MasterChef judge and celebrated chef Jock Zonfrillo died in Melbourne on Sunday at the age of 46.
Police are not treating the death as suspicious and will prepare a report for the coroner.
A Victoria Police spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia: ‘Police attended a Lygon Street address for a welfare check and located a man deceased about 2am on May 1.
‘The 46-year-old man’s death is not being treated as suspicious.’
Zonfrillo is survived by his third wife, Lauren Fried, and his four children: Ava and Sophia, from his first two marriages, and Alfie and Isla, with Fried.
He had previously opened up about his battle with obsessive compulsive disorder, anxiety and addiction to Daily Mail Australia in 2021.
MasterChef Australia judge Jock Zonfrillo died in Melbourne on Sunday at the age of 46, his family has confirmed
In 2021, he spoke out about his battle with anxiety and revealed he carried worry beads to help him cope
After battling with addiction, Jock said his past life experiences had accumulated, eventually leading to his anxiety diagnosis.
‘I never thought I would have anxiety, let alone admit to it,’ he said in 2021.
‘It’s a real working class problem to arrive somewhere and think that you’re not good enough,’ he confessed.
‘For me, I’ve done that my entire life. Every job I’ve got, I’ve felt like I wasn’t good enough to be there.’
Zonfrillo revealed he carried a set of worry beads to cope with his anxiety.
‘When I’m nervous or anxious, my brain would just start racing, like I’m thinking irrationally, so by using the worry beads, it calms that noise in my brain,’ he said.
‘I’ve got a set of worry beads on me all the time, so if they’re not in my hand, they’re in my pocket. I’ve made so many types, they’re kind of weirdly an accessory.
‘On MasterChef, I’ve got different colours for different suits that I wear. So it’s not a flashing beacon that says “I have a problem” or “I have anxiety”.’
Zonfrillo’s colleagues on MasterChef did not seem to know he had died as the publicity machine for the new season was in motion as late as 11:30am on Monday, when Leong posted a countdown clock for the premiere on her Instagram account.
In a statement his family said: ‘With completely shattered hearts and without knowing how we can possibly move through life without him, we are devastated to share that Jock passed away yesterday.’
‘So many words can describe him, so many stories can be told, but at this time we’re too overwhelmed to put them into words.
‘For those who crossed his path, became his mate, or were lucky enough to be his family, keep this proud Scot in your hearts when you have your next whisky.’
They continued: ‘We implore you to please let us grieve privately as we find a way to navigate through this, and find space on the other side to celebrate our irreplaceable husband, father, brother, son and friend.’
Zonfrillo is survived by his third wife, Lauren Fried, and his four children: Ava and Sophia, from his first two marriages, and Alfie and Isla, with Fried. (Zonfrillo with Fried and their two children are seen here in a recent family photo)
Channel Ten and production company Endemol Shine Australia said in a statement: ‘[We] are deeply shocked and saddened at the sudden loss of Jock Zonfrillo, a beloved member of the MasterChef Australia family.
‘Jock passed away in Melbourne yesterday. Jock was known to Australians as a chef, best-selling author, philanthropist and MasterChef judge but he will be best remembered as a loving father, husband, brother and son.
‘Determined and talented and with plenty of grit, Jock was born in Glasgow to an Italian father and a Scottish mother, which meant his formative years were heavily influenced by two strong cultures and it was his obsession with food and desire for a new pushbike that at just 12 years old fuelled Jock to knock on kitchen doors looking for a job.
Zonfrillo is seen kissing wife Lauren Fried on March 25, 2022
‘Jock’s love and passion for food saw him become one of the youngest culinary students to do an apprenticeship at The Turnberry Hotel at just 15 years of age. From that point onwards there was no holding him back and by 17 he was working alongside Marco Pierre White at his eponymous Restaurant Marco Pierre White.
‘Throughout his career he worked with world famous chefs and in restaurants all over the world. His talent saw him shine in the world’s most formidable kitchens and he opened Bistro Blackwood and Restaurant Orana in Adelaide after moving to Australia.
‘Jock’s Restaurant Orana was recognised with the coveted distinction of three hats in both 2019 and 2020 and he also received global accolades, accepting the prestigious Basque Culinary World Prize in 2018.
‘In 2019, Jock was named as a judge on MasterChef Australia in which he took great pride in challenging and coaching the contestants and of course inspiring a nation of home cooks.
‘Jock’s charisma, wicked sense of humour, generosity, passion and love for food and his family cannot be measured. He will be greatly missed.’
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