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Celeb Chef -- Too Busy for 'Make-A-Wish' Kid

3/25/2011 3:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

The Make-a-Wish Foundation had to break some bad news to a 6-year-old cancer patient this week ... when Food Network star Ina Garten informed them she was too busy to cook a meal with the boy ... TMZ has learned.

Ina Garten Enzo

A family member involved with the Make-A-Wish foundation tells us ... a little boy named Enzo was approached by the organization after he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia three years ago.

Enzo told Make-A-Wish ... he really wanted to cook with the "Barefoot Contessa" host because he would often watch the show with his mother while resting in bed.

M.A.W. approached Garten with the wish last year ... but at the time, she was unable to meet with Enzo due to a book tour.  The organization urged Enzo to pick another wish, but he told them he wanted to wait until she becomes available.

We're told the organization went back to Ina this year ... but her team responded with a "definite no" ... once again, citing scheduling conflicts. 

A member of Enzo's family says the 6-year-old is heartbroken ... and asked parents, "Why doesn't she want to meet me?"

When we called Make-A-Wish for comment on this story, they told us, "From time to time, planning for wishes doesn't turn out as originally envisioned, despite people’s best intentions and efforts throughout the wish-granting process."

They noted that Ina is a "good friend" of the foundation.

A rep for Garten tells us, "Despite her demanding schedule, [Ina] participates and helps as many organizations as she can throughout the year, helping children and adults like Enzo with life threatening and compromising illnesses.

The rep continues, "Unfortunately, as much as she would like to, it's absolutely impossible for her to grant every request she receives."

We're told Enzo has now made a new wish -- he wants to swim with dolphins ... and he's already taking lessons to make his dream come true.


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...and THIS, will forever be her legacy. I hope she's okay with that. What a bitch.

1317 days ago


My daughter had a Make A Wish wish granted three years ago, and met Zac Efron. If a then very much in demand 20 year old guy can take 10 minutes out of his day to meet a sick child, why can't she?

And for #13, pray you never have a sick child.

1317 days ago

shawn f.    

Rarely do I read something that enrages me enough to take the time to comment on it..... but the nerve this lady must have to outright turn down a six year old cancer patient not once but twice?! I mean in all honesty with a HUGE benefit of the doubt maybe the first time there really was scheduling conflicts that may have been contractual...... but twice?! I hope this bitch loses her show cause her food is ****ty anyway.

1317 days ago


Anyone, no matter how busy, could take a few hours out of their day and grant this little boys wish. Nothing lower than breaking a childs heart, sick or healthy. I bet she does regret her decision now.

1317 days ago


She's not Gordan Ramsey . . . just some cable TV cook who puts out a book here in there. Her books are not that big of a sellers. She should have been honored this little boy even knew who she was, much less wanted to met her. Probably asked to met her for his mother, how unselfish was that. Tell you what she will be selling a whole lot less books after this. The really great chefs who have network shows, restaurants and top selling books would have been there for the boy. But this D-list cook is too busy eating to give a dying child an hour of her time.

1317 days ago


And just WTF have YOU done for cancer kids, TMZ? Go shovel the crap in front of your own door, before complaining about the smell on someone else's front yard.

1317 days ago


Jennifer Garner wanted to be a guest on her show but she told her "no, she only has friends on her cooking show." I'm not surprised that she would turn down the Make-A-Wish not once, but twice.

1317 days ago


I'm guessing that this is not a simple matter of Ida not wanting to help, rather it is genuinely conflicting scheduling or a personal issue. I would hope that Ida made this short affair a priority, but it seems like her team is saying that it won't happen. Perhaps MAWF could have flown the kid to Ida to help make the dream come true. Even now that he's pick a swim with dolphins wish, Ida could still call and talk to him. Either way, I agree with an earlier commenter that I'd want the facts before passing judgement. I also wish the best for the little boy!

1317 days ago

anna e.montiel dub    

she ain't no damn barefoot contessa she's a barefoot bitch she ain't that good of a cook i can't believe she would denied a sick child some extra time out of her busy schedule hope one day she realizes that there are other things more important in life then not having time to grant a sick child a life wish.

1317 days ago


WHAT A DUMB BITCH!!! No matter WHAT, she could and should have made time.

1317 days ago


I have to think Ina's handlers are doing this because it's terribly out of character for this woman! Perhaps she doesn't know about it. She will now....

She's very kind woman.

1317 days ago


Yup, being there to sign autographs in the books you're selling is of the utmost importance in life. You know... life... that thing that is longer for some, but shorter for others. Yeah, it sure is.

1317 days ago


I can't conceive that a person is too busy to cook a meal for a child, I don't care who you or your people think you are or how much you do for charity. Ina Garten you should be ashamed of yourself, so ashamed you quit your Food Network gig so you have "time" to cook a meal - a wish from a child fighting the battle of their lives! What is wrong with people??

1317 days ago


I think that Australian bully kid can rest easy now. The world has stopped turning on him and focused on someone more rotten.

1317 days ago


Visiting sick kids doesn't pay the rent.

And the sick kid learned a lesson.. you don't get all you wish in life, even if you have cancer.

Posted at 12:56 AM on Mar 25, 2011 by Cartman


There goes Cartman, always giving everybody that warm and fuzzy feeling.

1317 days ago
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