Famed New York restaurateur Keith McNally outraged customers, fellow restaurant owners and even his own work associates with a social media post about the Hamas attack on Israel.
The Balthazar owner posted a photo of the strikes on Instagram with the caption: ‘The More Utterly Repugnant The Facts, The Greater The Responsibility Becomes To Listen To The Other Side.’
Comments immediately flooded his posts with customers and even top hospitality names from Surf Lodge and Sixty Hotels, vowing never to eat at one of McNally’s restaurants ever again.
‘I stand by what I wrote this morning: THE MORE UTTERLY REPUGNANT THE FACTS, THE GREATER THE RESPONSIBILITY TO LISTEN TO T HE OTHER SIDE,’ McNally told Page Six.
‘This doesn’t mean forgive. This doesn’t mean not retaliate. It simply means listen. There’s nothing to lose by listening. Nothing whatsoever.’
Restaurateur Keith McNally (pictured) is known for his celebrity hotspot restaurants and posting provocative comments online
McNally (left) poses with British-born Vogue editor Anna Wintour (right). He has sparked controversy before over his comments that British people are the worst tippers and even banning James Corden from visiting his restaurants
President Joe Biden said at least 11 Americans were killed and as of Monday afternoon, more than 900 Israelis are confirmed dead while more than 2,000 are injured in the Hamas attack.
‘I’m part Jewish. In the 1970s I lived for long stretches of time on an Israeli kibbutz. My older brother Peter risked his life spying for Israel. I think the atrocities perpetrated by Hamas are vile, barbaric and totally repugnant,’ said McNally.
Page Six claimed sources told them partners from McNally’s flagships Balthazar and Morandi asked him to take down the post, but he refused to do so.
But McNally refuted that claim: ‘I only have two partners in my restaurants. Stephen Starr in Pastis and Helen Benham in Balthazar and Morandi. I’ve not heard a word from either one today,’ he said.
A spokesperson for Starr Restaurants, Stephen Starr’s business, said: ‘The horrific acts carried out by Hamas against the Israeli and all Jewish people are indefensible and barbaric.
‘This was a terrorist attack. Starr Restaurants and Pastis do not in any way share the opinions expressed today by Keith McNally.’
The restaurateur admitted that an associate from his Meatpacking restaurant Pastis confronted him about it.
McNally said: ‘Pastis’ landlord’s partner, Jared Epstein, who emailed me earlier mistakenly thinking I wrote “Support The Other Side” and not “LISTEN to the other side.”‘
Israeli airstrikes on Gaza City (pictured) continued Monday night after more than 900 Israelis were killed and over 2,000 were injured in an attack by the Hamas
People in Israel were extinguishing their cars Saturday after the Hamas surprise attack. Many people are still missing and believed to have been taken hostage by Hamas
Epstein said he did not email the business owner but did reply to the post: ‘Oh boy, I am sure this heinous post will lead to many lost friends, supporters and followers of you including myself.’
‘This attack is not just against Israel but against all Jewish people. Hamas is an enemy of Christians, Hindus, minorities, LGBTQ, atheists, people of color and anyone who differs from their extremist idealist ideology that all Jews must die. We all have skin in the game and must show our support for Israel,’ said Epstein.
The landlord said he fully supports Starr and said he believes, ‘in my heart that no Pastis employees or patrons share Keith McNally’s views.’
Jayma Cardoso, founder and creative director of Montauk’s swanky Surf Lodge said McNally’s comments ‘ignore the horror of the actions perpetrated against Israeli civilians at the hands of Hamas.’
‘He used his platform to spread ignorance, and has yet to rectify his comments in any respect. Shame on him,’ she said.
Hotelier Jason Pomeranc, of Sixty Hotels, said, ‘There is no political justification for genocide. Did you think 911 was a time for witty banter or for moral clarity?’
In response to McNally’s pro-Hamas and pro-Palestine post, New Yorkers blasted McNally and vowed to boycott his businesses.
One person said, ‘You and your restaurants suck.’
‘Cancelling my Pastis reservation just like you’re about to get cancelled,’ said on user.
Another said: ‘You have just lost your biggest customer base. Myself and Jews in New York love your restaurants.’
‘I think you regret not using your brain before you spoke on this one. There is no “other side” to killing innocent people,’ said one user.
Earlier this year the London-born owner of celebrity hotspots was slammed for saying English people are the worst tippers.
McNally previously barred British talk show host James Corden from his restaurants last year over his ‘abusive’ behavior towards servers. Corden apologized and the ban was revoked.
DailyMail.com has reached out to Keith McNally for comment.
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk
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