Celebrated New York restaurateur Keith McNally has said the ban on Graydon Carter from his restaurants is ‘forever or at least one week. Unless Graydon kisses my feet.’
McNally, whose culinary empire includes Balthazar, Pastis and Minetta Tavern, had written a furious post on Instagram earlier this month denouncing the behavior of someone he previously considered a friend.
The former Vanity Fair editor had booked a table for 12 on a Wednesday lunchtime earlier this month and never showed up.
Carter had booked for 1pm but what infuriated McNally was that his assistant did not call to cancel until an hour later.
NYC restaurateur Keith McNally, 69, says ban on former Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter is ‘Forever. Or at least one week. Unless Graydon kisses my feet’
Graydon Carter, 71, who was editor of Vanity Fair from 1992 to 2017, had a lunch reservation earlier this month
‘His response was bulls**t. Graydon Carter knows he was a no-show without calling three times before. Look, there are more important things than no-shows at a Manhattan restaurant, but the f***er’s an editor. His whole life revolves around reshaping events to conform to his narrative,’ McNally said to The Daily Beast.
‘Will you back down, and lift your ban on him, or is it total and forever?’ the interviewer asked.
‘Unless Graydon kisses my feet, the ban’s forever. Or at least one week,’ McNally responded with humor.
Carter responded to the supposed olive branch, ‘It’s fiction, and I’m just not going to engage.’
The offer of possibly being able to dine once more, should Carter decide to ‘kiss’ McNally’s feet is a small concession and comes after a far more furious response at the time of his no-show.
‘Perhaps, being something of a social bigwig, Mr Carter thinks he is above having to cancel restaurant reservations,’ wrote the London-born restaurateur two weeks ago.
‘Perhaps. But I’ll tell you one thing. The fancy f***** will never be allowed to make a reservation at one of my restaurants again. Never.’
Carter’s party of 12 was due at Morandi, McNally’s restaurant in the Greenwich Village, but the reservation wasn’t cancelled until one hour after the booking
He said that he had expected Carter, 71, who has since 2006 owned The Waverly Inn in Greenwich Village, to better understand the restaurant business.
‘Because Mr Carter’s a restaurateur himself, my chef, manager and floor staff were eager for the lunch to go perfectly for him,’ McNally wrote.
‘Extra staff were brought in to help with service, and 2 tables of 6 were meticulously set up and ready for Graydon Carter by 1pm.
‘Only he didn’t show up at 1pm.’
McNally said that staff at the Italian trattoria, which he opened in the West Village in 2007, were turning away other diners as Carter’s large table sat empty.
McNally laid out his anger in a detailed Instagram post earlier in May
McNally, 69, said that Carter had ‘upset the equilibrium of the restaurant, and cost the servers money in tips.’
And he said the famed magazine editor, who now runs the weekly newsletter Air Mail, had previously done the same – once at Minetta Tavern and twice at Balthazar.
McNally has previously raised eyebrows with his Instagram comments.
In February he defended Ghislaine Maxwell, in jail awaiting trial for sex trafficking with Jeffrey Epstein, and insisted she was ‘currently innocent’.
He then praised Woody Allen and Soon-Yi for appearing at Balthazar, captioning a picture of them at his restaurant: ‘I’ve never been as happy at Balthazar as I was last night to see the beautiful Soon-Yi and her husband dining there.’
That post was covered in the May 15 issue of Air Mail, which described McNally as ‘going off the menu.’
McNally was referred to as a ‘sometimes dour 69-year-old with fewer than 15,000 followers on Instagram’.
Carter said in a statement to Page Six: ‘My office did forget to cancel the lunch reservation until a bit after 1:30, which is wretched and we will be making a donation today to the restaurant’s tip pool to cover what the staff would have made.
‘As a fellow restaurateur I fully understand the implications of a large party no show.
‘As for the rest of McNally’s deranged rant, it is pure fiction.
‘I rarely eat at his places and this all stems from the story we did about his most recent Instagram controversies in last week’s Air Mail.’