Noma is considered by many to be the world’s most influential restaurant. In 2017, the Copenhagen restaurant’s team and Four Seasons partner for a nine-city, 19-day, once-in-a-lifetime Private Jet journey. Noma Chef René Redzepi has curated the itinerary to connect guests with his culinary friends around the world.
Look behind the scenes
One of three Four Seasons Private Jet Experiences available in 2017, the Culinary Discoveries trip introduces guests to top chefs and producers for discussions, foraging expeditions, cooking classes, communal meals and street-food adventures – each experience designed to reveal something not only about the destination’s culinary heritage, but about its culture.
As with every Four Seasons Private Jet Experience, the in-air services and amenities – from the hand-stitched Italian leather flat-bed seats to the latest vintage of Dom Pérignon – are unbeatable, helping to make the journey as enjoyable as the destinations.
SEOUL | May 27–29, 2017
In this burgeoning food destination, the journey begins with a truly exclusive experience: dining at the home of Chef Jong Kuk Lee, a pioneer in the city’s farm-to-table movement. Lee was trained as a painter, but his passion for authentic Korean food has made him a self-taught master of traditional cooking and fermentation. Although he’s more likely to shy away from a spotlight than to seek one out, he has gained renown among those in the know. “I’ve personally been to his home for dinner, and it’s a very sought-after experience,” Redzepi says.
The next day, guests will visit Mount Bukhan and Jin-Kwan temple for a private demonstration of the centuries-old practice of creating temple food – meals designed to enhance meditation. A trip to the pioneering “New Korean” restaurant Jungsik, noted as the first restaurant to apply molecular gastronomy to Korean ingredients, rounds out your time in Seoul.
Between outings, guests will find that Four Seasons Hotel Seoul mirrors the city’s intoxicating mix of venerable history and modern sensibility. Here, Noma Managing Director Peter Kreiner will begin the conversation series with insights into innovation and creativity at Noma. As managing director, Kreiner has created a business model that prioritises the kitchen staff’s inventiveness and the guest’s experience. That deep respect for artisanship has proved wildly successful for Noma, and it is a value widely embraced in Korea.
TOKYO | May 29–June 1, 2017
In 2015, the entire Noma team, along with their families, moved to Japan for six weeks to open a pop-up restaurant with an entirely new menu, new ingredients and new techniques. The Tokyo stop invites guests to see the city the Noma way, from foraging in the city’s outskirts to attending a private dinner with Chef Namae Shinobu at his Michelin-starred L’Effervescence.
For me, Japanese cuisine is on par with all of the greatest cuisines of the world. The range of food, the culinary traditions and the products are amazing. – René Redzepi
Here, you’ll get to explore the brand-new Toyosu location of the famous Tsukiji fish market, one of the largest in the world. “The best fish market I’ve seen is the one in Tokyo,” Redzepi says. “When you go to good ones – the ones that have all of the weird creatures that are in the ocean – it’s like watching a documentary of all of the shapes, sizes and colours of the ocean.”
From Four Seasons Hotel Tokyo at Marunouchi, venture out to visit a Redzepi favourite, Switch Coffee, or take a private samurai sword-fighting lesson with the choreographer for the movie Kill Bill. Redzepi hasn’t tried the latter yet; he jokes, “I don’t think knife skills in the kitchen would get you very far in a sword fight.”
HONG KONG | June 1–3, 2017
Hong Kong is the perfect next “course.” Although the city moves fast, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong is a luxurious getaway, with stunning views of Victoria Harbour, Kowloon and the mountaintop known as the Peak. Enjoy dim sum at the Hotel’s three-Michelin-starred Lung King Heen, cocktails in a red-sail junk boat and a traditional banquet with a whole suckling pig at Fook Lam Moon. “I’m personally very excited about Hong Kong, as it’s a place I’ve always wanted to go,” Redzepi says.
Excitement is certainly on the menu at Bo Innovation, where Chef Alvin Leung, Jr., hosts an “X-treme Chinese Dinner” to immerse you in the avant-garde intersection of molecular gastronomy and modern Chinese cuisine. Get a taste of more traditional local cuisine and culture with a visit to the labyrinthine market to purchase ingredients like dried seafood or the spiky-skinned durian fruit, or to grab a quick bite of roast chicken and an ice-cold beer.
