Sunday Territorian

Special tribute to chef Zonfrillo

- Lisa Woolford

The season launch episode of MasterChef will air on Sunday without any changes following the shock death of chef and judge Jock Zonfrillo.

Production company Endemol Shine Australia has dropped the name of the 15th season “Secrets & Surprises”, with a tribute message honouring the life of Zonfrillo expected at the start – or end – of the episode.

Filming of the series was completed last month, with a winner already decided.

While there are no changes to the first episode, future episodes will be reviewed to ensure the utmost respect is given to Zonfrillo, who was found dead in a Melbourne hotel room on the eve of the competitio­n’s return last Monday.

In Monday night’s episode special guest chef Jamie Oliver is given an enormously warm welcome by Zonfrillo and his fellow judges Melissa Leong and Andy Allen, and feverpitch excitement from the new batch of 18 contestant­s.

Zonfrillo was his usual exuberant, knowledgea­ble and warm self as he sampled the talented home cooks’ “secret weapon” dishes, meting out high praise and compliment­s or gently letting down those who didn’t quite meet the bar.

There’s an array of amazing dishes inspired by cuisine from across the world, and the usual heartwarmi­ng backstorie­s.

Ahead of the show airing, Waleed Aly, Sarah Harris and Hamish McDonald will host The Sunday Project’s special tribute to the 46-year-old father of four, with details being kept tightly under wraps by Network Ten.

The Sunday Project, Sunday, 6.30pm, Ten

MasterChef Australia, Sunday – Thursday, 7.30pm Ten

 ?? ?? Jock Zonfrillo
Jock Zonfrillo

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