Expect Vegemite and crocodile at Noma Australia
Redzepi says they will not serve carrots, beets or cabbage at the pop-up “because we do that everyday at home”
Foraging becomes quite a bit more perilous when you are rooting around for ingredients in Australia, home to more deadly snakes than any other country on the planet. Nevertheless, the menu at Noma Australia, René Redzepi’s 2016 pop-up which opens today in the Sydney suburb of Barangaroo, will feature a few creatures better known for dining on Australians, rather than ending up on their dinner plates.
Chefs at the harbour-side restaurant will be working with lumps of crocodile fat, as well as other local forna and flora, including mud clams, abalone ants, seaweed, and, the Australian reports, the restaurant’s own bespoke version of Vegemite, as part of its specially tailored AUS$485 (£237, $339, €338) set menu.
Redezpi says he and his staff, who were all flown over from his Copenhagen restaurant to work on this for a ten-week pop-up service, will combine these ingredients with a specially sourced selection of local spices. “That's where we found the most unique flavours and also the most fun,” explains the chef. “I mean you don't want to travel to Australia to work with a carrot or a beet or a cabbage leaf, because we do that everyday at home."
The pop-up restaurant, which opens Australia Day, 26 January and closes after dinner on Saturday 2 April, follows on from Noma’s 2015 Tokyo pop-up, which saw Redzepi and co serving a similarly distinctive menu at the city’s Mandarin Oriental.
As with the Tokyo venture, Noma Australia will plate-up its offerings on locally produced porcelain to diners lucky enough to have bagged a reservation.
Noma’s antipodean home has been built specifically for Redzepi’s brief residency within a new apartment development, and has room for just 56 diners, as well as a terrace and an Aussie-style an outdoor grill.
Alas, all available bookings have been taken, yet would-be diners can still sign up or a waiting list here. Others can learn more about this innovative chef, by taking a look at our René Redzepi books, including Noma, A Work in Progress, Coco, and Cook It Raw.