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Chef Charlie Trotter Says It’s Time To Retire, In His ‘Prime’

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Chef Charlie Trotter talks with CBS 2 about his retirement plans. (CBS)

Chef Charlie Trotter talks with CBS 2 about his retirement plans. (CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — The man credited with helping foster Chicago’s reputation as a major food city is hanging up his white coat and tall puffy hat.

Media reports over the weekend said renowned chef Charlie Trotter is closing his eponymous Lincoln Park restaurant after 25 years to pursue a master’s degree in philosophy and political theory.

On Monday, Trotter himself confirmed it, saying it is time to pursue his other passions.

“This prime time in my life to do something else — I may never do it,” Trotter told CBS 2’s Ed Marshall. “Look at Mayor Daley. Twenty five years, he’s retired – I wouldn’t say retired, he’s doing other things. Oprah: After 25 years of her main show in Chicago, she’s doing other things. This is the time to do it.”

Trotter says he also plans to travel.

“I really haven’t been able to travel the way I’d like to travel,” he says of his business-related trips. “I’ve traveled extensively all over the world, but they’re also very surgical trips … rarely being able to stay and soak things in.”

Charlie Trotter’s will close in August. That leaves precisely 160 opportunities to experience a meal there before he locks the doors for good.

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