Chef Judd Grisanti no longer with Ronnie Grisanti’s restaurant

Chef Judd Grisanti is no longer with Ronnie Grisanti’s restaurant.

His last day in the restaurant was Dec. 3.

Grisanti said leaving the restaurant — named in honor of his father — permanently was not what he wanted. He left due to illness in the early fall and returned briefly in November, but he left a few weeks later due to his ongoing health concerns. He has struggled with health issues for several years.

Grisanti now plans to file a lawsuit against Tuscany South LLL, which owns Ronnie Grisanti’s. He made the announcement on a Facebook post on Friday.

“Yesterday when the restaurant did not acknowledge the fifth anniversary of his (his father Ronnie Grisanti) passing, I knew then it was nothing but about greed and money,” he told The Commercial Appeal. “I am not giving up my father’s name and legacy when I stood by him in the kitchen for 55 years.”

Chef Judd Grisanti is no longer with Ronnie Grisanti's restaurant.

He said in May he was offered a separation agreement by Tuscany South LLC, the terms of which he did not agree with.

Randi Belisomo, Ronnie Grisanti’s executive manager, said the restaurant had no choice but to terminate the relationship, citing Grisanti’s long absences during the restaurant’s three-plus years of operations.

“Dino Grisanti, Randy Fishman and my late father, Nick, started this business in 2018 to honor the legacy of Ronnie Grisanti and to provide a prime opportunity for Ronnie’s son, Judd — their brother and friend — to thrive as a chef,” Belisomo said. “Despite many challenges, this restaurant has thrived amid a rich local culinary scene for the past four years. We would not be where we are were it not for our family of employees — Judd included — who have made the hospitality happen here at 6150 Poplar .”

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