Celebrity chef Mario Batali, who severed ties with his restaurant empire and business holdings following several allegations of sexual misconduct and assault, now faces criminal charges connected to an alleged incident in Boston in 2017.
Last year, a woman accused Batali of groping her at the now-defunct Towne Stove and Spirits in Back Bay, near the city’s Eataly location, which Batali opened in late 2016 with then-partner Joe Bastianich and several other partners. (Batali has since divested from his restaurant interests, including Eataly and Babbo Pizzeria e Enoteca in Boston’s Seaport District. Towne was unrelated to the restaurant group, just located near Eataly.)
The woman, whose name was redacted in new court filings, alleged that Batali had groped her while the two were taking a selfie together inside Towne. She also said Batali had asked her to join him in his hotel room. Further sexual misconduct allegations against Batali are far-reaching, spanning more than 20 years and including unwanted touching, abusive language, and an NYPD investigation into Batali for two sexual assault accusations.
For the allegations surrounding the Towne incident, Batali is scheduled for arraignment in Boston Municipal Court on Friday, May 24. A lawyer representing Batali told the Boston Globe that Batali denied the allegations and claimed that the criminal allegations were “without merit.” If Batali is convicted of these criminal charges, he could face jail time and would be required to register as a sex offender.