Jean Georges Enterprises… [UPDATE]

August 15th, 2010 by Dick Johnson

 

Uh oh:

"A former cook at celeb chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten‘s JoJo Restaurant said she had to endure heaping helpings of sexual harassment… Arlene Keith says she went to work as a meat cook… and was subjected to vile, sexually explicit remarks and advances by another cook… When the alleged victim complained to her boss, he began being abusive to her as well, the lawsuit says…
Vongerichten, named as a defendant but not accused of any harassment, called the suit ‘frivolous.’" [The NY Post]

 

Hmm.
Well, the last time the Jean Georges organization faced a "frivolous" (or whatever) lawsuit, it cost them $1.75M. (We’re just sayin’.)

I mean, sure, $1.75M may seem like a lot of money to you, but that’s just like spare change or ‘tip money’ to them. Thanks for all your concern sending this news to us and everything, but fret not— apparently, they can afford it!

 

P.S. Oh yeah, see the "UPDATE" in the title up there? Well, that’s how you do an update, you fucking scumbags.

 

 

**See also (earlier):
• Jean Georges Enterprises – Shit, meet Fan. Fan, meet Shit. [Part 1 and Part 2]
“Mercer… Lobby… Screaming” starring Lois Freedman

 

For more on this story, read PX This – The Revised Edition [and PX This Too (Coming Soon in the Autumn of 2010)]

 

 

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24 Responses to “Jean Georges Enterprises… [UPDATE]”

  1. virgo Says:

    oh good, i’m so glad they can afford it with their $100m. I was so worried for them.

    btw, a friend of mine worked at abc kitchen for a little while. he left bc “everyone was so stupid.” exact quote.

    but he did say that lois freedman liked him. obvs, he is a really cute male model.

  2. DyFlux Says:

    It’s A much crazier world out in the BOH. The stories will blow you away. I think the article makes the harassed cook look stupid. As if she was over reacting. No one knows the true details as of yet. It was more a mechanism of classic journalism to instigate a opinion from the other side. For all its worth they can dish up and stop doing stupid shit that cost them money. Run their company the way its supposed to be run. I think its asking a blind man to see. However, it will be quite interesting how this turns out.

  3. Inkslinger Says:

    I put a comment under The Post article:

    08/17/2010 10:20 AM
    @StevieVong
    Well, as a person that also used to work for the company, I read it and thought it was very credible. I was happy to see that someone put it all in print, especially in such a well-written and funny way. I liked the book so much, I became a fan of its industry forums, and I have since stayed on to become a contributor and administrator of the website.
    And I think if you really read it and know the business, you can easily see how it was not that hard to go back to work for them, especially if you thought that things might be different at a new restaurant with new people. Sadly that’s not the case, but mostly because their reputation is now so bad, no one good will work for them. The only reason the few people closest to JG have stayed so long is because they’re insulated. Some of the best people in the biz have worked for JG, it’s good to have on your resume. But it works against JG, because it’s a tiny industry and everyone talks. I hope he thinks losing his reputation and image is worth it.
    - Inkslinger
    http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/manhattan/sue_chef_hits_jean_georges_empire_VcH9xKnTD5OQyqDjzlPz3I#comments

    I used the pxthis email account to log in, but I didn’t know that the user name was “I’m microfamous, bitch”!

    :O :D :D

  4. Inkslinger Says:

    @DyFlux

    Oh, we would believe the crazy BOH stories here! :D

    I don’t think that the article made the cook look stupid, just because I know that’s the way The Post writes. True, we shouldn’t judge until we know all the details, but her naming JG himself in the case if he didn’t actually do anything wrong isn’t fair either. But “Waiter” is right, it’s hard to feel sorry for them, especially after they didn’t want to admit to any wrongdoing stealing the employee tips after getting sued more than once.

    But like Virgo says, they don’t need our pity anyway, because they have $100M!! :D :D

  5. Inkslinger Says:

    By the way, The Post wouldn’t accept my comment at first, it kept saying that it had inappropriate words. I didn’t have any curses in there, so all I did was take out the words “PX This” and THEN it took my comment!

    :O

    The Post must have put “PX This” in their word filter!! :O

  6. DyFlux Says:

    I thought the blog was funny myself. Well when your a radical your hated and then loved by more than hated. To a cook that read the post article it seems to them that the things the cook retaliated were ridiculous. Im very sure knowing the BOH that it was much serious than that. I also know the chef d’ cuisine as well. I hope that this fat fuck chokes on a sausage. For letting this happen to a young female. Hatin’ yeah. I hate when things like this has to go down for a female. BOH they say is no place for a woman.

