After completing his culinary training in UK’s Royal Navy, Robert Irvine became one of the few to be selected to work aboard Her Majesty's Royal Yacht ‘Britannia’.
Post his duty onboard the royal yacht, he worked as a consultant in Bali and Ho Chi Minh City.
He further served as executive chef aboard many cruise ships and hotels like the MS Crystal Harmony and Trump Taj Mahal (now Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City).
In 2005, he participated in ‘Children Uniting Nations’ charity’s fundraising dinner for the ‘77th Academy Awards’. At the following year award ceremony, he was their head chef.
In 2007, his television career began as a host with the Food Network show ‘Dinner: Impossible’ wherein, he took up a cooking challenge in each episode and completed it within a stipulated time frame.
He hosted the first four seasons of the show (2007-2008) after which he was replaced by Chef Michael Symon when it came to light that his resume was embellished and inaccurate.
In 2007, Robert Irvine appeared in a special episode of ‘Iron Chef America’ wherein he teamed up with Tyler Florence for a dessert battle against Paula Deen and Cat Cora. His team lost the battle.
He also appeared as a guest judge in an episode of ‘The Next Food Network Star’.
He returned to host the sixth season of ‘Dinner: Impossible’ in April 2009 and continued to work in its seventh and eighth season as well.
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Following the end of ‘Dinner: Impossible’, he hosted the second season of ‘Worst Cooks in America’ in 2011.
He also began hosting another series called ‘Restaurant: Impossible’. In each of its episode, he had the task of renovating an American restaurant within two days with a budget of $10,000. The first 13 seasons of the show aired from 2011 to 2016.
In October 2011, he participated as a contestant in the fourth season of ‘The Next Iron Chef’; however, he was eliminated very soon.
In 2011, he once again appeared in an episode ‘Battle Deep Freeze’ of the show ‘Iron Chef America’. His team with Chef Cat Cora lost out to Iron Chef Michael Symon and Chef Anne Burrell.
Between 2011 and 2016, he penned a number of recipe columns for ‘Muscle & Fitness’ magazine.
Between 2012 and 2016, Irvine introduced a variety of healthy food products including FITCRUNCH protein bars (2013). In 2015, he launched ‘Robert Irvine Foods’ that focuses on nutritious line of food products, spices and oils.
In 2013, he anchored ‘Restaurant Express’, a series in which nine chefs went through various tests. The winner had a chance to open a restaurant in Las Vegas.
In 2013, he went to Afghanistan as part of ‘Honoring Our Troops Tour’ and organised a Meals Ready to Eat (MRE) competition.
The following year, he established ‘The Robert Irvine Foundation’ to honor the veterans of military and support their causes that need help.
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In 2016, he guided Natasha Clement to win the grand prize of tv show ‘All-Star Academy’.
In May 2016, he launched a free digital publication ‘Robert Irvine Magazine’ which primarily focuses on healthy recipes, expert’s fitness advice and life advice/success tips from celebrities.
In September 2016, he appeared as a talk show host in ‘The Robert Irvine Show’. The show premiered on CW Television network and ran for two seasons (around 180 episodes) till 2018.
In 2016, he also opened his first restaurant ‘Fresh Kitchen by Robert Irvine’ at the Pentagon in Washington, DC. He opened another branch in Allentown in 2019.
In 2017, he opened another restaurant ‘Robert Irvine's Public House’ in collaboration with Tropicana Las Vegas resort.
In 2017, he became a co-owner of Boardroom Spirits.
In 2019-2020, ‘Restaurant: Impossible’ returned with three more seasons along with two seasons of another companion series ‘Restaurant: Impossible: Revisited’. In this series, Robert pays a visit to the restaurants he has previously renovated and talks to the owners regarding their progress.
He has authored four books - ‘Mission: Cook’ (2007), ‘Impossible to Easy’ (2010), ‘Fit Fuel: A Chef’s Guide to Eating Well, Getting Fit, (2)and Living Your Best Life’ (2015) and ‘Family Table’ (2018).
The television series ‘Dinner: Impossible’ and ‘Restaurant: Impossible’ with Robert Irvine as their host, have been huge successes with the former running for eight seasons and the latter having completed sixteen seasons till March 2020.
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He has also lent his support to the men and women of the military extensively. ‘The Robert Irvine Foundation’ backs these veterans and their causes.
A part of proceeds from the sales at ‘Robert Irvine Foods’ goes as a contribution to the foundation’s grant programme. In past, the foundation has awarded grants to the USO, Valor Service Dogs, the Gary Sinise Foundation, and the American Veterans Center.
He was also the first chef to open a restaurant at the Pentagon.
Awards & Achievements
Robert Irvine has received numerous recognitions for his cooking skills. These include ‘Ambassador of the Culinary Institute of America’ (2007), ‘Chef Professional from La Toque Blanche International’ and ‘Trustee of the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences’ Five-Star Diamond Award’.
Apart from these, he is also a member of ‘Malta Chefs Society’ (MCS) and has won the 2001 Culinary Excellence Award given by the ‘Culinary Institute of America and the American Tasting Institute’. An episode of the show ‘Restaurant: Impossible’ also made its way to ‘Culinary Hall of Fame’.
He has also been acknowledged for his passionate support to military. In 2015, the US Navy named him Honorary Chief Petty Officer and he was also given Bob Hope Award for Excellence in Entertainment and Support of Our Service Members by the ‘Congressional Medal of Honor Society’.
He became a recipient of ‘US Department of the Army Outstanding Civilian Service Award’, ‘Spirit of Hope Award’ and ‘ASYMCA Angel of Honor Award’ in 2016, 2017 and 2018 respectively.