René Redzepi, chef of one of the best restaurants in the world, posted a recent video on his Instagram account showing the staggering number of variations each new dish on his menu must have to cater for different types of allergies.
Noma has three menus that run consecutively throughout the year, based on when ingredients are at their peak. Right now they're just hitting seafood season and the video shows just how much work is required to create dishes that match a total of 13 different allergies, intolerances and restrictions.
A post shared by Rene Redzepi (@reneredzepinoma) on Jan 6, 2019 at 7:55am PST
Many of the options are allergy-based, but some such as ‘no seafood’, ‘vegan’ or ‘vegetarian’ make you question why someone with a 'no-seafood' restriction would to visit one of the world's most famous restaurants during their seafood season. The video counts 13 opt-ins for each of the items on the seafood tasting menu:
- No shellfish
- No fish
- No lactose
- No gluten
- No mollusc
- No crusteacens
- No bivalves
- No cephalopods
- No nuts
- No mushroom
- No stonefish
Hundreds commented on Redzepi’s video, including fellow chef Grant Achatz, who echoed the sentiment displayed across the industry of the growing demand to cater to the changing dietary needs of customers, whether it's health-based or a personal choice. “It really is insane and definitely getting more intense," wrote Achatz, "I recall 15, 20 years ago when it was just shellfish, nuts and some religious restrictions. Now it’s everything all the time.”
Anyone working in a professional kitchen will tell you about the increase in restrictions from guests, the best places smile, cook the dish as ordered and move on to the next task, but it must get frustrating when there are figures from recent studies showing that a large chunk of people who believe they have an allergy acually don't.