Everyone can imagine the best restaurants in the world: incredibly luxurious surroundings, overly solicitous service, a general sense of opulence and wellbeing. Noma's model is different. The quayside warehouse is raw. As you walk in, the kitchen is in front of you. The walls are rough with age, colours are washed-out neutrals. It's a lovely space, but as spare as the cooking.
Chef René Redzepi uses only Scandinavian produce – lamb, musk ox, berries, herbs, seafood – prepared without heavy sauces or creams. And he has broken down the barriers between kitchen and dining room – dishes are often brought out by the chefs. It's the unique ingredients, flavours and ambience that make this the best restaurant in the world.
Elizabeth Carter is Consultant Editor of The Good Food Guide