CHIANG MAI | June 3–6, 2017
Four Seasons Resort Chiang Mai, surrounded by a lush mix of jungle and mountains, offers a distinct change from the urban destinations. Former Noma Chef Garima Arora, whom Redzepi describes as “one of the super talents that has been through our kitchen,” joins the group here for a meal and a visit to a Royal Project farm to see sustainable farming models under development in Thailand. The Royal Project is an initiative of the king’s to replace opium farming with agricultural production that provides far-reaching economic and social benefits to the communities in the country’s highland areas.
Guests will begin their stay in Chiang Mai with an elephant trek to a nearby village, and at the end of the first day they will embark on another local adventure: the nightlife. Bo.Lan restaurant founder Duangporn “Bo” Songvisava, recently named one of Asia’s best female chefs, hosts a “Not Your Average Curry” dinner and a night on the town.
MUMBAI | June 6–8, 2017
Arora, originally from Mumbai, joins the journey here too. “I wanted her to become one of the lead managers in the kitchen at Noma, but alas, she was homesick,” says Redzepi – and this colourful and flavour-filled conclusion to the Asian portion of the adventure will explain why.
Guests can head out from Four Seasons Hotel Mumbai to find some of the most innovative street food in the world. Arora leads guests through Crawford Market to sample kebabs, mutton biryani and other beloved dishes, and then leads them through the preparation (and enjoyment) of a meal of traditional Indian food. Back at the Hotel, cocktails and conversation await: Noma Chairman Marc Blazer will share his thoughts on the behind-the-scenes workings of Noma as a global business model.
FLORENCE | June 8–10, 2017
From dinners at Damiano Donati’s bistro in Lucca and on the beach at Il Bucaniere in San Vincenzo to a deep exploration of history and terroir at Tenuta di Valgiano winery, together Noma and Four Seasons Hotel Firenze present the best of Tuscany. Meet Noma Concept Manager Mark Emil Tholstrup, who updates guests on what’s happening in the world of food philanthropy, and a member of the extended Noma family: eighth-generation butcher Dario Cecchini in Chianti. “Dario comes from an amazing tradition of craft and skill, something that is increasingly rare these days,” Redzepi says. “There is always something to learn from him through watching and appreciating his craft.”
The stop in Florence includes a behind-the-scenes tour of the Duomo museum and Michelangelo’s cathedral workshop, private access to the circa-1564 Vasari Corridor at the Uffizi Gallery and a private opening of the Galleria dell’Accademia to see Michelangelo’s David.
LISBON | June 10–12, 2017
See how a seafood-rich culinary tradition has evolved into something new and exciting with the influence of neighbouring cultures. Join acclaimed Chef Nuno Mendes for a petiscos dinner, much like Spanish tapas; he can also introduce you to Lisbon’s nightlife and the street food that sustains it.
From Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon, depart in a motorcycle sidecar for the Hotel’s Extraordinary Experience – a tour with a professional photographer who gives guidance on how to capture the best images of Lisbon’s most impressive miradourous (sites). A customised Street Art Tour reveals large-scale murals created by local and international artist collectives.
The last night in Lisbon concludes with a gala dinner at Belcanto, José Avillez’s two-Michelin-starred restaurant in the historic Chiado district.
COPENHAGEN | June 12, 2017
Redzepi welcomes the group to Copenhagen for a truly special Noma experience. Landing Noma reservations takes a miracle as it is – monthly reservation requests number around 100,000 – but getting in without special arrangements will soon be impossible. Not long after the new year begins, the current Noma location will close its doors, and the restaurant will move to a new urban farm location.
Guests on this journey will not only enjoy a private dinner at the restaurant, they’ll also forage with the Noma team for ingredients like samphire and beach coriander, and share aperitifs on the beach. And during an intimate conversation, Redzepi will take guests through the evolution of Noma from a modernist formal dining setting to its next incarnation.
PARIS | June 12–14, 2017
The trip ends in Paris with a stay at Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris. Redzepi is excited about Parisian food right now: “Paris is very much at the forefront of what’s called ‘bistronomy,’ a sort of mix of fine dining and a bistro. It’s a new type of restaurant with a new comfort feel to it, but the food being very focused and not driven necessarily by traditional foodstuffs like a normal bistro is.”
Noma offers a curated list of the team’s favourite Parisian eateries to explore. At the Hotel, guests on this journey will visit La Cave, the historic 50,000-bottle wine cellar. And on the final night in Paris, the Hotel’s own three-Michelin-starred Le Cinq, led by Chef Christian Le Squer, is the perfect spot to toast your adventure and enjoy a farewell dinner.
Your Journey Begins Here
Select one of the destinations on the Culinary Discoveries itinerary to learn more