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Robert Gadsby Leaves Noe, Omni Hotels

We just heard that executive chef Robert Gadsby has left his post at Noe in the Omni Hotel downtown, as well as the one in Houston and the Omni restaurant in Chicago. Gadsby opened Noe in July 2003 to good reviews, reviving a staid hotel restaurant with his special brand of fusion cuisine. He tempted die-hard foodies with a 21-course menu, and recently taunted Chicago's anti-foie gras campaign with a series of banned-food dinners at all three restaurants. (We checked out the one here and have just one word: Absinthe.) He challenged big man Batali on Iron Chef America this season (lost, but it was a good attempt). Rumor is he doesn't have plans for a new restaurant in LA, at least in the immediate future. Gadsby relocated to Houston when Noe opened there in 2004 and oversaw the three Omni restaurants, which means that chef de cuisine Glen Ishii has been running the ship here in LA. Successfully, too; the restaurant still pulls in steady business. No word on Gadsby's replacement yet, but we expect some news next week. Stay tuned.

On a side note: Who knew that Gadsby gave chef Jeff Henderson his first restaurant job, the one that set him on the path to become the executive chef at the Cafe Bellagio in Las Vegas after getting a 20-year prison sentence for selling crack, which led to his best-selling book Cooked? Now the book is being made into a movie starring Will Smith. Since Henderson credits Gadsby with giving him first kitchen job as a dishwasher at Gadsby's, we wonder who will play the senior chef in the movie? Wesley Snipes?
· From the Streets to the Stove [Vegas Pop]