In a surprise move, Charlie Trotter announced on New Year's Eve that he would close his eponymous groundbreaking restaurant in August this year, 25 years after opening, according to the Sun-Times.
Trotter, whose restaurant quickly gained international attention and is credited by many for changing the dining scene in Chicago, said closing the 120-seat fine-dining eatery was not for financial reasons. He said it was the right time and that he wants to take a sabbatical and travel the world with his wife, Rochelle. "I just had to put the flag in the sand and say I’ve got to go for this; otherwise, I never will," Trotter told the paper.
After his travels, Trotter will enter a graduate program for philosophy and political theory; he's been accepted into three programs, two in Chicago and one in California. After that, he said he'd like to open a new restaurant, but what that will be is still undetermined. His take-out storefront, Trotter's to Go, will remain open.
Trotter has helped pave the way for a number of now-acclaimed local chefs like Grant Achatz, Bill Kim, Giuseppe Tentori and Mindy Segal, who have all worked for him. Other famous chef friends, like Alain Ducasse and David Bouley, will help send off Trotter through special dinners leading up to the restaurant's final service on Aug. 31. "This is our chance to say let’s end this on a great note of 25 years," he said.
· Charlie Trotter to Close His World-Renowned Chicago Eatery [Sun-Times]
Charlie Trotter [Photo: Rich Hein/Sun-Times]