Lifestyle

6 ways that Noma, the 'world’s best restaurant’, changed the food game

Fined Dining: Restaurant owners say they’re overwhelmed with city COVID inspections

The world of fine dining has been rocked by a shocking announcement.

Three-star Michelin restaurant, Noma, announced this week it would be closing by the end of 2024 in a piece by the New York Times.

Head chef and co-owner René Redzepi said the decision to close the Copenhagen-based restaurant was made because of fine dining as a work environment.

“We have to completely rethink the industry,” Redzepi, 45 said.

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Citing the long hours and intense work to maintain the restaurant's high standard while not being able to compensate employees fairly, Redzepi said, “this is simply too hard, and we have to work in a different way.”

Redzepi said trying to use high-quality ingredients while pricing the restaurant reasonably and trying to pay a staff a fair living wage "doesn't work."

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But beyond the practicality of Noma's finances, the restaurant has struggled to stand out with new and innovative ideas in the past 10 years, because other restaurants have copied Noma's practices.

There's a reason Noma is considered one of, if not the, best restaurant in the world.

It has pioneered food trends to set itself apart from other fine-dining eateries by remaining authentic to its mission to serve New Nordic cuisine.

But like any good idea, other restaurants have taken Noma's ideas as the standard. They were listed by the New York Times food critic Pete Wells in an email to subscribers on Monday:

  • Using natural elements like slates, rocks, and logs on dishes.
  • Opting for locally-grown ingredients rather than importing delicacies.
  • Featuring a wide range of fermented foods.
  • Offering a natural selection of wines.
  • Calling one-bite appetizers "snacks."
  • Using unconventional cooking methods to bring out flavor, like burning hay.

While there is still another two years for people to enjoy the exceptional experience and food at Noma, the restaurant will close and instead, Redzepi will turn his attention to Noma Projects - a test kitchen.

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