Jordnær head chef and co-founder Eric Vildgaard is leaving the safe confines of the restaurant’s home on the outskirts of Copenhagen to embark on a whistlestop culinary tour across the US.
Since opening in 2017, Jordnær has boldly carved its own niche in Copenhagen’s notoriously competitive restaurant scene, receiving its first Michelin star just months after opening, and a second in 2020. Vildgaard, who founded the restaurant in partnership with his wife Tina, has been commended for his comparatively laidback approach to fine dining, which focuses on the bounty of the ocean.
Vildgaard’s hotly anticipated US tour will see him invited into the kitchens of some of the country’s best restaurants for three two-nightly-only collaborations. First up is NYC, where, on July 19 and 20, he will be partnering with Swedish chef Fredrik Berselius of the two-Michelin-starred Aska, Brooklyn. Here, the pair will craft a 14-course menu that fuses both of their signature styles.
As with Vildgaard, Berselius’s complex cuisine is rooted in Nordic philosophies and holds respect for the natural world and the ingredients it produces in the highest regard.
Next, Vildgaard will travel southwest to LA, where, on July 23 and 24, Jordnær will meet Mélisse – Josiah Citrin’s Michelin-starred Santa Monica restaurant.
Like Vildgaard, Citrin is concerned with making fine dining approachable and unstuffy; instead, an experience at the tiny five-table Mélisse is about understanding the craft behind cookery of this level.
Citrin’s cuisine is rooted in classic French techniques, but the chef gladly pulls from other culinary heavyweights too – namely Japan and Italy – to create a firmly modern menu, which he now describes simply as ‘Californian.’
And finally, Vildgaard’s US tour will conclude on July 27 and 28, when he will craft a 14-course collaborative dinner with Ryan Ratino at Jônt in Washington DC. Designed as an immersive exposure to the fine dining world, the two-Michelin-starred restaurant is sparse in decoration, with just 14 diners seated around a large open kitchen.
Together, Vildgaard and Ratino will create a 16-course menu that showcases the culinary skill of the two chefs, using local, seasonal produce and waste-minimizing principles.