Interview by Lori Bizzoco. Written by Shannon Seibert.

Fans recognize Jesse Kovacs from season five of The Bachelorette, where he fought for Jillian Harris’s heart, and season one of Bachelor Pad, where he caused drama with ex-girlfriend Elizabeth Kitt. Now, he is standing at another rose ceremony, waiting to see if he will get a rose on Bachelor in Paradise tonight. “It’s funny because, during this rose ceremony, I was sick as hell. I don’t think they show it, but I was off in the jungle puking my brains out,” Kovacs tells us in our celebrity interview. “So I wasn’t even concerned about getting a rose.”

Related Link:  Former ‘Bachelor Pad’ Exes Elizabeth Kitt and Jesse Kovacs Offer Advice on Dating and Love

Jesse Kovacs Talks About Return to Reality TV for Bachelor in Paradise

Arriving in Tulum, Mexico this week, his first date was with Jackie Parr (Sean Lowe’s season). He knew nothing about the format of the show; he did, however, know that it was worth it if finding relationship and love was a possibility. “It’s all about the experience for me,” he shares. “If you’re open-minded, you can meet someone anywhere. It doesn’t matter if it’s on reality TV or if you’re in the coffee shop, at a bar, or at the post office.”

What wasn’t aired is that Robert Graham pulled him aside and gave him a brief rundown of the situation. “I did know that Marquel and Jackie went on a date but still felt confident that she would want to go on a date,” he confirms. He also says that everyone was super nice and inclusive. “Graham Bunn and I pretty much hung out the entire time,” he adds.

When the winemaker first got to the island, he had three or four days of date after date after date and then a rose ceremony, leaving him with little free time to get to know any of the guys except for his roommates. “I’m talking with the guys in my hut as if I were talking to any of my buddies about a girl I was seeing, totally not realizing that there were microphones in the ceiling,” he reveals. “Certain things were relayed back to the girls — and of course, guy talk isn’t always meant to be shared.”

Related Link: ‘Bachelorette’ Star Marcus Grodd Is Engaged to ‘Bachelor in Paradise’ Costar

Teasing his storyline further, he admits that something happens that leads to tension between him and one of the guys. Plus, he gets mixed up in a big misunderstanding that causes him to head home early. “That will all come out later,” he assures us. He says that he looked like the bad guy, although he was telling the truth about what happened.

Despite everything, Kovacs doesn’t have any regrets and speaks highly of his experience. “It is what it is. Realistically, I should’ve known better.” Given he walked into a similar storm between AshLee and Clare, we had to get his opinion on the situation with the ladies. “I definitely feel like AshLee is always concerned about how she will be portrayed,” the reality TV star says. “Her edit or cut was the most important thing to her. I noticed this right away.”

His Recent Relationship and Love Life

He may not have found a relationship and love on Bachelor in Paradise, but we do know is that he had a serious girlfriend since viewers last saw him on Bachelor Pad. “She was in San Diego, and I was living in Los Angeles. We spent every weekend together — we’d go to the beach, and I’d bring a bottle of wine,” he candidly shares. “We moved in together, started a business, and then split up seven months ago.”

Outside of the show, Kovacs tells us that he isn’t looking to settle down again anytime soon. Instead, he’s staying busy with his entrepreneurial endeavors. He recently opened a lounge called Liquid in downtown San Diego, and he’s still managing Kovacs Brothers Wine with his brother. “We have some wine that we’re probably going to release in early September, and then we’re going to be harvesting again,” he says of what’s next.

You can keep up with Jesse on Twitter @JesseAKovacs. Be sure to tune into Bachelor in Paradise on ABC on Mondays at 8/7c!