Thomas Keller Responds to New York Times Review with Apology Letter

After a less than favorable review in the New York Times, Per Se’s chef and owner has promised to “do better for our guests”
Thomas Keller Responds to Per Se Review

Ovidiu Hrubaru /

“We are not content resting on what we did,” Keller wrote in a letter posted to Per Se’s website.

After New York Times restaurant critic downgraded Thomas Keller’s flagship restaurant Per Se from four stars to two, and described the disappointing four-hour dinner as a “slow creep of mediocrity and missed cues,” the chef has responded with a public apology letter.

“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.”