Back in October The Four Seasons was pimping its first new chef in nineteen years, Fabio Trabocchi, to the press, but the honeymoon is over and now it seems the marriage is, too. For unknown reasons, the well-regarded Fiamma chef left the restaurant yesterday. Steve Cuozzo writes, “Although Trabocchi had yet to fully revamp the menu, which had lost its edge in recent years, the dishes I had recently were the best I’d tasted at The Four Seasons in years.” And here’s Adam Platt praising the restaurant earlier this month in “Where to Eat.”
Trabocchi made his reputation as a pyrotechnic chef, first in Washington, D.C., then at the Michelin-starred Fiamma, Steve Hanson’s failed experiment in gourmet Italian cooking. But here, among the staid suits in midtown, his cooking has a mature, even stately feel. If you happen to have $36 in your pocket, my father recommends the elegant new lobster burger (served lunchtime, with pommes soufflés) and the imaginative new pastas, which include spaghetti alla chitarra (mingled with uni, crab, and hints of chile) and a properly decadent version of fusilli all’Amatriciana, which Trabocchi sprinkles with salty shreds of guanciale and rich spoonfuls of melted Pecorino.
Trabocchi’s departure is especially surprising given that he was poised to be at the forefront of midtown’s “dining resurgence” (per today’s press release about a new STK location). Well, we’ll still have STK!
Update: The Feed, which reported the news ahead of the Post, says a PR rep blames the split on “philosophical differences.” [The Feed/TONY]