  7. Dishwasher Says:

    Let’s not forget JG probably has ‘Page Six protection’ ;) lol

    Funny how the story came out on a Saturday instead of a weekday when it might have ben seen by alot more people. ;)

  8. DyFlux Says:

    @ Dishwasher
    It’s good and bad. It could ruin the reputation of the cook. The publicity. The cook also has to lose as well. I am pretty sure it’s going to ruin the chances of the cook to work again at a high caliber restaurant. Who knows the skill of this woman? It is a career path rather than someone working in the industry to pay bills. I could imagine the crap this woman is going through. Hey I hope she wins because this is a step to the right direction to women in the BOH. Someone finally said something. And didn’t quit, or suck dick to make it easier for them for shit like this not to happen to them. Women are a minority group in the BOH. The one’s on the top are often talentless. Pussy is a very strong collateral. And those that are talented and actually worked for it, had to deal with a lot of nonsense to get there. and those are the ones you need to look up to. She already set the path to awareness.

  9. Dick Johnson Says:

    LOL. I love when these so-called unbiased journalistic outlets get busted being shady.

    Speaking of which, I like how B’eater covered the story with kid gloves, too. Where’s the big “All is Not Well in the World of Jean-Georges” headline?

    http://www.abbe-diaz.com/2009/10/refreshing-me-furiously/#comment-150

    That being said, Arlene Keith naming JG in the suit does take away from her credibility. It looks more like she is in it for the money and not the principle. I’m all for going after someone that’s done you wrong, but JG having so many venues makes it somewhat unlikely that he even knew what was going on at all. So suing him if he actually did nothing wrong is pretty sleazy. Then again, the lawyers probably wouldn’t even take the case on without at least a shot at JG’s money.

    Gotta say I’d love to see what he’s going to do now. It seems at this point that filing Chapter 11 for JoJo would be a good move.

    http://www.pxthis.com/2009/12/restaurant-enterprise-410/

    LOL. Imagine the field day that Beater would have with that one? I’d like to see those dumbasses go on all day about what a “failure” JG is.
    http://ny.eater.com/archives/2009/12/salacious_lawsuits.php#more

    I miss the forum’s emoticons. It’s not as easy to show sarcasm now.

  10. Dick Johnson Says:

    @DyFlux

    We must have been posting at the same time, I didn’t see your last comment.

    Don’t get me wrong, I do feel bad for her. Like I said, she’s probably stuck between a rock and a hard place, because lawyers don’t take on cases unless they think they have a good chance at getting paid well.

    But it’s her suing JG and not just the chef de cuisine that’s going to make it tough for her in the industry from now on. It’s the big bosses (owners, investors, etc) that do all the hiring ultimately, and no one is going to want to take the chance of being named in a lawsuit and blindsided just for being unaware. It’s a bad catch-22 for her.

  11. abbe Says:

    i ♡ you guys.

    :)

  12. DyFlux Says:

    @Dick

    I get and understand you very well. However, JG must have known what was going on whether he was physically present or not. The article explained that she complained to the chef d cuisine. He retaliated which the article says he was abusive as well. A situation at this caliber had to be brought to JG’s attention. Unless, the Chef d cuisine was even more irresponsible and not letting him know truthfully what was going on. To me it seems JG didn’t give a fuck and or didn’t think the situation was to escalate to this point. Underestimated most likely. He should establish a good hr department for these situations to protect his employees rights as well as his money. Since his empire is expanding it’s only appropriate to establish something along those lines. Of course they are “very intelligent”, and “very business savvy” that they don’t have a hr department. It’s not the lawyer we are talking about. Of course they go in for the money. We are talking about the cook herself. I don’t think she would put her career on the line to go through this. A real cook has better priorities than money and that is the passion for the food itself. That is why the pay is so shitty for a cook. They used corny examples of retaliation. I think it was a journalist mechanism to infiltrate a response from the cook to make story head line. Again, I am only going by the facts of the article. No one knows yet exactly what happened. So pretty much it is all theory, until fact are proven.

  13. MILFweed Says:

    Well if she has photos of his penis in her text messages then it shouldn’t be so hard to prove. I just hope that she also has texts showing that she rebuffed him.

    Also it doesn’t make sense that the head chef told JG if he also resorted to abuse after he was informed what was happening. I would never go to a JG rest but even I find it hard to believe that JG was honestly told everything and then he turned around and told the head chef to go back and abuse the female cook.

    As for her I hope she thought long and hard about this. These lawsuits can go on forever but in the meantime she is damaging her livelihood. She obviously can’t trust the press since they will spin the story any damned way they please. So in that sense she has very little choice in terms of retribution. I don’t blame her for suing but it remains to be seen whether it will all be worth it in the end.

    It’s a shame that the lawyers probably told her not to talk about it because if those are really corny examples that the Post used then it would be very interesting to hear her whole story. If she were really being honest then she shouldn’t be afraid to tell her side.

