MasterChef Australia: Why Did Gary Mehigan Left The Show?

Renowned judge from the final season of MasterChef Australia, Gary Mehigan, has made his way to India for the filming of National Geographic India’s captivating show, ‘Mega Festival.’ During his time in this vibrant South Asian country, Mehigan opened up about his decision to bid farewell to the immensely popular cooking competition back in 2019. The culinary maestro shared elaborate details about his experiences as a MasterChef judge and the factors that influenced his departure.

Gary Mehigan

In an interview with Indian Express, the award-winning chef revealed that he parted ways with “MasterChef Australia” due to its increasingly professional nature. Mehigan nostalgically recalled the early seasons when some of the home cooks were less focused on competitiveness and more interested in pursuing a career in the culinary arts.

With a twinkle in his eye, Mehigan expressed, “I still cherish the concept of an honest home cook, someone who adores their craft and pours their heart into the flavors they create. Even if their creations are delightfully simple, when executed with finesse, they can rival the finest restaurant fare.” He continued, “I don’t believe the show is striving for that essence anymore.”

When questioned about his departure, Mehigan chuckled, exclaiming, “That gig had run its course!” He later confessed that it had consumed the majority of his time. “We graced the television screens from our studios for over a decade and 16 seasons, including spin-offs. I once asked the director at Channel 10 about the show’s longevity, and he estimated another decade!” Mehigan’s eyes widened in surprise, realizing he wasn’t up for another ten-year commitment.

A former colleague of the esteemed judge revealed, “Honestly, I made a promise to my family that I would only continue if I genuinely loved it, not just because it was expected of me. My wife warned me against coming home only to complain about the monotony. So, early on, I made a pact with myself that if I ever lost that spark, it was time to move on.” Mehigan shared that after his contract expired, Channel 10 seemed eager to spin it into a tale of a “greedy judge.”

In 2019, the culinary world was shaken when all three original judges of MasterChef Australia, including Matt Preston, Gary Mehigan, and the embattled George Calombaris, announced their departure after an incredible eleven-year run. The show’s CEO, Paul Anderson, cited financial matters as the driving force behind their decision. Anderson explained at the time, “The truth is, we couldn’t meet the demands of the three judges,” as reported by The Guardian.

In an official statement, Anderson expressed gratitude, saying, “We extend our heartfelt appreciation to Gary, George, and Matt for their invaluable contributions over the past 11 years,” before eagerly stating, “We can’t wait to introduce a fresh ensemble and the next generation of exceptional judges in the upcoming twelfth season of MasterChef Australia.”

Further disclosing details to Ten News, Anderson revealed, “We’ve been engaged in negotiations with the trio for several months, so this is not solely about George.”

Leave a comment