Celebrity Chef Fined $1.3 Million for Metal Wire in Dish

Daniel Boulud’s hefty fine serves as a warning to the restaurant industry
db Bistro Moderne

db Bistro Moderne

The New York City restaurant has no explanation as to how the wire ended up in the meal.

Retired lawyer Barry Brett received more than he bargained for when he was served a piece of wire from a metal cleaning brush in his $32 plate of coq au vin in February 2015 at db Bistro Moderne, the Midtown restaurant in New York City owned by top celebrity chef Daniel Boulud.

Brett was awarded $300,000 in damages for injuries to his esophagus after swallowing the 1-inch bristle, and the restaurant received an additional $1 million penalty for the use of cheap metal brushes near food, the New York Post reported. The hefty fine serves as a warning, not only to Boulud, but also to the rest of the food industry, of the potential dangers of metal wire brushes in restaurant kitchens.

The Centers for Disease Control issued a warning in 2012 about a wire brush made in China being used in commercial kitchens, which was presented during the four-day trial by Brett’s attorney.

The jurors said they were shocked that such a high-profile, Michelin-starred chef had no preventative measures for incidents such as these, the Post reported.

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The restaurant’s lawyer said he planned to appeal the verdict.