If you are a fan of good food – which we bet you are – then, you are likely to know Food Network star, chef, and restauranteur, Bobby Flay. Flay’s flair for the culinary arts began to bud at an unusually early stage in his life. At age eight, he requested a toy oven from his dad as a Christmas gift. So, those who knew him from childhood are not likely to be surprised to see his eventual success in the cooking and baking sector. After being an employee in a number of restaurants for years, he has become the owner of several eating centers in the USA – from New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey and all the way to Las Vegas.
However, it appears that Flay has not been half as successful in his romance life as he has been in his career. So, here, we are bringing the celebrity chef’s murky romantic history to the fore. In particular, we will endeavor to find out the reason behind his streak of divorces.
The Story Behind Each of The Chef’s Three Marriages
In case you don’t know this already, Bobby Flay has been a husband – legally – for three separate times in his life. Here is a quick overview of each of his marriages:
His First Marriage Was to A Fellow Pro Chef Debra Ponzek
The wedding between Bobby Flay and Ms. Ponzek held in May 1991. But they called it quits two years later in 1993 in spite of the fact that it seemed they had a lot in common. After all, they were both celebrated chefs and they were both New Yorkers too.
The duo had met in June 1990 while Flay was still working with a restaurant named Miracle Grill. According to Flay, he fell for her for two reasons: One, he liked her style of cooking, and two, he fell for her looks. So, he approached her and they became friends who shared professional interests. As the relationship developed, it turned into a romantic affair.
Bobby Flay’s Second Wife Kate Connelly Was Also A Cooking Enthusiast
After the end of his first marriage in 1993, Bobby remained single for several months before she met the person that would eventually become his second wife. Her name is Kate Connelly. A TV host, Kate is known for hosting a famous Food Network program dubbed Robin Leach Talking Food which aired until 1995 which incidentally was when the marriage between her and Flay was solemnized.
As could be anyone’s guess, it was on an occasion where Connelly had Bobby Flay as a guest on her program that the sparks of love began to develop between them. Although we can’t yet tell exactly when their first meeting happened, we know they eventually became a couple. Also, we know that their union resulted in the birth of Flay’s only kid so far – Sophie Flay – who was born on April 16, 1996, in New York. The girl took after her father in her love for cooking. After making her first TV appearance alongside her dad at the age of 17 on The Rachael Ray Show, she has grown to co-host a Food Network show entitled The Flay List with her father. She also works as a community journalist with ABC-7 in Los Angeles.
Bobby Flay’s second wife Kate loved to cook from early in life. But her cooking experience was limited to her home. She also loved to be a TV presenter. So, instead of being a chef, she decided to indulge both passions by presenting a food-themed TV show after graduating with a degree in journalism from Massachusetts College.
Bobby Flay’s Third Was Also His Longest (and craziest) Marriage
In his third marital experience, Bobby Flay decided to go with someone who had a completely different career background from him in the person of the actress Stephanie March in 2005. Ironically, that became the longest of his three marriages. They were together for 10 years before the union collapsed. That was in 2015 just when we hoped that the chef’s experience in his previous two marriages had taught him how to weather every marital storm.
Meanwhile, Bobby Flay’s beautiful third wife Stephanie Caroline March is an actress as we earlier mentioned. She is most remembered for her role as the New York Assistant District Attorney ‘Alexandra Cabot’ in the NBC long-running crime-drama series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.
Reasons Why Bobby Flay’s Marriages Never Lasted
About why Bobby’s first marriage failed, no one seems to know. But we found out that the signs had been there from day one but it’s either the two celebrity chefs chose to ignore them or they didn’t quite realize how problematic those signs were going to get.
The signs that were there from the beginning – as observed by Flay’s fellow chef Andrew Wilkinson (of the Rainbow Room) – was that time management between the couple was going to be an issue since chefs often stay long hours at their places of work. According to Wilkinson who surprisingly made this observation on the day that Bobby Flay wedded Debra Ponzek, it was probably the reason why it wasn’t common to have chef couples.
Wilkinson wondered how Flay and Ponzek were going to cope with the situation. As if that was prophetic, the couple soon went their separate ways as already explained. We believe that the point Wilkinson observed must have played a major role in the eventual divorce that, more than anything else, proved that you needed a different grace to grill up barbecue than you need to stay happily married.
As for Bobby Flay’s second marriage, apart from the fact that it was the only one that resulted in a kid, it was the least eventful. There were no accusations and counter-accusations drama around it. All that was cited was irreconcilable differences. And, given how they agreed to take the joint responsibility of Sophie their daughter, it seems obvious that their divorce was amicable. Sophie has been a source of continuing friendship between her parents. And, of course, Sophie is now all grown up and would do everything to keep them friendly.
If the reasons why Bobby Flay’s first and second marriages failed are yet not quite clear, then, maybe, his third divorce provided some clues, being the most dramatic of the three divorces that so far characterize the pro chef’s love life. First, let’s make it clear that it was Flay who filed for divorce.
Shortly after Flay approached the registry to have the marriage ended, Stephanie began to go on air to accuse him of having cheated on her. In divorce documents, Stephanie March alleged that the renowned chef had three known affairs during their 10-year marriage, one of which was with American actress and model, January Jones.
According to March, in the early months of 2010, Bobby slept with January many times in different places including the London hotel in Los Angeles. The Law And Order: SVU star also claimed that Bobby cheated on her with a singer/actress named Elyse Tirrell, who worked as a hostess at his Bar Americain in Midtown in 2008 before becoming his assistant.
Stephanie March also mentioned that Bobby Flay showed no concern when she had appendicitis and that his coldness towards her – a sign of infidelity on Flay’s part, March seemed to say – was clear enough when he deserted their 10th wedding anniversary.
The above are the reasons given by Stephanie March for why her relationship with Flay could no longer hold. However, since it was Flay who first approached the registry regarding the nullification of the union, there’s no way we can tell if her accusations are truthful or plain vengeful. If on the other hand they are truthful, then, we can say those are possible added clues to why the chef’s earlier marriages could not hold.
This Is What We Know About His Love Life Since His Last Divorce
The accusations of infidelity laid on Bobby by his third wife Stephanie may have gotten some strong backing. It actually seems the pro chef is a women’s man. Not long after he finalized his divorce from Stephanie March, precisely in February 2016, Bobby started a relationship with actress Helene Yorke and the spark between both of them has not grown dim ever since.
Unlike Bobby who’s been divorced thrice, the actress who is 20 years younger than her chef boyfriend has never been married. Bobby Flay’s adorable actress girlfriend Yorke is a Canadian-born American. Apart from being an actress, she is also a singer as well as a dancer. Her acting credits span theater, TV, and films.