Glossy food magazine Delicious has been brutally criticized by chefs and their readers after it issued a ‘tepid’ apology for posting a rude comment about a waitress’s outfit.
In February, food critic John Lethlean wrote a review for Perth’s Shui restaurant that included the line: “The maitre d’/meet and welcomeer wears an outfit that threatens to expose more than his inexperience as he leans in to set a table. “.
Lethlean, who made a name for herself at The Australian and for calling out social media influencers for a free feed, was heavily criticized for the “sexist and kinky” review, which was soon deleted.
But it took Delicious nearly a month to publish an apology, and the post was criticized for using it as clickbait to drive people from its social media site to its full website.
Chef and author Christine Manfield called for an industry-wide boycott, writing “the bar is so low they roll in the mud, shame on you @deliciousaus.”
“Anyone with any integrity in the hospo (hospitality) industry should jump ship as soon as possible: disengage to save their credibility,” he added.
In February, food critic John Lethlean (pictured left) wrote in a restaurant review that “the maitre d’/Meet and Greer wears an outfit that threatens to expose more than his inexperience as he leans over to put a table”.
Lethlean was heavily criticized for the “sexist and kinky” review (pictured), which was soon removed from the website.
Delicious topped her sorry‘A note from the Delicious team’ and explained the steps the magazine had taken.
“When we realized the mistake we had made in posting the sentence, we removed the review and took steps to personally contact the restaurant and staff member and apologize to them directly,” they wrote.
“We have now been able to convey our apologies and apologize more fully for any offense you have caused.”
Celebrity chef Simon Toohey was upset by the way Delicious posted his apology. ‘
A link in the bio? Please click our link for more views please,” she wrote.
‘A delicious joke… It’s not right.’
Melbourne-based restaurateur Frankie Cox agreed, writing: “This is beyond offensive to the whole being of our industry.”
Wine expert Katrina Butler suggested that what Delicious said wasn’t really an apology.
‘You didn’t really address it, did you? Extremely weak. Watch us all cut ties now,’ she said.
There have been calls to boycott Delicious, including this one from chef and author Christine Manfield.
Melbourne-based restaurateur Frankie Cox was also appalled by the way Delicious has handled the situation (pictured)
Celebrity chef Simon Toohey was upset (pictured) at how Delicious posted his apology
After the initial story went viral, legendary Perth chef Colin Wood led the backlash against Lethlean and Delicious with a scathing post.
“How this rude “review” got printed after multiple eyes on it, appearing online on Delicious and here before being removed without an acknowledgment, consequence or apology it’s more cooked than some of the steaks you’ve grilled,” Wood wrote while sharing a photo of Lethlean saying ‘it’s time for a change’.
Food author Dani Valent said that what Lethlean wrote was “sexist, disrespectful and perverted”.
Another commenter wrote that “you’re in an industry where women are already subjected to sexual harassment and assault all the time.”
Food website Delicious is coming under fire from top chefs, including calls for a boycott, following its lukewarm apology for posting a crude comment about a ‘leaning’ Shui restaurant worker in revealing attire. In the image, a photo of Shui’s food and wine.
Food author Dani Valent (right) was among those who admonished the online critic for his rude depiction of a restaurant worker.
‘Look in the mirror and see for yourself. Women in hospitality and women everywhere deserve an apology.
Several posters on Delicious’s Instagram page asked if Lethlean was going to apologize for her original review.
In a since-deleted social media post, Lethlean wrote: ‘I didn’t apologize. Delicious it did.
Daily Mail Australia has contacted Delicious editor Kerrie McCallum and John Lethlean for comment.