The chef is widely known for the programs “Eat It Now!”, “Battle of the Chefs” and “Hell’s Kitchen”. In 2019, the restaurateur even received a TEFI for the entertainment show On the Knives. However, in the last couple of years, viewers have been discussing the personal life of Konstantin Ivlev more than his talents in the field of cooking.
The scandal erupted at the end of February 2020, when Maria Ivleva filed for divorce from her famous husband. The woman initiated the breakup after learning about her husband’s two-month affair on the side: “well-wishers” sent her a video from a date of lovers in a restaurant. Maria complained that Konstantin exchanged her for a “cheap escort from Taman.”
However, the chef had a different opinion: firstly, Lera Kudenkova, a 28-year-old journalism student at Moscow State University, became his chosen one, and secondly, according to the chef, no one took him away from the family. How did Konstantin Ivlev manage to cope with an acute situation and reunite with his young lover? On January 12, the restaurateur turns 48, and it’s time to remember all the fried facts of his biography.
Until the age of seven, Konstantin lived non-stop in Moscow, and after his father was sent to work in Prague, so the family began to celebrate holidays in Europe. Ivlev recalled that on New Year’s Eve the table was always bursting with an abundance of food, so no one in the house ate the classic appetizer for the inhabitants of the USSR – sprats – on the eve of the celebration.
As a teenager, Konstantin returned to Russia with his relatives. At school, the young man did not study well, so he did not see the point in going to high school. But the guy loved to help his mother in the kitchen, from which the idea of entering a culinary college was born. Within the walls of the vocational school, the student met Yuri Rozhkov, with whom he worked closely in the future.
Soon Ivlev was drafted into the army, and he ended up in military unit 83240 in the Moscow region. “The first months it was hard to get used to the dining room, grumbling that everything was inedible. We were given barley porridge, stew, apple juice from iron cans … And then he himself got into the outfit in the kitchen and proved to his colleagues that the army menu can be appetizing, ”Konstantin shared with StarHit.
After demobilization, Ivlev took up his career closely: from the institute’s canteen, he moved on to work in European-class restaurants on Rublyovka. The chef became a chef at 24, when he got a job in the capital’s Reporter. At the same time, Konstantin continued to develop in the profession, studying at schools in France, Sweden and Spain.
TV show star
In 2000, our hero won three awards at once at the Russian Culinary Championship. After another 10 years, the man concluded that he was ready to share his experience, and opened the Ask the Chef school together with Yuri Rozhkov. Then the programs “Ask the Chef” and “Eat It Immediately!” appeared, and the love for author’s cuisine and the ability to think through the design of projects helped Chef Ivlev in the restaurant business.
Widespread popularity covered the chef six years ago, when his collaboration with the Friday! TV channel started: the programs On the Knives, Hell’s Kitchen, Battle of the Chefs, and then Masha and the Chef became hits. “I have two main areas of activity: shooting the program“ On Knives ”and gala dinners that I spend in different cities,” Konstantin explained the other day. “I love rediscovering the country I was born in when it was very different.”
The show “On the Knives” had both fans and haters: often the waiters and chefs from the episodes seemed strange, so the audience assumed that there was a “decree”. Ivlev concluded that, along with fools and roads, a third misfortune appeared in Russia – freaks.
“Trust me, Knives Out is an absolutely true reality show,” the chef assured. – The people we show, for some reason, stopped reading books, studying. They think that opening a restaurant is very easy, and then they face huge problems. We find heroes by casting. The program is not just about cooking, we are interested in some social stories. The cafe owner divorces his wife, the waiter stole, the bartender inherited. I have a lot of experience in leadership positions, so I calmly react to people who behave differently from what we are used to in an adequate world. They even began to write to me: “Ivlev, you have become more tender.” Don’t be softer! Of course, there are moments when you want to break the interlocutor, but I am well brought up.
In addition to filming on TV, Ivlev publishes author’s cookery books that are in demand. “We have six books in the works, in 2022 we will publish one very large encyclopedia of modern new folk Russian cuisine. In general, over the past 20 years I have already published 40 books in collaboration with my friends, chefs and partners – however, they are nowhere to be found now, they are all sold out, ”the chef clarified.
