Chef Mark Peel says he has parted ways with Campanile LAX, which is set to open in November in Terminal 4 at Los Angeles International Airport, after a disagreement with his partners, including his former father-in-law. Now the chef who co-founded and helmed the original Campanile will no longer be affiliated with what's described as a reproduction of his landmark restaurant.
[Updated: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that Mark Peel said he resigned.]
And in a turn of circumstances, Peel's former wife and Campanile co-founder Nancy Silverton, will consult on the project.
"It comes down to a difference in vision between myself and other partners," Peel said. "I felt it was going to need a lot more support than they do. I’m going on and doing other things, and they’re supporting it in the way they feel will work out best.
"The project is continuing, and I absolutely wish them all the best."
Larry Silverton, a Campanile board member and Nancy's father, said, "Our differences were with financial matters. ... Nancy is coming on now." He added that David Rosoff, general manager of Osteria Mozza, and consulting chef Chris Kidder also would contribute to the project. Chris Eddy, chef de cuisine under Peel, remains on the Campanile LAX staff.
Campanile on La Brea Avenue closed in November 2012, 23 years after Peel and then-wife Nancy Silverton opened it in a building Charlie Chaplin once owned. Silverton, who also co-founded La Brea Bakery there, had left Campanile in 2004 and opened Pizzeria Mozza and Osteria Mozza with partners Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich.
The LAX restaurant was announced in 2011 in a licensing agreement with airport food service company HMS Host, and construction started at the beginning of this year. Peel had said he would oversee the menu and train and direct staff who would execute the cooking. Campanile LAX is expected to be as close to a fine-dining experience as one might get in an airport terminal (in the same spot where a Chili's once stood).
HMS Host didn't respond to an inquiry about Peel's exit. "I have nothing but good things to say about Host. They’ve been very, very supportive and great to work with," Peel said.
Meanwhile, Peel continues to head his consulting company, Orange and Blue.