Thomas Keller has today issued an apology for failing to meet the high standards he and his team are committed to providing to their guests at his New York restaurant Per Se.
The apology comes after New York Times food critic Pete Wells panned the three-Michelin-starred restaurant in a review earlier this month, awarding Per Se just two out of five stars.
In some of his most acerbic comments Wells declared Per Se’s tasting menu “among the worst food deals in New York”; compared a mushroom broth to “bong water”; called overcooked lobster “gristle of the sea”; and pronounced the waiting staff as “oddly unaccommodating”.
Here’s Keller’s response:
To our Guests:
At all of our restaurants, in our kitchens and dining rooms, we make every effort to provide you with the best possible experience. We consider it our professional responsibility to ensure that every one of you feels special and cared for. To us, it is imperative that we improve and evolve every day. We constantly examine ourselves, our menu, our service and our standards.
Regretfully, there are times when we do not meet those standards. The fact that The New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells’ dining experiences at Per Se did not live up to his expectations and to ours is greatly disappointing to me and to my team. We pride ourselves on maintaining the highest standards, but we make mistakes along the way. We are sorry we let you down.
We are not content resting on what we did yesterday. We believe we can do better for ourselves, our profession and most importantly our guests. We have the opportunity, the tools, the self-motivation and the dedication to do so.
When we fall short, we work even harder. We are confident that the next time you visit Per Se or any of our other restaurants, our team will deliver a most memorable experience.
— Thomas Keller, Chef / Proprietor