COPENHAGEN: Noma restaurant chef and owner René Redzepi has announced the temporary closure of noma Restaurant till at least 14 April.
“Despite the fact that being together is everything that we do, the reality is that at this time, being together is not in the best interest of our community,” said the award-winning chef and one of the leaders of the world of gastronomy.
“This is the hardest decision that I actually had to take in my life but we have decided to temporarily close restaurant noma until 14 April at the earliest at least as it stands right now.”
The chef said no one could have anticipated the developments. “We are doing our best to navigate with a united spirit and good energy. As a team, we have service and hospitality in our DNA, it is who we are and we want nothing more than continuing to serve people, giving them some escape from what’s going on, welcoming them into our home. However from what we know about the coronavirus to date, reducing social contact is essential,” said Redzepi.
“Our duty to our team and to our guests is all that matters,” he said.
He said that staff would be paid till the restaurant closes temporarily and the restaurant will continue to pay the health insurance for its staff including cover for mental health.
“I feel it is important to say that we are not shifting into panic mode but into family mode.”
Redzepi said that the restaurant will provide meals to staff for breakfast, lunch and dinner and they will also provide short-term financial assistance for those who need it.
“We will be closing our doors for the restaurant but not to life in the community. We will be together as a team every single step of the way,” he said.
“There is no question that these will be difficult times. The challenges that we face are the same one that colleagues across Copenhagen, Denmark and the globe are facing. We stand with everyone and we are going to face this challenge together.”
He urged customers to support restaurants by not cancelling their reservations but postponing them or even buying gift cards. “Please continue to support restaurants, cafes and bakeries that are still open. These are our friends and neighbours and we are all one community,” he said.
Redzepi said ‘we are closing for a moment but we hope to see you very soon.’