HIS DANISH RESTAURANT, NOMA, IS CONSIDERED BY MANY AS THE BEST PLACE TO EAT ON THE PLANET – AND NOW IT’S HEADING TO AUSTRALIA.
He’s one of the most influential chefs of our time, with Copenhagen’s Noma named the world’s top restaurant no fewer than four times. Now, René Redzepi is set to visit Australian shores, bringing his unique approach to cookery to Barangaroo, along with his entire team. We caught up with the 37year-old to discover Sydney’s appeal and how his fundamentally Nordic cuisine will work Down Under.
GQ: Why did you want to come to Australia? René Redzepi:
Australia is a fascinating place with a landscape that’s different to anything I’ve seen before. The ingredients are like going to the moon for us, an exploration into something unknown. That’s why we’re doing it, to learn new things and taste new flavours.
GQ: Noma’s pop-up is here for just 10 weeks. Anything more permanent on the cards? RR:
No, we’re not planning to open a restaurant in Australia. We do it as a residency to allow us to travel, as a team. It’s more about the journey and the learning experience as opposed to fnding a business opportunity. And also, going there for a brief moment makes it extra special for us as a group.
GQ: Noma has been named the world’s best restaurant. How do you handle the expectation that comes with it? RR:
We have a sensible way of looking at these things and realise that you have this moment where the world is looking and you receive a lot of attention, but that attention is only a loan – it’s not yours to keep. So we’re clear on what matters, which is staying creative, working for better team spirit, making you and your family happy.
GQ: Have you managed to enjoy any Australian restaurants? RR:
Honestly, there are too many to mention. I’ve enjoyed an array of places in Australia and I respect equally the person cooking the delicious Thai meal as I do the chefs cooking the best tasting menu.
GQ: What can diners expect from you and Noma in Sydney? RR:
It all depends where you’re from. If you’re not from Australia, you’ll see a lot of things you’re not familiar with, in terms of ingredients. But for the locals we hope we’ll be able to provide an experience that relates to something Australian.
GQ: So tell us – how on earth do you get a table at Noma, anyway? RR:
People always think it’s crazy diffcult, but in fact because everyone thinks it’s diffcult, tables are almost always available up to two or three days after we release a month of reservations. It’s most diffcult to get a table for two, so fnd some friends and get a table of four or six and your chances are much better. Noma Australia opens January 2016 for three months. noma.dk/australia
“IT’S MOST DIFFICULT TO GET A TABLE FOR TWO, SO FIND SOME FRIENDS AND GET A TABLE OF FOUR OR SIX AND YOUR CHANCES ARE MUCH BETTER.”