    Like Abbs did for example. ;)

  14. MILFweed Says:

    @ DJ: Speaking of which, I like how B’eater covered the story with kid gloves, too. Where’s the big “All is Not Well in the World of Jean-Georges” headline?

    Exactly. They are really pieces of shit.

    After what I have seen with Abbs and the press I would never trust them. Don’t even get me started with the things I experienced myself when I worked in PR.

    It could be good if the female cook told her story but she would pretty much have to do it here. That way at least the industry could hear her side to help with her livelihood but she would be protected from the biased JG-loving press. Even if they picked up the story and spun it around it’s not those readers that would be making the decisions to employ her anyway. It wouldn’t matter what that kind of public thinks because those are all low-lifes anyway.

  15. MILFweed Says:

    Also kudos you guys. After all that you former employees of JG have been through I am so impressed that you would still defend him and keep a fair and balanced judgment.

    But like you said – no need to worry about him. He has millions to spare! Ha ha!

  16. DyFlux Says:

    Easy for you to say. I’m speaking as a female cook myself. According to law. There is a process to a sexual harassment grievance if you look it up in a government website. It has to go through not just the chef but people higher than him. If they ignore it the person has a right to take legal action. I didn’t say that the chef was told by JG to abuse her. The kitchen world is way different than the FOH. Where FOH has deal with the catty side of the industry and we have to work like mules and get shit for it when we do a slight mistake in 130 degree weather. That is her prerogative if she doesn’t want to talk to the press. The point is that it is settled in court with the real facts. With out no media or stupid people saying shit that have no clue what’s going on and I include myself. It is worth it I think. She’s standing up for what she believes in and if your challenged as a female and your sex. OF course its worth it. Its like being racists and getting abusive treatment because your whatever race. Then you have to act or do something against your will because of your race so A) they could leave you alone B) keep on because your whatever race. same shit different title. For all I know she could be in for the money. However I know as a Female cook for seven years, if your a meat cook chef d’ partie has been in the industry for a while. real cooks dont care so much for money. we get shitty pay for hard long work hours. if you stay then you like it or you have no other skills besides cooking. I think he was told and probably advised to try to make the cook quit. get rid of the problem. (thats where the abuse comes in) Females tend to be docile and settle. I don’t think he expected that the cook would have the balls to stand up for herself. Even if it meant that her career was down the toilet. priorities my dear friend. life is full of tough decisions that you have to make. if she made it this far. She’s going for home run. Damage is done already. ANd I think she should go all the way. Especially when she has proof.

  17. Inkslinger Says:

    “I think he was told and probably advised to try to make the cook quit. get rid of the problem.”

    That actually wouldn’t surprise me. But that could also have come only as high as the level of Director of Operations, and not necessarily JG directly. That actually would not surprise me AT ALL.
    But you’re right, if that came from the DO, and JG keeps the DO despite all the problems already, then JG does bear the responsibility.

    Speaking of which, isn’t Lois a partner as well as DO of JoJo? I wonder if she was named in the lawsuit too…..

  18. Inkslinger Says:

    And I agree, I certainly wouldn’t trust the media. I mean, they can write whatever they want, but they won’t allow comments mentioning the title of a book that’s very relevant to the subject at hand?

    I would go back and say something about it in the comments again, but then they’d probably just erase them all. Shady, indeed.

  19. virgo Says:

    stay classy, ny post.

  20. DyFlux Says:

    IF Lois is the Director of Operations, then JG would know. Its like an oreo cookie, the two sides are together because of the white stuff, but really its one dam cookie. Unless of course, the DO was irresponsible him/herself and didn’t tell him. (Very unlikely at such a high caliber). Just like I stated with the chef d’cuisine in my previous blog. Sexual harassment cases are very expensive to a defendant. Unless the DO was that incredibly stupid not to warn JG what was going on. I don’t believe it. He knew. AS I stated before, squash it with intimidation like nothing ever happened. Then the world of JG would live happily ever after, the end. But who knew the bitch was ballzy. If it is for the right reasons, I am sure and hope so. She’s fucked as career goes, damage is done for her too besides the other shit. My advice is GO ALL THE WAY DEAR! GO ALL THE FUCKIN WAY!!!!!!

  21. DyFlux Says:

    BTW the ny post deleted all the comments.

  22. DyFlux Says:

    internet flaw there still there

  23. abbe Says:

    “Its like an oreo cookie, the two sides are together because of the white stuff, but really its one dam cookie.”

    ha ha HA HAHA HAAH HA HAH hahahah

    that’s funny.

  24. Inkslinger Says:

    @DyFlux

    You say “ballzy” I say “crazy,” tomayto tomahto….

    :D

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