Giuseppe's Latest Crime: $513 for Dinner

cityfile · 01/21/09 09:18AM

It's been nothing but bad news for Giuseppe Cipriani these past few months and the family will face off in court against Rainbow Room landlord Tishman Speyer later this month. One person who probably won't be putting in a good word with the judge: Bloomberg food critic Ryan Sutton, who is so outraged by his recent "crummy three-course dinner for two" that cost $513 ($621 when you factor in the drinks) that he says that "the Ciprianis should be banished from the Rainbow Room." Also? "They should apologize for desecrating one of Manhattan's great sky-high vistas with sky-high prices for airline food. [Bloomberg]

More Cipriani Drama, New 'Man Candy' for Paris

cityfile · 01/20/09 06:48AM

Giuseppe Cipriani hasn't been seen in New York for months, but he says that has nothing to do with the handful of investigations now underway, or because he's banned from the US. He's just "busy" and says he'll return to New York "soon." His son Ignazio has been busy, too. The 20-year-old has been charged with third-degree assault for beating up a limo driver outside 1OAK back in December. [NYP, R&M]
• The latest man to fall into Paris Hilton's clutches: She was was spotted at Sundance making out with MySpace CEO Chris DeWolfe. [P6, NYDN]
• Prince William's girlfriend, Kate Middleton, may be planning to move to New York to take a job in fashion, thanks to advice she received from Tom Ford and Anna Wintour. [Daily Express]
• Maureen Dowd threw a big party on Sunday eve to honor of David Geffen. In attendance: Tom Hanks, Jeff Zucker, David Katzenberg, Ron Howard, and George Stephanopoulos, who knocked over a tray of martinis and left the party red-faced. [P6]

Eating & Drinking: Monday Edition

cityfile · 01/12/09 02:29PM

• More trouble for the Ciprianis: The family's Rainbow Room lease has been terminated by Tishman Speyer for failing to pay millions in back rent. [NYT]
• The latest recessionary byproduct: restaurants are getting robbed. [Eater]
Noah Tepperberg has won approval to open a new lounge in Chelsea. [NYP]
Adam Platt gives John Dory two stars in this week's New York, subtracting points for a "slightly uneven" menu and "overamped" atmosphere. [NYM]
Ron Perelman, Jon Bon Jovi and Larry Gagosian purchased the lease for the Blue Parrot in East Hampton and now plan to re-open it in May. [Page Six]
Tom Colicchio and Craft executive chef Damon Wise are launching a new Friday night menu consisting of dishes and drinks under $10. [GS]
• Want to sample some deadly blowfish? You're in luck! [GS]

Eating & Drinking: Thursday Edition

cityfile · 01/08/09 02:54PM

• The restaurant formerly known as Grayz reopens as Atria tonight. [NYT]
Bobby Flay is launching a talk radio show on Sirius XM. [AP]
• The latest blow to Giuseppe Cipriani? He's having credit problems. [Eater]
• Here's a great deal: On Friday night, you can watch Babette's Feast and then eat Babette's feast. Just $6,000 a couple! [GS]
• If cash is tight, head over to SideBAR on Saturday night without any pants on and you'll get a free drink. The humiliation you'll experience is free, too. [NYB]
• Devin Tavern on Greenwich Street has officially closed. [Eater]
• For shame: Unless he gets his act together, George W. Bush will become the first U.S. President since FDR who has not dined at the '21' Club. [P6, HuffPo]

Did Giuseppe Cipriani Flee the Country?

cityfile · 12/10/08 07:25AM

♦ Haven't seen Giuseppe Cipriani around town lately? There may be a reason for that: He's believed to be outside the U.S. since he's on probation and because Andrew Cuomo is investigating how the family managed to keep its liquor license earlier this year. [P6]
♦ Angelina Jolie has been undergoing secret fertility treatments in the hopes of becoming pregnant with twins within the next two years. At least that's what Star says. [Star]
♦ Everyone on Gossip Girl may be hooking up with each other, but at least one relationship isn't going so strong: Blake Lively was spotted making out with a guy who was not Penn Badgley. [E!, P6]
♦ Leonardo DiCaprio lost his wallet at Rolf's on Third Avenue, and Tom Cruise lost his Blackberry somewhere in Toronto. [P6, P6]

Momofuku Ssäm Gains, Delicatessen Loses

cityfile · 12/03/08 02:53PM

David Chang's Momofuku Ssäm has earned itself an upgrade. Frank Bruni gave it three stars in today's Times, saying the food there makes him feel "unencumbered, honest and joyful." [NYT]
♦ The most despised restaurant of 2008? That would be Delicatessen. [NYO]
♦ Justin Bogle is replacing Christopher Lee as executive chef at Gilt. [GS]
♦ Macao Trading Co. is planning to add a lounge and downstairs bar. [Eater]
♦ The Ciprianis are pushing for landmark status for the Rainbow Room. [NYO]
♦ Pink Elephant co-founder Shawn Kolodny is departing the club. [DBTH]
♦ If you pick up dinner at one of the outposts of Saigon Grill and it looks emptier than usual, there's a good reason for that: The owner and his wife were arrested today for falsifying records and tampering with evidence. [NYP]

