What Being Number 1 Meant to René Redzepi

We caught up with the Noma chef a few weeks before his restaurant fell to number 2 on the 'World's 50 Best Restuarants' list
Rene Redzepi Discusses Ranking Restaurants

We caught up with the Noma chef a few weeks before Noma moved to number two on the 'World's 50 Best Restuarants' List

Rene Redzepi
Ali Rosen

Rene Redzepi

The annual "World’s 50 Best Restaurants" list came out today and after three years in the top spot, Copenhagen’s Noma moved down a notch to number two. But don’t start shedding a tear for René Redzepi just yet. When we spoke to him a few weeks ago, the renowned chef expressed appreciation for being number one, but felt that enough had already come to Noma from the designation. "It made us full and it shifted the attention toward our region and gave us a lot of opportunities," he said. "[But] it’s not important to me to stay number one and have these accolades. It was an important stepping stone." He also cites the MAD symposium and Nordic Food Lab as coming in part because of the award.

Redzepi also agrees with the notion that Ferran Adrià has posited, that these lists are always going to be too subjective. "Imagine all of us deciding on the best color of the world each year... There are many restaurants out there that to a lot of people are 10 times better than us," he said.

But no matter the accolade, Redzepi is happy to just be doing what he is already doing. "Do I wish to be a part of food, and cooking?" he says. "Sure, we should all try that, we should all try to leave things a little bit better than we received them."

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It seems like number two will suffice just fine.