In a food world stunner, internationally acclaimed chef René Redzepi announced that his Copenhagen restaurant Noma will close at the end of 2016—and reopen the following year as an urban farm. Noma, often considered one of, if not the, finest restaurants in the world, is best known for leading the foraging movement. As Redzepi told the New York Times, this move pushes forward on that dream, cooking not just what can be found locally, but what can be grown on-site.
This new version of Noma will also be located in Copenhagen’s Christiania neighborhood, and it will be as ambitious as you might expect. Located right in the middle of an urban space—the Times goes so far as to describe it as “decrepit” and “an auditorium-sized crack den”— Redzepi plans to dig up an asphalt lot and replace it with soil, add a greenhouse to the roof, and even build a floating field on top of a raft.
Noma’s menu will follow suit with the new farm-focused ethos, doubling down on the respect for seasonal ingredients that Noma already offers. Redzepi explains that the summer months will transform Noma into “a fully vegetarian restaurant,” then focus on wild game in the fall and seafood in the wintertime. The restaurant will also explore a departure from the traditional tasting menu format of fine dining. Redzepi is also bringing back his former sous chef Trevor Moran (currently at Nashville favorite The Catbird Seat) to help run the new Noma.
If you want to grab reservations at Noma before it closes after a final New Year’s Eve service in 2016, keep in mind that the restaurant was already slated to be closed in Copenhagen from January until May of 2016 for its pop-up move to Sydney, Australia. So you’ve just got the rest of this year and the latter half of 2016 to see what Noma is all about before it transforms into something new.