Has Bobby Flay declared the end to his time on Iron Chef Showdown?
According to a post written by Vanity Fair food writer Allen Salkin, the culinary master is walking away from the show.
During the filming of an episode of the live cooking competition this past summer, Flay reportedly tore off his apron in the middle of the battle to show off his shirt that read “THIS IS MY LAST IRON CHEF BATTLE EVER.” While the episode hasn’t aired yet, it’s likely the producers won’t be able to cut around his stunt, which Flay apparently knew, reportedly replying “That’s the point” when they confronted him about the situation.
Flay, who has several shows on the Food Network, likely won’t be leaving the company entirely, but has instead reportedly lacked interest, specifically, in appearing on Iron Chef, which he has competed on and off since 2000.
It’s also being reported that Flay skipped the annual Rooftop Iron Chef Showdown event at the New York City Wine and Food Festival a couple of weeks ago, but not because he wasn’t in town — he had dinner with Scarlett Johansson in the city that same weekend.
According to Salkin’s sources, there is now an ongoing discussion about whether or not to blur the message on Flay’s shirt when the episode airs. “That entire thing is in flux right now,” a source said. “Nothing has been decided or settled.”
PEOPLE has reached out to Food Network for comment but has yet to receive a response.
It is not known yet of the program will premiere as planned on Nov. 8 as the episode features chef John Besh, who resigned from his own company on Monday amid allegations that he enabled a culture of sexual harassment in his restaurants.
He was also accused of having a relationship with an employee which Besh said was consensual but has been working to “rebuild my marriage and come to terms with my reckless actions,” according to a statement.
“I also regret any harm this may have caused to my second family at the restaurant group, and sincerely apologize to anyone past and present who has worked for me who found my behavior as unacceptable as I do,” Besh, a James Beard-award winner said. “I alone am entirely responsible for my moral failings.”