Beautiful photos of the “farm to table mecca” Noma graced the pages of this month’s Harper’s Bazaar, with an accompanying article interviewing chef-owner Rene Redezepi and R&D head Mette Brink Søberg. The Nordic restaurant has come to redefine modern fine dining as using local and seasonal ingredients.
When Noma started, Redzepi says the challenge was how to serve Nordic food year-round, even in the harsh climate of Copenhagen.
“I thought to myself, why are we trying to serve a tasting menu with a little bit of everything as opposed to what’s really good when it’s available?” Redzepi says.
Noma’s tasting menu is divided into three cycles – plant-based in the summer, wild game and foraged mushrooms in fall and local fishermen’s hal in the winter. Noma’s test kitchen is in a greenhouse next to the garden, “we are very connected to the seasons and can pick flowers and leaves to use on the menu right at our doorstep,” Søberg says.
Redzepi says necessary to their creativity is organization. They make a list of ingredients and techniques they’d like to employ, make deadlines and use pictures as a frame of reference. “We keep meticulous records of finished dishes,” he says.
“In the beginning of the creative process, it is important to allow ourselves to spend time working on those ideas that might at first glance seem impossible or ridiculous, because even if they might not end up on the menu, they could lead to something that we would have never come across if we hadn’t sacrificed the time,” Søberg adds. “Often the most innovative and original elements on the menu have many weeks and sometimes months of work behind them.
Read more (Harper’s Bazaar)