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My Kitchen Rules judge Manu opens up living with depression

My Kitchen Rules judge Manu opens up living with depression

On-screen, he’s the judge with the ready laugh and cheerful grin who never fails to extract a smile even as he critiques the contestants on My Kitchen Rules.

However, in February 2014, Manu Feildel admits a very different man was to be found off screen after he “lost everything” when his Sydney restaurant, Manu At L’étoile, closed.

That was exacerbated when, just five months later, he faced the closure of Le Grand Cirque &, his joint venture in Melbourne with MasterChef Australia judge George Calombaris.

“It was tough,” the French-born chef, 43, reveals. “I lost my pride, my money and went through a stage of depression for a couple of months.”

Were it not for the support of his family and friends, including MKR co-host Pete Evans, Manu says he’s not sure he would have bounced back from those dark days.

“I got back on track because of my friends, family and the job I have now,” he says of the role MKR also played in his recovery.

“I don’t have time for worrying anymore – what’s the point? It’s better to smile and be happy than to struggle for something that might work.”

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