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Balthazar owner Keith McNally responds after James Corden says feud is ‘so silly’

The comedian dismissed the restaurateur’s allegations and subsequent ban as ‘so silly’

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Friday 21 October 2022 18:17 BST
Related: Try Guys wife claims she saw James Corden shout at restaurant worker
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Balthazar owner Keith McNally has responded to James Corden’s claim he hadn’t “done anything wrong, on any level” after the restaurateur called him the “most abusive customer” and banned him from his restaurant.

The issue between the owner of the New York City eatery and Corden began on Monday when McNally alleged on Instagram that The Late Late Show host had mistreated his staff on multiple occasions. In the post, in which he branded the comedian a “tiny cretin of a man,” McNally said Corden was no longer allowed at the restaurant.

However, in a follow-up post shared to Instagram a day later, McNally said he had decided to reverse the ban. He said he came to the decision after Corden allegedly called him and “apologised profusely”.

“Having f***ed up myself more than most people, I strongly believe in second chances,”  he wrote at the time, adding: “All is forgiven.”

While McNally appeared ready to put the feud behind him, Corden addressed the accusations against him for the first time in an interview with The New York Times on Thursday, where he dismissed the restaurateur’s remarks as “so silly”.

“I haven’t done anything wrong, on any level. So why would I ever cancel this [interview]? I was there. I get it,” Corden said. “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.”

On Friday, McNally reacted to Corden’s response on his Instagram, where he questioned whether the comedian was “joking” when he claimed no wrongdoing.

The restaurateur then claimed that, “whatever Corden meant,” the comedian’s “implication was clear: he didn’t do it”.

In the post, McNally went on to note that, while he didn’t witness the instances of Corden’s alleged mistreatment of Balthazar staff himself, “lots of [his] restaurant’s floor staff did”.

McNally then claimed that he would allow Corden to “eat for free at Balthazar for the next 10 years” if the comedian was to go “one step further and apologise to the two servers he insulted”.

According to McNally’s initial allegations against Corden, the late night host was “extremely nasty” to staff at the French eatery on two separate occasions.

While reflecting on McNally’s allegations during his interview with The New York Times, Corden claimed that he hadn’t “really read anything” about the saga, before summing up the entire drama as “strange”.

The comedian also alleged that only a small per centage of the population is actually aware of McNally’s allegations.

“Should we not all be a little grown-up about this?” he said. “I promise you, ask around this restaurant. They don’t know about this. Maybe 15 per cent 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.”

However, he noted that he would likely have to address it on Monday’s show, even despite claiming it “feels like such a silly thing to talk about”.

“I think I’m probably going to have to talk about it on Monday’s show. My feeling, often, is, never explain, never complain. But I’ll probably have to talk about it,” he said.

The Independent has contacted McNally and Corden for comment.

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