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The Cosmopolitan Hotel in Vegas Pays Tribute to Charlie Trotter With a Buffet

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Legendary Chicago chef Charlie Trotter passed away on Tuesday to an enormous outpouring of sentiment from chefs and food world luminaries, and the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas is paying tribute to his legacy today with Trotter-inspired dishes at the Wicked Spoon Buffet. First spotted by Eater Vegas, the hotel is calling it a "tribute to Chef Charlie Trotter and his contributions to the food business in the United States." A classy memorial or tactless and weirdly exploitative? Your call. Either way, the buffet dinner, from 5 p.m. - 9 p.m. today, will set you back $38.00.

In an emailed release, the Cosmopolitan wrote that "the dishes are built around some signature components and techniques that [Trotter] was known for." Chef de cuisine Steve Gotham explained his "inspiration and reasoning" for dishes like "Kashi and Dried Cranberry Salad, with Celery Roasted Pumpkin and Ginger Vinaigrette." The logic: "The kasha and cranberry salad [is] a reflection of the staunch commitment to seasonality, that we also try to echo in Wicked Spoon, cranberries and pumpkin being at their peak in November."

On the "Steamed Scallop and Lobster Sausage" dish, Gotham explained, "Chef Trotter was making the emulsion style frothed sauces almost before anyone and always showcased a flair for Asian flavors in his cooking both of which we are trying to reflect in the steamed seafood sausage dish." Here's the release:

Tomorrow (Thursday, Nov. 7) only, Wicked Spoon at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas will be serving several dishes in tribute to Chef Charlie Trotter and his contributions to the food business in the United States. The dishes, which will be served starting at brunch tomorrow, are:

· Kashi and Dried Cranberry Salad, with Celery Roasted Pumpkin and Ginger Vinaigrette

· Cumin Scented Lamb Ribs with Porcini Potato Puree, and Golden Raisins

· Pork Belly, Chanterelle, and Black Olive Braciole with Wilted Chard and Caperberry Garlic Jus

· Steamed Scallop and Lobster Sausage, with Bok Choy and Lemongrass Coconut Emulsion

The following is a description from The Cosmopolitan's Chef de Cuisine Steve Gotham on his inspiration and reasoning on creating these:

The dishes are built around some signature components and techniques that he was known for. The stuffed pork belly is a rendition of a dish that he produced for his Meat and Game cookbook. The kasha and cranberry salad a reflection of the staunch commitment to seasonality, that we also try to echo in Wicked Spoon, cranberries and pumpkin being at their peak in November. Chef Trotter was making the emulsion style frothed sauces almost before anyone and always showcased a flair for Asian flavors in his cooking both of which we are trying to reflect in the steamed seafood sausage dish.

When I was in college I would often watch his show on PBS, The Kitchen Sessions with Charlie Trotter, and I very much respected a number of the philosophical beliefs that he presented. It had an impact on my decision to pursue a career in the culinary arts rather than continue to graduate school. Through the years I have worked with a number of people that came through his kitchen and they were all deeply influenced by the experience. That is something that is a very important quality for a chef, not just to produce great food, but to be able to influence and inspire the people around you.

Chef Trotter was very important in that regard and many of the most influential chefs of this current generation worked and trained under him. For that reason we feel that it is important to recognize and celebrate him. He had a large role in changing and elevating food culture in this country for nearly 30 years. We would all like to hope to accomplish a fraction as much and inspire our team and co-stars to do and feel the same.

· Wicked Spoon Pays Respects to Charlie Trotter Today [-ELV-]
· All Charlie Trotter Coverage on Eater [-E-]
· All Las Vegas Coverage on Eater [-E-]

The Cosmopolitan

3708 Las Vegas Boulevard S, Las Vegas

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