In the aftermath of Charlie Trotter's meltdown last week, the retired chef defended himself in an interview with DNAinfo. Trotter tells the publication that he asked the high school photography students to sweep up "four leaves and two cigarette butts" and "wipe around the rim of the toilets." He says he thinks "the instructor was thinking I was trying to take advantage of the students" and that the situation was blown out of proportion by media camped outside his closed restaurant and home.
"That's why Sean Penn and Alec Baldwin beat the crap out of the paparazzi. And I'm not even that famous," Trotter said to DNA.
On Thursday night, After School Matters high school students, who were setting up a temporary exhibit inside his shuttered restaurant, were reportedly berated and tossed out by Trotter. The students returned Friday to pick up their belongings.
The chef, who many consider to be the father of modern fine dining in Chicago, also had a meltdown while attempting to auction items from his restaurant last December, booting Tribune reporter Mark Caro.
An After School Matters statement says they're "working to reschedule the exhibit at another date, time and location in the near future;" while Trotter says that he's "gotta move to the Yukon."
· Charlie Trotter Defends Himself in Art Flap: 'No Good Deed Goes Unpunished' [DNAinfo]
· Another Trotter Tirade: Charlie Reportedly Insults and Kicks Out Photography Students [-ECHI-]
· All Charlie Trotter's Coverage [-ECHI-]