Against the background of the recent scandal, the love story of Ivlev and his first wife was forgotten, but Konstantin and Maria met quite romantically: the girl caught a ride, and the cook gave her a ride. Before meeting with the blonde, the culinary experienced a painful separation, so then it seemed that fate gave him a second chance for happiness.
From the first conversation, Ivlev concluded that he had a woman with whom he should spend his whole life, although, in fact, he did not know Mary at all. Intuition and love led to a modest wedding in 1997: Konstantin did not want a holiday with a bunch of people, in which the bride fully supported him.
In 2001, the first-born of the couple, Matvey, was born, and in 2014, daughter Masha was born. Both children got in touch with the field of activity of the star father: the girl led the Masha and Chef program with her dad, but Ivlev’s son learned the basics of the restaurant and hotel business, and then switched to developing branded merchandise in Konstantin’s company. The chef’s heir is also interested in fashion design and music.
A few years ago, Ivlev mentioned that after 20 years of marriage, the feelings of first love and mutual respect for each other only grew stronger. However, in March 2020, Maria made it clear that not everything was going smoothly in the family: the blonde filed for divorce due to the betrayal of 46-year-old Konstantin with 28-year-old Lera Kudenkova.
“The children are in shock, his mom and dad are crying,” Maria confessed. – Nightmare for everyone! In general, he is not behaving like a man now: he hides money, wants to take his daughter Masha. I filed for alimony, we will draw up a lawsuit with a lawyer. Konstantin is a traitor to me. Drooled and snot wiped her husband when he was 23 years old, and this is how he repaid me?
The cook accidentally ran into a journalist from Taman in the market: the girl was trying cherries, and Ivlev caught himself thinking that he could not take his eyes off the brunette. At the same time, Konstantin fundamentally disagreed with the position of Maria: the boss firmly stated that no one had taken him away from the family, just in the last four years the marriage was rapidly collapsing.
“I have a lot of work: shooting, restaurants. I was not at home often – and when I came, I want to relax, scratch my turnips, eat chips, and they start telling you some stories. You ask: “Let me reboot.” But she bit me. And you begin to understand: I’d rather go to the shooting than stay at home, ”Ivlev recalled in the Once Upon a Time … program on NTV.
Last year, Konstantin literally persuaded himself to stay with his wife for the sake of common children, but in the end he offered to leave. Ivlev considered Maria’s conversations with the media a mistake: they say, she said in her hearts, he did not plan to take his daughter and did not betray anyone.
Wedding with a young sweetheart
The story was rapidly gaining momentum: Ivlev bought a house, moved in with Leroy, and on the third day in a new place made an offer to his beloved. “It was a rush of the soul, I realized that this is my man. Thinking about how to once again give flowers, a gift, I decided, why not give a ring as well, ”the TV presenter reasoned.
The age difference did not bother the couple: Ivlev felt young, but Lera turned out to be a fairly mature and wise girl. The lovers tried to ignore the comments of the haters about the misalliance, emphasizing that only they themselves know how the love story developed from the inside.
After the wedding, the rumble of condemnation subsided, because it became clear to the fans that for Ivlev it was not just about an affair or a midlife crisis. The picture was supplemented by the news about Lera’s pregnancy. “Matthew found out earlier and accepted with joy. He is a well-mannered young man with correctly set priorities and wishes me and Lera happiness and health. And Marusya, as it happened, was the last of her relatives to know. When it became known that there would be more of us, my daughter went to rest. So I just called her and said: “You will fly in and I will tell you very good news.” And so it happened. Of course, she was delighted, ”Ivlev emphasized.
From the attention of the fans did not hide how Konstantin was transformed next to his young wife. Lera goes in for sports and monitors proper nutrition, which she taught her husband to do, so Ivlev has already lost 30 kilograms and intends to keep fit. Contrary to gossip, the couple are happy together. “We have a great relationship, there will be a child, this is what I dreamed of since childhood, my ideal picture of the world,” says Valeria about her family.