Top restaurant noma to close at the end of 2024

Copenhagen restaurant noma, one of the world's top eateries with three Michelin stars, said Monday it would close at the end of 2024 to reinvent itself as a food laboratory.

"To continue being noma, we must change... Winter 2024 will be the last season of noma as we know it", the restaurant, wrote in a post on Instagram.

"We are beginning a new chapter", it said.

"In 2025, our restaurant is transforming into a giant lab -- a pioneering test kitchen dedicated to the work of food innovation and the development of new flavours, one that will share the fruits of our efforts more widely than ever before."

An abbreviation of the Danish words "nordisk" (Nordic) and "mad" (food), noma -- which does not capitalise its name -- opened in central Copenhagen in 2003 before shutting down in 2016.

It reopened two years later in a different, leafier neighbourhood of the Danish capital.

The restaurant has regularly ranked among the top 10 on "The World's 50 Best Restaurants" list, including number two in 2019 and number one for three years running from 2010 to 2012 as well as 2021.

Chef Rene Redzepi has been hailed for reinventing Nordic cuisine, serving dishes such as edible pinecones, ragout of reindeer, and crispy marigold with whiskey egg yolk sauce.

This is not the first time the establishment has reinvented itself.

Forced to close repeatedly for more than six months during the pandemic, it transformed into a burger and wine bar for a month in the summer of 2020.

But even though it will become a test kitchen, diners will still be able to snag the occasional meal, with noma promising to organise pop-up restaurants from time to time, in Copenhagen and abroad.

"Serving guests will still be a part of who we are, but being a restaurant will no longer define us", it said.

"Much of our time will be spent on exploring new projects and developing many more ideas and products".

The restaurant announced last year that it would open for a stint in Kyoto for two months this year, from March 15 to May 20.

cbw/po/yad