Did Ted Allen just out his fellow Food Network star Anne Burrell?
After Patterson noted that she "love[d] it when Anne Burrell is on the show primarily because I have the biggest crush on her...whether or not she's a lesbian, I don't care," Allen said that he'd recently met Burrell's girlfriend.
"I’m not going to put a label on Anne, but she is dating a woman right now," Allen, who reportedly went on to explain that the woman in question works at Chicago eatery Avec, is quoted as saying. "She was really cool. You’ve got some competition."
Burrell is beloved by foodie audiences as the host of the Food Network series "Secrets of a Restaurant Chef." Her sexuality has been the subject of ample speculation in recent years, though she has remained mum about her personal life.
Though the Food Network courts a sizable lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) audience, none of its major star chefs have publicly come out -- a fact which has apparently not gone unnoticed by its creators. Featured "Iron Chef" star Cat Cora, who also serves as host of "Around The World In 80 Plates" on Bravo, is openly gay -- but does not have cooking show of her own on the Food Network.
"We're always looking to broaden the diversity of our hosts, and we work hard to find talent that has the expertise, charisma, and broad appeal necessary to work on our air," Bob Tuschman, general manager and senior vice president of the Food Network, one of several gay high-level executives employed by Scripps, told Out magazine last year.
Take a look at other celebrities who've faced rumors about their sexuality below: