On Thursday, the eve of iconic chef Charlie Trotter's final meal at his landmark Lincoln Park restaurant, the city of Chicago unveiled an honorary street commemorating his accomplishments.
The famed chef announced on the first day of 2012 that he was planning to close his flagship eatery, which has been a staple of Chicago's culinary landscape for 25 years. The 52-year-old said then that he planned to travel the world, study philosophy and politics, and then open another restaurant.
While his local reputation is not without blemishes--Chicagoist recently detailed his ongoing legal battle with former employee Beverly Kim over unpaid overtime--dozens of now-famous chefs who cut their teeth in his kitchens will attend a special, private closing meal Friday, including Graham Elliott, Mindy Segal and Anne Burrell, according to ABC Chicago.
Shortly after Trotter's mother unveiled the sign renaming the Armitage and Halsted intersection near his restaurant "Charlie Trotter Way," he told WBEZ's Louisa Chu that he's deciding beween Northwestern and the University of Chicago to continue his studies.
"I love what I do, I pinch myself every day that I get to do this for a living, but on the other hand, one must change their way," Trotter said at the ceremony, which he attended with his mother, wife and staff, according to NBC Chicago. WATCH Charlie Trotter appear on Mark Bazer's "The Interview Show" in summer 2010:
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story said Charlie Trotter's restaurant is located at Armitage and Damen. The story has been updated to indicate it is located on Armitage and Halsted.