Batali vs. the Bankers
Posted on Nov 10, 2011
Mario Batali, feel the wrath of the 1 percenters. The ginger-haired and orange-shod celebrity chef and owner of fancy New York eateries Babbo and Del Posto caused an uproar among Wall Streeters when he talked about bankers, Hitler and Stalin in the same sentence.
Batali’s zinger happened at a Time magazine-sponsored lunch Tuesday, and a reporter from Forbes didn’t miss the chance to stir the pot with his target demographic later that day. By Thursday, the blowback was in full effect, as angry bankers took to the Web to exact revenge. Batali backpedaled, but he may have to do more than he’s done to win back the offended financiers and their mouth-watering expense accounts. —KA
Los Angeles Times:
Channeling some of the anger of Occupy Wall Street, Batali bemoaned the influence of the financial industry with a rather inapt comparison:
“The ways the bankers have kind of toppled the way money is distributed and taken most of it into their hands is as good as Stalin or Hitler and the evil guys.”
This did not sit well with the many bankers who take their clients to Batali establishments such as Babbo and Del Posto—and they made their ire known swiftly.
In the restaurant review section of the Bloomberg financial network—the online home of Wall Street—Batali’s restaurants were bombarded with negative reviews. By Thursday morning, all of the five most reviewed restaurants were Batali owned, and nearly every one of those reviews said “don’t go.”
Wikimedia Commons: Charles Haynes (CC-BY-SA) / U.S.
Oops: As the L.A. Times noted, Batali also managed to slight the Occupy Wall Street movement at the same event Tuesday.