In December of 2017, "Eater" reported that Celebrity Chef Mario Batali had been sexually harassing women for the last two decades.
After the allegations hit the media, Batali announced that he would be stepping down from his restaurant empire. At the time, Batali and his former partner Joe Bastianich's restaurant group included 16 restaurants.
“Although the identities of most of the individuals mentioned in these stories have not been revealed to me, much of the behavior described does, in fact, match up with ways I have acted. That behavior was wrong and there are no excuses,” said Batali to “Eater.” “...For this reason, I am going to step away from day-to-day operations of my businesses. We built these restaurants so that our guests could have fun and indulge, but I took that too far in my own behavior. I won’t make that mistake again.”
Fast forward to today, Batali has completely removed himself from ownership from his restaurant group by selling all of the shares of his business to the Bastianich family.
“I have reached an agreement with Joe [Bastianich] and no longer have any stake in the restaurants we built together. I wish him the best of luck in the future," said Batali in a statement Wednesday, as reported by “The Blast.”
He “will no longer profit from the restaurants in any way, shape or form," according to the Bastianich family.
Batali is planning to sell his shares of the high-end Italian grocery chain Eataly too.
At the end of last year, "Eater" published a follow-up story where it was revealed that Batali's restaurants saw a 30 percent drop in sales following the multiple sexual misconduct allegations. The article also condemned the group for allowing him to continue to collect profits while the process to buy out Batali lingered for over a year.
"The New York Times" reported in April that Batali would divest from his restaurants, allowing his partners to buy out his stake. But the negotiations, meant to close in July, have gone on, and anyone who eats at the restaurants Batali made famous is putting more money in the chef’s pockets," wrote "Eater" in December of last year.
A little less than a year and a half later, Batali has officially sold his stake to his partner. Will this encourage diners to visit the chef's former restaurants now that he is no longer tied to them financially?
The #MeToo movement has helped to expose the former misconduct of a number of celebrity chefs and now they are finally experiencing the consequences.
Mario Batali, John Besh, Mike Isabella, Ken Friedman, and Tom Colicchio are some of the many that have received multiple accusations of sexual harassment in 2017 and 2018.
At the end of 2017, Foodable Host of The Barron Report Paul Barron gave his predictions for what was to come for 2018. His No. 2 prediction was "the demise of the celebrity chef." Watch the video below where Barron shows how much of a hit Batali's Sentiment Score took following his sexual harassment scandal.