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Geoffrey Zakarian on Why He Backed Out of Donald Trump’s DC Hotel

It’s simple, really

Geoffrey Zakarian working a cooking demonstration.
Geoffrey Zakarian.
Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for NYCWFF

Once upon a time, celebrity chef Geoffrey Zakarian was going to open a restaurant in Donald Trump’s new Washington, DC hotel. Alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Countless words regarding the Zakarian-Trump split have been published online, in print, and in court documents, but the chef has now been kind enough to break it down in simple terms for the Village Voice.

"I'm going to D.C. to look at two spaces, because my buddy Donald, he fucked up," Zakarian explained to the Voice on Monday. "He opened his fucking mouth."

Well, that settles that. Zakarian is referring to the Republican presidential nominee’s disparaging remarks about Mexican immigrants, of course. Trump referred to Mexican-Americans as “rapists” and “drug dealers” in June 2015, which promptly resulted in Zakarian pulling out of the ex-reality television host’s DC hotel.

Trump sued for breach of contract; Zakarian countersued. It’s been a mess. José Andrés, another celebrity chef who had plans to open a restaurant in that same Trump hotel, is currently going through the same process.

While Zakarian’s relationship with Trump has soured, it sounds like he isn’t giving up on DC. Further details on the chef’s search for a new space in the city were not immediately available. Eater has reached out for more information.

Why Geoffrey Zakarian Yanked His Restaurant From Trump's Hotel: 'My Buddy Donald, He Fucked Up’ [VV]
The Real Costs of Donald Trump’s Anti-Mexican Slur Controversy, Explained [Vox]
Donald Trump's Statements Cause Backlash for D.C.'s Trump Hotel [EDC]