A top London celebrity chef has been pictured at work with black eyes, days after he was reportedly caught up in a bar room brawl defending his daughter.
Michelin-starred Jason Atherton was allegedly attacked in a bar in the Philippines on December 23.
Atherton was eating at the F Cafe and Bar with his family when his daughter allegedly complained that a group of men harassed her outside the restroom in Cebu province.
The award-winning chef, 51, whose flagship restaurant Pollen Street Social in Soho gained a Michelin star in 2011 reportedly confronted them and asked them to apologise.
But a fight broke out during the conftonation in the early hours of the morning at around 1am local time, according to reports.
Gwendolyn Garcia, the governor of Cebu took to facebook to claim that Atherton was with his wife Irha, a Cebuana, and their daughter in the restaurant.
Atherton allegedly went up to a group of men who were supposedly harassing his daughter, according to her account.
She wrote: “These guys were HARASSING his DAUGHTER, while she was waiting in line for the restroom. JASON asked them to APOLOGIZE, as any FATHER who LOVES his DAUGHTER would,” Garcia said.
“Instead, they all ganged up on him.”
She also alleged that the staff of the bar, including the bouncers, aggravated the fight instead of helping the customer.
But F Cafe and Bar has released an official statement, “strongly denying” allegations that their security and one of their managers joined in the attack.
The statment said: “We strongly deny these allegations. A melee ensued and the natural reaction of security was to go between the parties to ensure that nobody got hurt and to pacify them. The manager, who just had an eye operation, also went to ensure that security was on top of the situation.”
The management said that their staff did not physically assault Atherton.
The chef’s flagship restaurant Pollen Street Social gained a Michelin in its opening year. He was the Executive Chef at Gordon Ramsay‘s Michelin starred Maze in London until 30 April 2010. In 2014 he co-hosted the Sky Living TV series My Kitchen Rules.