James Corden has said it was “never my intention” to upset staff at a New York restaurant but acknowledged he had been “ungracious” during an incident that saw him banned from the venue.
The soon to be former host of The Late Late Show was branded a “tiny cretin of a man” by Keith McNally, owner of Balthazar, on Instagram over his alleged treatment of the New York City restaurant staff. McNally went on to call Corden the “most abusive customer” that Balthazar staff had ever dealt with since the restaurant opened 25 years ago.
In the post shared to his 78,000 followers on Instagram, McNally called out Corden over two alleged instances of mistreating his staff - however, the ban has since been reversed after Corden reached out to apologise.
Off the back of his temporary banning, other establishments have also taken to barring Corden as well - most notably budget Irish airline Ryanair.
This is everything you need to know.
Why was James Corden banned from Balthazar?
On social media, Balthazar owner Keith McNally wrote that he had “86’d Corden”, meaning that he had banned him from the restaurant.
On Instagram, McNally posted a picture of Corden’s face, along with a caption which described the star as a “hugely gifted comedian” but also “a tiny Cretin of a man”.
In full, McNally wrote: “James Corden is a Hugely gifted comedian, but a tiny Cretin of a man. And the most abusive customer to my Balthazar servers since the restaurant opened 25 years ago. I don’t often 86 a customer, to today I 86’d Corden. It did not make me laugh.
Here are two examples of the funny man’s treatment of my staff.
“MANAGER’S REPORT # 1:
“’In June, James Corden was here on table 61. (Although this is diabolical, it happens Very occasionally in all restaurants.) After eating his main course, Corden showed the hair to Balthazar manager G. who was very apologetic. Corden was extremely nasty to G, and said:
“Get us another round of drinks this second. And also take care of all of our drinks so far. This way I write any nasty reviews in yelp or anything like that."
“MANAGER’S REPORT # 2:
“’James Corden was at Balthazar with his wife on October 9th for brunch. He asked for a table outside. Brunch Maitre D’ Allie Wolters took the party to table 301. Mr. Corden’s wife ordered an egg yolk omelette with gruyere cheese and salad. A few minutes after they received the food, James called their server, M. K. and told her there was a little bit of egg white mixed with the egg yolk. M. K. informed the floor manager, G.
“The kitchen remade the dish but unfortunately sent it with home fries instead of salad. That’s when James Corden began yelling like crazy to the server: "You can’t do your job! You can’t do your job! Maybe I should go into the kitchen and cook the omelette myself!" M.K. was very apologetic and brought G. over to the table.
“He returned the dish, and after that, everything was fine. He gave them promo Champagne glasses to smooth things out. G. said that Corden was pleasant to him but nasty to the server.’ M.K. was very shaken, but professional that she is, continued to finish her shift.’”
Has he responded to Keith McNally?
Corden has said it was “never my intention” to upset staff at a New York restaurant but acknowledged he had been “ungracious”. The 44 year old addressed the incident during the latest episode of his talk show The Late Late Show, and said that in its aftermath he had been “walking around thinking that I haven’t done anything wrong”.
Corden said his comments had been “in the heat of the moment” but vowed he would “apologise in person” to the staff at Balthazar.
Speaking about McNally’s claims, he said: “Because I didn’t shout or scream, I didn’t get up out of my seat, I didn’t call anyone names or use derogatory language, I’ve been walking around thinking that I haven’t done anything wrong. But the truth is I have made a rude, rude comment. And it was wrong. It was an unnecessary comment, it was ungracious to the server.”
Corden said that after seeing McNally’s post he had “immediately” contacted him to “tell him how upset I was”.
“[I told him] how upset I was that anybody was hurt by anything that I had done and anything that I had said and we had a good talk,” he said.
“He appreciated the call. I was happy that we got to clear the air. And I felt like we dealt with it privately … but by this point, the story was out there and more people were upset.”
After showing a series of scathing tweets to his audience, he continued: “I get it. I totally understand. I understand everybody getting upset and I accept everybody’s opinion. I also hate, as I said to the owner that day, that I’ve ever upset anybody ever. It was never my intention. It just wasn’t. I love that restaurant. I love the staff there.
“I hope I’m allowed in again one day so when I’m back in New York I can go there and apologise in person, which is something I will absolutely do.”
Prior to acknowledging the incident on his show, McNally himself published an update on the situation on his Instagram account. He said that Corden had gotten in touch with him directly to apologise for his behaviour.
Sharing another picture of Corden’s face, McNally wrote: “James Corden just called me and apologized profusely. Having f**ked up myself more than most people, I strongly believe in second chances. So if James Corden lets me host his Late Late Show for 9 months, I’ll immediately rescind his ban from Balthazar.
“No, of course not. But....anyone magnanimous enough to apologize to a deadbeat layabout like me (and my staff) doesn’t deserve to be banned from anywhere. Especially Balthazar. So Come Back to the 5 & Dime, Jimmy Corden, Jimmy Corden. All is Forgiven. Xx”