clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Art Collector Leaves $50K Each to His Favorite Waitresses at Donohue's Steak House

Robert Ellsworth didn't even know the waitresses's full names.


When famed Asian art collector Robert Ellsworth died last summer, he left one giant final tip for his two favorite waitresses at the Upper East Side classic Donohue's Steak House, where he had been a regular for decades. Ellsworth didn't even know the waitresses's full names when he left them $50,000 a piece. In his will, he called them "Maureen at Donohue's" and "Maureen-at-Donohue's Niece Maureen." Maureen is actually Maureen Donohue-Peters, whose father opened the steakhouse, and her niece is named Maureen Barrie. Ellsworth was a true regular: "Out of eight meals, he ate seven here. We were his dining room," Donohue-Peters told the Post.

The waitresses aren't the only people Ellsworth left part of his $200 million fortune to — in fact they got a relatively small piece of the pie compared to other people in his life. Ten million was left to his live-in chef and friend Masahiro Hashiguchi, and $100,000 to each member of his household staff. Pieces from his extensive art collection are headed to the Met, NYU, Harvard, and Yale.

Donohue's Steak House

845 Lexington Avenue, Manhattan, NY 10065 (212) 744-0938

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Eater New York newsletter

The freshest news from the local food world