Eric Ripert told the Washington Post that he suspended executive chef Leonardo Marino and a sous-chef or two from his Westend Bistro at the D.C. Ritz last week for "behavior problems." Ooh, could this be a scandal? Alas, no one’s going on record about the naughty conduct. The reporter does refer to the crew as boys being boys, and a "boys club," and the hotel is going so far as to launch an internal investigation. So, you know. For the sake of the gentle chef behind Avec Eric, we hope any resulting reports aren’t as upsetting as the explicit sexual-abuse accusations an ex-waitress brought against Megu in 2006.
Whatever the story, Marino, despite having his talent acknowledged by Ripert, won’t be returning post-suspension: He told the Post he resigned. But diners in our great capital need not despair: A sous-chef from Le Bernardin is swooping in for backup. Better Great French food is on the way!