Guy Fieri tells "Today" that the Times critic wanted to go after a "celebrity chef who is not a New Yorker"
Guy Fieri is hitting back at the New York Times critic who slammed his Times Square restaurant in an excoriating review this week.
During an appearance Thursday on NBC's "Today," the platinum maned Food Network star said Times critic Pete Wells had an "agenda."
"Great way to make a name for yourself, go after a celebrity chef that’s not a New Yorker," Fieri told "Today"s' Savannah Guthrie.
"I thought it was ridiculous," he added.
Wells' critical take-down went viral Wednesday thanks to its savaging of Fieri's Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar and choice one-liners.
"Why is one of the few things on your menu that can be eaten without fear or regret — a lunch-only sandwich of chopped soy-glazed pork with coleslaw and cucumbers — called a Roasted Pork Bahn Mi, when it resembles that item about as much as you resemble Emily Dickinson?," Wells wrote at one point.
He accused the restaurant of drowning everything in sauces, skimping on croutons and serving soggy french fries, in addition to crimes against decor and good taste.
Of the service, he wrote, "The well-meaning staff seems to realize that this is not a real restaurant."
Fieri did admit to Guthrie that the restaurant is still trying to improve certain aspects after opening in a former Heartland Brewery two months ago.
"Is it perfect right now now? No. Are we striving for that? Yeah," Fieri said.
Fieri's effervescence and insatiable quest to find great greasy spoons has made him a beloved figure on television as the host of "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives," while alienating him from the restaurant elite. Some viewed Wells' skewering as a case of snobbery, while others hailed it as a critical master-work.