Deep Inside The Box, More Controversy for the Ciprianis

cityfile · 11/24/08 02:28PM

New York takes a long look in this week's issue at The Box, Simon Hammerstein's infamously sleazy club. Don't read it if you're eating or you're easily offended by tales of snot and/or raw sewage. [NYM]
♦ Fresh trouble for the Cipriani family: The head of the State Liquor Authority, Daniel Boyle, says an aide to Governor Paterson tried to "intimidate" him into renewing the family's liquor licenses. [NYP]
♦ Opening this week: Macao Trading Co., brought to you by the team behind Employees Only; Carroll Gardens' Buttermilk Channel; and Perle on Pearl Street. [NYM]
♦ The Observer has put up its list of top 10 new bars. [NYO]

Cipriani Walks the Plank and Survives

cityfile · 08/06/08 02:04PM

The New York Post's Steve Cuozzo has never been much of a fan of Arrigo and Giuseppe Cipriani's restaurant empire—he once described Giuseppe as "Public Enemy No. 1"—but he stuck up for them this morning, railing against the Liquor Authority for threatening to yank the restaurateurs' precious license. Cuozzo argued that taking away their license would cost 1,000 employees their jobs and leave several iconic venues empty for the foreseeable future. His argument seemed reasonable enough. And apparently it was pretty convincing to the State Liquor Authority, too: They voted today to allow the Ciprianis to hold on to their license in exchange for paying a $500,000 fine. Commissioner Jeanique Green, who cast the group's deciding vote, said she made her decision out of concern for Cipriani employees. Sound familiar? Someone is going to enjoy (or suffer through) a complimentary dinner at the Cipriani venue of his choice in the near future!

A Guide to NYC's Celebrity-Owned Bars and Restaurants

cityfile · 08/05/08 01:01PM

There's probably been a time or two when you've been tempted to check out a restaurant or bar simply because some celebrity supposedly "owns" it. Maybe I'll see Justin Timberlake devouring a plate of ribs at Southern Hospitality! Or I'll spot Robert De Niro slurping on some pasta at Ago! Restaurateurs know this, too, of course, which is why they're all so eager to attach a celebrity name—any one will do!—to their ill-conceived bistro, brasserie, speakeasy, lounge, or barbecue shack. We don't want to be the ones to crush your dreams and tell you that there's no chance you'll see these famous faces at these venues. Just in case you're the more optimistic type—or just curious who has a stake in what—we happily introduce the Cityfile celebrity-owned restaurant/bar map!

On Tonight's Menu: Sexual Harassment

cityfile · 07/02/08 09:37AM

Today the Times details the pervy nightmare endured by Martha Nyakim Gatkuoth, a 25-year-old former hostess at Tavern on the Green and the lead complainant in a federal discrimination lawsuit against the restaurant that was settled last month for $2.2 million. Among the indignities Gatkuoth says she had to put up with: regular boob and butt-grabbings by the restaurant's director of operations; docked pay when she refused to perform sexual favors on said director; and frequent racial epithets (she's an Ethiopian immigrant). Of course, restaurants have long had a rep as ridiculously brutal places to work—see Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential or Bill Buford's Heat—but the proliferation of suits also has some (like, uh, the restaurateurs who are getting sued) wondering if it's all part of a shakedown to extract cash. (Presumably, a multi-million dollar settlement is cushier than collecting 18% tips every night for the next decade; when you factor in having to deal with the press—and lawyers!—perhaps not so much.) A sampling of sexual harassment suits at high-profile restaurants—including both the absolutely horrific and not-so-serious—below.

Giuseppe Cipriani

cityfile · 01/25/08 11:29PM

A rakish restaurateur and budding real estate tycoon, Cipriani manages a handful of restaurants, hotels and condos in town. He's also on probation for tax fraud.

Giuseppe Cipriani Has Been A Bad Socialista

Joshua Stein · 07/31/07 03:30PM

The Cipriani family is like the Medici clan of New York restaurants; they rule over an empire stretching from the Rainbow Room to the eponymous Cipriani. But like, say, Piero di Lorenzo de' Medici, some Ciprianis are bad apples. Says the AP: "New York City restaurateur Giuseppe Cipriani and his father pleaded guilty Tuesday to evading $10 million in state and city taxes." That's a lotta meatball! Giuseppe the younger is a principal investor in Cuban-themed boite du jour Socialista. And in that context as well, his corruption makes sense!