Celebrity chef and Food Network icon Michael Chiarello died Friday after suffering an allergic reaction that led to anaphylactic shock, according to his restaurant group. He was 61.
“We deeply mourn the loss of our beloved patriarch Michael,” Chiarello’s family said in a statement obtained by The Wrap. “His culinary brilliance, boundless creativity, and unwavering commitment to family were at the core of his being. He brought people together through the joy of shared meals, fostering lasting memories around the table.”
The Post reached out to Chiarello’s reps for comment.
Born on Jan. 26, 1962, Chiarello hosted shows on PBS and the Food Network, as well as appeared on “Top Chef,” “Top Chef Masters” and “The Next Iron Chef.”
He earned a Daytime Emmy in 2005 for Outstanding Service Show Host for Food Network’s “Easy Entertaining with Michael Chiarello.”
He died surrounded by family and friends at the Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa, California.
The Gruppo Chiarello restaurant group issued a statement remembering the California native’s “passion for food.”
“Chef Michael Chiarello’s passion for food and life will forever be etched in our kitchens and our hearts,” read the statement. “While we mourn Michael’s passing, we also celebrate his legacy that continues with his restaurants, Bottega, Coqueta (San Francisco and Napa Valley), and Ottimo.”
Known for Italian-influenced California cuisine, Chiarello was honored as 1985’s Chef of the Year by Food & Wine Magazine.
He opened his first restaurant, Tra Vigne, in the Napa Valley in 1987.
He hosted “Season by Season” on PBS and “NapaStyle” on the Fine Living Network.
He placed second on the first season of “Top Chef Masters” in 2009 and third on the “super chefs” edition of “The Next Iron Chef” in 2011.
He was a guest judge on “Top Chef” in 2009 and on “Chopped” in 2016.
He wrote several cookbooks, including “Bottega: Bold Italian Flavors from the Heart of California’s Wine Country,” “At Home with Michael Chiarello: Easy Entertaining,” and “Michael Chiarello’s Casual Cooking.”
In 2016, Chiarello was accused of sexual harassment by two former servers.
They alleged Chiarello once compared martinis to breasts and told managers to hire only those they found sexually attractive.
At the time, a Chiarello rep called the allegations unfounded and said the chef would vigorously defend himself.
Chiarello settled the lawsuit out of court in 2017.
Several fans of his took to X (formerly Twitter) to express their dismay at the chef’s unexpected passing.
“A very sad day for me personally and the culinary world,” posted celebrity chef Robert Irvine. “My thoughts and Prayers go out to family and teammates… RIP my Dear friend you will be sorely missed.”
“Very sad to hear one of my favorite chefs, Michael Chiarello has died,” tweeted a second user. “He had a severe allergic reaction last week. Allergic reactions are not benign.”
“Michael Chiarello passed away. God that sucks,” mourned a third person. “He was one of the first chefs I looked up to when I first started cooking 20 years ago. Seemed like such a cool guy. Awful stuff.”
Chiarello is survived by his ex-wife, Eileen Gordon, who married Chiarello in 2003 before he filed for divorce in 2019, and his four children, Aidan, Margaux, Felicia and Giana.