James Corden vs Balthazar: Drama escalates as NYC restaurant owner accuses comedian of ‘lying’
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The feud between New York’s restaurant Balthazar and James Corden is far from over, with the owner accusing the British comedian of ‘lying’ when the latter claimed he hadn’t "done anything wrong, on any level" after the restaurateur called him the "most abusive customer" and barred him from his establishment.
It all began when the famous bistro owner Keith McNally made a public statement on Instagram on Monday that the Late Late Show host had allegedly mistreated his table staff on several occasions. In the post, McNally described Corden as a “tiny cretin of a man” and that he was no longer allowed at the restaurant.
McNally then went on to call Corden “the most abusive customer to my Balthazar servers since the restaurant opened 25 years ago”, before adding that he “86’d Corden” which is an American lingo, meaning that the 44-year-old actor is now barred from receiving any service.
However, in a subsequent Instagram post a day later, McNally stated that he had chosen to lift the ban after Corden apparently called him personally and "apologised profusely." "Having f***ed up myself more than most people," he added, "I passionately believe in second chances," adding, "All is forgiven."
While McNally appeared to be ready to move on, Corden addressed the allegations against him for the first time in an interview with The New York Times on Thursday (October 20), dismissing the restaurateur’s remarks as "so silly.
He said: “I haven’t done anything wrong, on any level. So why would I ever cancel this (interview)? I was there. I get it. I feel so Zen about the whole thing. Because I think it’s so silly. I just think it’s beneath all of us. It’s beneath you. It’s certainly beneath your publication.”
‘He should at least admit he did wrong’
This prompted McNally to react to Corden’s response on his Instagram on Friday (October 21), where he questioned whether the comedian was “joking” when he claimed no wrongdoing. He wrote: “...when James Corden said in yesterday’s NY Times that he hadn’t done ‘anything wrong, on any level,’ was he joking? Or was he denying being abusive to my servers? Whatever Corden meant, his implication was clear: he didn’t do it.
“Although I didn’t witness the incident, lots of my restaurant’s floor staff did. They had nothing to gain by lying. Corden did. I wish James Corden would live up to his Almighty initials and come clean. If the supremely talented actor wants to retrieve the respect he had from all his fans (all 4 of them) before this incident, then he should at least admit he did wrong.”
McNally then went on as far as offering Corden free meals for “the next 10 years” if the actor goes “one step further” and apologises to the servers he insulted. According to McNally’s initial allegations against Corden last Monday, the late night host was “extremely nasty” to staff at the French eatery on two separate occasions, including allegedly yelling at the server for mixing up the order.
During an interview with The New York Times regarding McNally’s allegations, Corden stated that he hadn’t "really read anything" about the feud before describing it as "strange." The comedian further said that just a small percentage of the general public is aware of McNally’s charges.
He said: “Should we not all be a little grown-up about this?” “I promise you, ask around this restaurant. They don’t know about this. Maybe 15 percent of people. I’ve been here, been walking around New York, not one person’s come up to me. We’re dealing in two worlds here.” He said he might have to address it on Monday’s show, even despite claiming it “feels like such a silly thing to talk about”.