Le Bouchon Chef Jean-Claude Poilevey Died

chicago Le Bouchon Chef Jean-Claude Poilevey

Le Bouchon Chef Jean-Claude Poilevey of Oak Park died early Saturday in Eisenhower Expressway collision.

The man killed in an early Saturday morning crash of 15 cars has been identified as chef and restaurateur Chef Jean-Claude Poilevey, a resident of Oak Park and a noted Chicago chef for many decades.

He was 71 years old.

“We are heart broken. The world lost an incredible man, chef, and friend,” the restaurant posted on Twitter Saturday evening.

The chain-reaction crash was caused by icy conditions at about 12:40 a.m. Poilevey was on his way home from his restaurant, Le Bouchon in Bucktown. State Police said a series of crashes took place, with the cars piling into each other. Poilevey reportedly was struck after leaving his vehicle. Three other people were injured and taken to local hospitals.

His profile on GreatChefs.com notes Poilevey was born in the Burgundy region of France, and he began learning his trade at the age of 14. He was a cook in the French army, too. After a stint in the army, he moved to London.

In 1968, Hugh Hefner recruited Poilevey and several other French chefs in London to open The Playboy Club in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, according to his biography. A year later, he came to Chicago.

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