  40. ^ a b Anderson Cooper (May 20, 2018). "Mario Batali and the Spotted Pig". 60 Minutes. CBS News.
  41. ^ Al Mancini, 3 Mario Batali restaurants on Las Vegas Strip to close, Las Vegas Review-Journal (May 25, 2018).
  42. ^ Southall, Ashley; Moskin, Julia (January 9, 2019). "Police Close Sexual Assault Investigations of Mario Batali". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved May 9, 2022.
  43. ^ a b c Moskin, Julia (March 6, 2019). "Mario Batali Exits His Restaurants". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved March 7, 2019.
  44. ^ Thorn, Bret (March 6, 2019). "Mario Batali out at B&B Hospitality Group". Nation's Restaurant News. Retrieved March 6, 2019.
  45. ^ "Mario Batali and partner settle sexual harassment probe for $600,000". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved August 27, 2021.
  46. ^ a b c Severson, Kim (May 10, 2022). "Mario Batali Found Not Guilty in Sexual Assault Trial". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331.
  47. ^ "Mario Batali facing criminal charges in alleged Boston assault". May 23, 2019. Retrieved May 23, 2019.
  48. ^ Severson, Kim; Berke, Ben (May 24, 2019). "Mario Batali Appears in Court to Deny Charges of Indecent Assault". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 10, 2020.
  49. ^ "Mario Batali waives jury trial in sexual misconduct case". May 9, 2022. Retrieved May 9, 2022.
  50. ^ "Celebrity chef Mario Batali opts for non-jury trial in sexual misconduct case". CTVNews. May 9, 2022. Retrieved May 9, 2022.
  51. ^ Celebrity Chef Mario Batali Found Not Guilty in Boston Sexual Misconduct Trial, NBC News (March 10, 2022).
  52. ^ Mark Morales and Ray Sanchez (May 10, 2022). "Celebrity chef Mario Batali is acquitted of groping woman at Boston restaurant". CNN. Retrieved May 12, 2022.
  53. ^ "Chef Mario Batali - Show Molto Mario - Show List A to Z - TV". Food Network. Retrieved September 21, 2010.
  54. ^ Mario Eats Italy, Food Network, retrieved December 13, 2017
  55. ^ "Food Network: Ciao America with Mario Batali". September 24, 2003. Archived from the original on September 24, 2003.
  56. ^ "Healthy Recipe Collections, Party Ideas, Quick & Easy Recipes". Food Network. Retrieved September 21, 2010.
  57. ^ Dennett, Darcy (June 7, 2016), Mario Batali - DEL POSTO, retrieved December 13, 2017
  58. ^ "Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations: New Jersey". Retrieved September 21, 2010.
  59. ^ Stanley, Alessandra (February 9, 2010). "Henry Louis Gates Jr. Looks at Americans' Genealogy". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
  60. ^ "BuzzFeed's food-fest series 'Worth It' has racked up 280 million views — and cable TV should be worried". Business Insider. Retrieved December 14, 2017.
  61. ^ Michelin Guide New York City 2000000 Archived 2011-09-17 at the Wayback Machine
  62. ^ "2008 James Beard Awards, Final Nominees Announced". Eater NY. Retrieved January 7, 2018.
  63. ^ "Mario Batali Inducted". Archived from the original on June 21, 2013. Retrieved December 20, 2012.

External links[edit]