The moral of the story: don’t stage outlandish threats unless you’re prepared to take account for them.
In the case of Michelin starred chef Gualtiero Marchesi, hailed as the father of “la nuova cucina Italiana”, it would have been assumed the seasoned 78-year-old had kept retribution in mind when he attacked the Michelin guide authors for stripping him of a star last June with threats of “giving back” his remaining single star.
As it turns out Mr. Marchesi wasn’t. Not only did the Michelin take him at his word by removing his final star, they took his word, his star, his name and his restaurant right out of the guide, leaving Marchesi infuriated and perplexed.
A spokesperson for Michelin said: “When, as in this case, a restaurant does not wish to be judged or appear in the guides we take it out and it simply goes into the telephone book.”
Ristorante di Erbusco, the restaurant at the center of controversy, opened in Milan in 1993 and had the distinction of gaining Marchesi his third Michelin star.
“Faced with a case of lese-majesty, the Red Guide has responded with a beheading. I regard it as an out-and-out attack on Italian cuisine and its symbols,” said Marchesi in response of the latest outcome.
Unfortunately for the Italian chef it appears that the Michelin guide will retain the last word in this argument.