MasterChef Australia judge George Calombaris has apologised to staff of his Melbourne restaurants after they were underpaid almost $2.6 million.
In a statement issued Monday, MAdE Establishment, the company founded by the high-profile chef, conceded that 162 of its 430 staff had been underpaid an average of $16,000 each.
The business has since acted to pay the $2.6 million owed to affected staff.
The bungle, which stretched back to 2011, also saw nearly half of the employees overpaid their base salary.
Calombaris said he has been left "devastated" by the error.