Yesterday we posted the Forbes 10 Highest Earning Chefs list. We did note that Jamie Oliver wasn’t on the list. Oliver’s net worth was calculated at almost $250 million in a Sunday Times article in April. That’s some substantial money. Turns out we’re not the only ones who are calling bull shenanigans. Andrew Zimmern took to his blog today to call bullshit as well. We’d say Zimmern has some first-hand knowledge on restaurants and food matters. “In terms of true income the list is way off base.”
The way Forbes calculated chefs income are vague at best. Forbes’ Dorothy Pomerantz described the methodology:
“We looked at each chef’s cut of the revenue from his or her restaurants and things like TV pay, merchandise royalties and cookbook payments. We did not deduct for taxes or the cost of being a celebrity chef.”
Zimmern counters that claim on his blog:
Some of the chefs on the list make waaaaay more than what is listed, and I can think of several chefs off the top of my head who aren’t on the list at all who have better months than the number 10 chef (Guy Fieri at 8 million) has years. Mario at number 5? Ever seen the checkout line at Eataly? Correct answer to that question is which location? Their math is way off base. Keller, Boulud, Colicchio . . . I could go on and on . . . lots of chefs who keep these matters private are doing very well, and I imagine some of the bozos on the list love to see their name up there. It’s nauseating.