James Corden breaks silence on allegations of abusive behavior at New York restaurant: ‘It was ungracious’

Late-night host James Corden opened up Monday night about recent drama surrounding his alleged abusive behavior at a New York City restaurant, saying he “deeply regrets” making a rude comment to a server.

The “Late Late Show” host began his Monday show by acknowledging why he was silent about the drama for nearly a week, saying he tends to avoid addressing rumors.

“I like to adopt, you know, quite a British attitude of sort of, you know, keep calm and carry on. Things are going to get written about me,” Corden explained. “‘Never complain, never explain’ is very much my motto. But as my dad pointed out to me on Saturday, he said, ‘Son, well you did complain, so you might need to explain.’”

Last week, restaurateur Keith McNally banned the comedian from his upscale New York City restaurant, Balthazar. McNally detailed reports from his staff claiming Corden verbally abused a sever and made a fuss about the food they served him.


McNally called the comedian a “tiny Cretin of a man” and said he was the “most abusive customer” his Balthazar servers have encountered in 25 years.

McNally said in one ugly incident, Corden “yell[ed] like crazy” at a server because his wife’s egg yolk omelette had egg white in it and when it was brought back to the table after being fixed it was paired with home fries instead of a salad.

McNally said Corden apologized “profusely” after the post got media attention, which prompted him to reverse the ban. But things took a turn when Corden claimed he did nothing wrong “on any level” to the New York Times shortly after.

“Should we not all be a little grown up about this?” Corden asked the reporter. “I promise you, ask around this restaurant. They don’t know about this. Maybe 15% of people.” McNally called for Corden to “own up” to his behavior in another Instagram post.

But the comedian reflected on his behavior during a four-and-a-half minute monologue Monday night, explaining that his wife Julia Carey was served food that she was allergic to. He also said that one incident was recent, but another happened in 2014.


“As her meal came wrong to the table the third time, in the heat of the moment, I made a sarcastic, rude comment about cooking it myself. And it is a comment I deeply regret,” the “Cats” actor said.

“I understand the difficulties of being a server. I worked shifts at restaurants for years,” Corden detailed. “I have such respect and I value anyone that does such a job, and the team of that restaurant are so great.”

Corden also lightened up the mood by joking about critics hating his “Carpool Karaoke” segment and others being shocked that he was married to a woman.

“The restaurant manager and the server, they were lovely, they were lovely. They brought out full glasses of champagne as an apology, but we were like, ‘That’s not necessary. We don’t need it.’ We’d had a great time. Even for me, it was too early to start drinking,” Corden joked.

But the comedian explained that, because his behavior was not violent or vulgar, he did not realize that he was in the wrong.

“Because I didn’t shout or scream, like I didn’t get up out of my seat, I didn’t call anyone names or used derogatory language, I’ve been walking around thinking that I hadn’t done anything wrong,” Corden reflected. “But the truth is… I made a rude, rude comment and it was wrong. It was an unnecessary comment. It was ungracious to the server.”

Corden wrapped up his monologue by acknowledging that he “had a good talk” with McNally over the incident, but did not acknowledge the New York Times interview. He repeatedly said how much he loved Balthazar’s staff and “accept[s] everybody’s opinion” on the situation.

“I hope I’m allowed in again one day, so when I’m back in New York, I can go there and apologize in person, which is something I will absolutely do,” Corden concluded.

On Monday’s “Late Late Show,” host James Corden addressed accusations of rudeness at Keith McNally’s restaurant Balthazar, acknowledging that it was “wrong” to be rude to a server.

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