Now Chris Kimball’s Ex-Wife Is Suing Him
While Christopher Kimball remains embroiled in a trademark suit with a Boston business owner, and a messy divorce from the media empire he helped build, he now faces a third lawsuit. Adrienne Kimball alleges the former face of America’s Test Kitchen—her ex-husband—violated the terms of their divorce agreement by abruptly leaving the company, and also that he is not paying adequate support for their three children.
In a suit filed last week in the Suffolk Probate and Family Court, Adrienne Kimball says her ex-husband owes her more than $112,000, according to documents obtained by the Boston Globe.
She has an 8 percent ownership stake in America’s Test Kitchen, and is promised 35 percent of Kimball’s gross income and overall compensation, per the ex-couple’s 2012 divorce agreement. Documents outline about $97,893 owed to her in royalties, rental income, and other money Kimball has taken in since 2013. Adrienne Kimball also says Kimball’s sudden departure from ATK in 2015 caused payments to minority partners, like herself, to “dramatically reduce,” the Globe reports.
Kimball has also supposedly “failed or refused” to meet his end of the bargain that calls for him to contribute 50 percent toward tuition and medical costs for their kids. The suit lists $14,729 owed to Adrienne in that arena.
Scott Lashway, lawyer for Christopher Kimball, did not comment to the Globe, and he has not yet returned a call from Boston this morning.
In the early 1990s, Kimball cofounded the company that would become America’s Test Kitchen in Brookline, and was the prominent face of its many brands, including Cook’s Illustrated magazine and the eponymous public television show. He left in November 2015—amicably, he said at the time. Kimball now says he was fired after ATK instated a new management structure, including its first-ever CEO, while ATK says the board tried to keep Kimball involved but he ultimately refused, after secretly pilfering company secrets to build a new media company.
Kimball is now married to a fellow former ATK staffer, Melissa Baldino, who is also part of Milk Street. The new company launched a magazine, radio show, and cooking classes last fall. Filming for a fall 2017 TV show debut is underway, and books are in production.
America’s Test Kitchen filed its lawsuit against Kimball in October.
“This case is not about too many cooks in the kitchen. This is illegitimate competition that started under our roof while Kimball was being paid by ATK and ATK was being assured by Kimball he would continue in his role,” the company said.
Another pending suit against Kimball alleges trademark infringement. The owner of Milk Street Cafe, Marc Epstein, is suing for copyright infringement.