Charlie Trotter Dies; Famed Chicago Chef Was 54

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Famed Chicago chef Charlie Trotter has died at the age of 54, according to multiple reports. He was found unresponsive at his North Side home this morning.

Trotter was taken in critical condition to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead. The renowned chef was reportedly found by his son, Dylan.

The Trotter's family friend, Carrie Nahabedian, confirmed his death today.

"My baby's gone," Trotter's wife, Rochelle said, according to Nahabedian.

Charlie Trotter's, long considered one of the best restaurants in the world, saw several renowned chefs (Graham Elliott, Homaro Cantu and Grant Achatz) work under him.

Elliott, a one-time Trotter protégée‎, tweeted Tuesday: "CHARLIE TROTTER: chef, mentor, trailblazer, philosopher, artist, teacher, leader. He now belongs to the ages."

As a chef, Trotter was entirely self-taught.

Charlie never even attended culinary school, in fact, but rather studied political science at the University of Wisconsin, CBS Chicago reports.

"I love what I do," Trotter said in 2012 when he was awarded with an honorary street sign in Chicago the day before his restaurant's last service.

"I pinch myself every day that I get to do this for a living, but on the other hand, one must change their way," he said of his planned lifestyle change.

The chef said he planned to get a Master's in Philosophy at the University of Chicago and travel the world with his wife following the closing of Charlie Trotter's.

Despite his sterling reputation as a chef and a generous humanitarian, Trotter's good works were often overshadowed by his famously volatile temper.


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