Noma founder takes on New York

Busy New York travellers may soon be able to grab some smørrebrød to go now that famed chef Claus Meyer looks set to open a large Scandinavian food hall in Grand Central Station.

Noma founder takes on New York
Claus Meyer will soon be trading in the tranquility of his backyard for the hustle and bustle of the city that never sleeps. Photo: Mads Nissen
The New Nordic Cuisine craze is invading the Big Apple. 
Danish chef Claus Meyer has announced that he will open a 1,200 square metre Scandinavian-themed food hall in New York’s famed Grand Central Station.
“Grand Central Terminal, one of the city’s most bustling hubs, is the perfect venue for the delicious and unpretentious food Nordic cuisine is based on,” Meyer said in a statement. “The two are made for each other – fresh, vibrant, egalitarian – and our Danish team is delighted to come not just to New York but to this specific location.”

Meyer is a co-founder of Copenhagen restaurant Noma, which has repeatedly claimed the title as the world’s best restaurant. Although Meyer sold his share in Noma last summer, he remains one of Denmark’s best-known chefs and is viewed as an architect of the New Nordic Cuisine movement, which highlights the use of natural and local produce. 
According to a report in the New York Times, the city's Metropolitan Transportation Authority has put its support behind Meyer’s proposal to instal a food hall in the station’s Vanderbilt Hall. The plan calls for a combination of retail stores, casual restaurants and a balcony cafe. There will also be an adjacent 100-seat Nordic brasserie.
According to the Times, it is “highly unlikely” that the proposal will fail to gain final approval. 
Meyer, who teamed up with American investors to outbid 14 other proposals to be the first permanent installation in the Vanderbilt Hall, told the Times he looks forward to altering his New Nordic Cuisine approach to fit his new surroundings.
“Nordic cuisine is very much about capturing the local flavour, so I will have to find a way to bring my philosophy to the New York restaurant landscape,” he said. 
If all goes according to plan, Meyer’s Scandinavian food hall will open in 2016. 

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Danish Michelin restaurant Noma to open burger bar after pop-up success

Two-starred Michelin restaurant Noma is to open a burger bar in Copenhagen's Christianshavn neighbourhood.

Danish Michelin restaurant Noma to open burger bar after pop-up success
The team at Noma's new burger bar counterpart, Popl. Photo: Popl

The famous Danish restaurant ran a pop-up burger bar earlier this year, after its normal operations were closed down due to coronavirus restrictions. The concept was popular and is now returning for good.

The burger bar, Popl, is pitched as a burger restaurant with a simple menu, inspired by Noma’s pop-up from the summer. The name comes from the Latin, populus, meaning people.

The restaurant’s owner, René Redzepi, told newspaper Politiken that the initial expectation of 300 customers per day for the pop-up burger bar was increased to 1,200 at the last moment.

“We realised how fantastic it was to make something for everyone,” Redzepi said.

The permanent restaurant will have seating as well as offer takeaway, with meat, vegetarian and vegan offerings on the menu.

“Fine dining and Michelin felt a bit dated and wrong once we were able to re-open [after coronavirus lockdown, ed.]. We wanted to make something for everyone. And what does everyone like? Burgers,” the head chef and restaurant owner told Politiken.

The new restaurant will be located at Strandgade 108, the former home of Restaurant 108, which closed this year. It will be staffed by “Noma veterans (from) both front and back of house,” the new restaurant said in a press release.

“This year we have faced some of the biggest challenges ever in our seventeen years of operating Noma, dealing with the effects of the pandemic both at the restaurant and sadly the resulting closure of Restaurant 108, but it also came with a few major highlights. Above all, our summer burger season, when our doors were open for everyone to stop by,” Popl’s statement also read.

The new burger bar is scheduled to open on December 3rd.

READ ALSO: Michelin stars return to re-opened Copenhagen restaurant