Page Six reports that thrice-wed Bobby Flay—extra virgin? yeah, right!—has been accused of carrying on a three-year-long affair with his assistant, Elyse Tirrell. A close friend says Flay’s estranged wife learned of the affair shortly after Thanksgiving. Flay filed for divorce earlier this month.
Maia Madison, a friend of Flay’s wife Stephanie March, told Page Six that Flay had been sleeping with Tirrell, a singer and actress who had worked as a hostess at one of Flay’s restaurants in 2008, for the past three years.
“Elyse had always seemed so nervous when Stephanie came to one of the restaurants, and Stephanie, not knowing what was happening, went out of her way to compliment her and try to make her more comfortable,” Madison said. “Elyse had even been to Stephanie’s home when she was there — and when she wasn’t.”
“Now this girl is about to become the Monica Lewinsky of the food world.”
Flay spokeswoman Julie Halpin neither confirmed nor denied the affair. “We will continue to refrain from responding to the continued efforts by certain parties to spread rumors and innuendo,” she said in a statement. “This specific allegation was in a letter sent from one attorney in this case to the other. It was written and then leaked specifically to try to insert this story into the press, and that’s unfortunate.”
“Even more unfortunate is that all of this is being done in order to renegotiate a prenuptial agreement that was agreed to over a decade ago and never amended during the marriage.”
Laurence Kretchmer, a friend and business partner of Flay’s, denied the affair more explicitly. “Elyse is a great and valued employee and it is awful to see her dragged into this thing. If she had an affair with Bobby it would have been reported to me,” he told Page Six. “None of this has any basis in reality.’’