Not even Noma could survive the broken restaurant business model

photograph: Scanpix Denmark (Reuters)

Noma, one of the world’s most influential restaurants, is closing (again).

The Copenhagen-based restaurant has announced that it will transform into a full-time laboratory dedicated to creating new products and flavors in 2025.The team will continue to host culinary pop-ups and events Denmarkand the rest of the world.

“Serving our guests will always be part of who we are, but being a restaurant no longer defines us.” website read now.

In Noma Meals from $500. CEO and Founder Rene Redzepi told the New York Times his high restaurant never made him rich, mainly due to cost of Management of a high-end restaurant that sticks to high-quality ingredients

Redzepi said he came to believe The fine dining model is unsustainable. “Financially, emotionally, as an employer and as a human being, I’m not doing well,” he said. told the times.

Soaring food and labor costs

Noma’s closure comes at a time when restaurants are struggling with rising food and labor costs. authentic Inflation continues due to pandemic. But even before pandemic, restaurant workers were starting Demand higher wages and better working conditions.

At Noma, as part of the staff for many years worked without pay As an intern, at least 16 hours a day.that is this kind of mathematics that have It has essentially supported the fine dining industry around the world.

The future of fine dining

Now that many workers are gone, that’s why What would happen to the fine dining industry if they were willing to put up with low wages in exchange for long, grueling hours?

For Noma, that means abandoning it and refocusing its business on selling commercial food and hosting the occasional “pop-up.” redzepi he said upon Noma’s site that he desire To construct A “More Sustainable Workplace” for Teams—1 A place where employees can diversify skill Also focus on A particular area they are passionate about.

Redzepi said on Instagram that Noma employees would be part of the “next chapter,” but did not specify what they would do.

This isn’t the first time Noma has made changes. In 2018, Noma reopened after a one-year hiatus. urban farm conceptIn May 2020, when the pandemic began, Noma wine and burger bar With takeout option.

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