Next year, the Ace Hotel Kyoto will see “world’s best restaurant” Noma move in for a ten-week residency, bringing cutting-edge New Nordic cuisine to Japan. Jenny Southan reports
Headed up by pioneering chef René Redzepi, Copenhagen’s famous Noma restaurant will embark on a ten-week residency at the trendy Ace Hotel Kyoto, from March 15, 2023, to May 20.
Taking over the Ace hotel’s 64-seat restaurant, the team from Noma will serve a unique tasting menu “ inspired by the distinct ingredients and culinary history of the Kyoto region”.
Highlighting the season of spring, Noma will be sourcing ingredients from local farmers, hunters, fishmongers and foragers, deepening the restaurant’s long-standing admiration of and connection to Japanese cuisine.
The multi-course tasting menu will cost €475 per person with accompanying alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks pairings for an additional €300 per person. (Here are one of the dishes Noma has presented in the past.)Redzepi says: “I believe Kyoto to be the birthplace of the Western tasting menu, and it remains one of the most important cities through which to understand the fine dining scene today.
“Much of my own journey and inspiration can be boiled down to a handful of important moments, and going to Japan and Kyoto for the first time is one of them. We have always wanted to return and explore this region as a team.
“We have been working on this specific project for the past two years, and we have had a team on the ground since late spring, foraging and researching what will form the foundation of our Kyoto menu.
“Our main inspiration comes from the very heart of Kyoto, the kaiseki cuisine, while not at all being a Japanese restaurant. We come to be inspired, to learn, to absorb new creative processes and to hopefully bring back new perspectives and a clearer vision for how to be Noma.”
Brad Wilson, CEO of the Ace Hotel Group, says: “We feel incredibly honoured to partner with René and the entire Noma team for their fourth global residency. Built upon a shared reverence for craft and artistry, as well as a deep respect for culinary traditions long practiced in Japan, the collaboration will bring an incomparable gastronomic experience to the city over its ten-week span.
“In Noma, we recognise a kindred spirit of innovation and risk-taking. We look forward to hosting them and inviting guests to experience their visionary approach to food and fine dining.”
Lunch and dinner reservations will open from November 7 at 7am EST via Noma’s newsletter. The Ace Hotel Kyoto will simultaneously sell a two-night accommodation package from ¥120,000 (£710) for two people that includes a meal at Noma. The twice-daily sittings will run for four days per week – Wednesday to Saturday.
The Ace Hotel Kyoto will be the second residency for Noma in Japan – the first being one in 2015 at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Tokyo.