‘MasterChef Australia’ judge Melissa Leong has announced her separation from husband Joe Jones. 

Sharing the news with her Instagram followers on Sunday evening, the food writer said the couple have chosen to “part ways” after eloping in 2017.

“It has brought us such happiness to walk together, but the time has come for Joe and I to part ways and walk on, apart,” Melissa wrote. 

“We ask for your kindness and consideration for our privacy, we will not be making any further comment as our private lives have, and will always remain exactly that. 

“We wish you peace at the end of such a challenging year for all.” 

Melissa is ’MasterChef Australia’s first female judge, joining the cooking show this year alongside fellow new judges Jock Zonfrillo and Andy Allen. 

She first met Joe at his Melbourne bar, Romeo Lane, before meeting again at a function 18 months later and hitting it off. 

They got engaged after just three months of dating, before tying the knot two months later. 

“I planned our elopement in between takes while filming another TV show [SBS’s The Chef’s Line],” she previously told TV Week. 

“When that wrapped, we went to Joshua Tree in California and eloped. It was all very fun.”

Back in April Melissa thanked Joe for appearing in an episode of ‘MasterChef Australia: Back To Win’.

“Shout outs to my awfully hot husbando @joeyromeolane for being a legend and agreeing to be on @masterchefau with me tonight,” she wrote on Instagram at the time.

“Not only is he a classically French trained chef with a specialist focus in pastry, he’s also an award winning bartender and bar owner (@romeolane) and one of the best things to ever happen to me. Thanks bubba. The end.”

Don Arnold via Getty Images

‘MasterChef Australia’ judges Jock Zonfrillo, Melissa Leong and Andy Allen arrive ahead of the 2020 AACTA Awards presented by Foxtel at The Star on November 30, 2020 in Sydney, Australia.