The Follow up to Alinea – and it looks awesome.

Over the past 2 weeks we’ve been following Grant Achatz on Twitter, On the 3rd of May he announced on Twitter & Facebook that the next projects would be called NEXT restaurant & The Aviary Bar .

The concept of NEXT is an intriguing one, with all the press releases we read, NEXT is the only one we’ve seen that has it’s own video. It’s such a good idea, we just had to share it with you:

The Alinea team have brought in Rugo/Raff Architects for the plans & the realisation of Mr Achatz’s vision, and whilst details are still sketchy, there least there are plenty of photographs on various groups.

The one thing which is a bold departure for any restaurant is the booking system or the lack of one. At NEXT you buy tickets rather than reserve a table. The theory being that tickets for a Wednesday lunch time will be in in less demand than say @ 7.30pm on a Saturday night and so will be cheaper. The only problem we see with this, is restaurants like El Bulli & The Fat Duck are fully booked months in advance, therefore demand is constant. The ticket price will (apparently) include the price of the menu, which will change every quarter.

From The NEXT website:

A meal at Next will represent a great value. Depending on the menu AND what day and time you are dining, food will be $40 to $75 for the entire prix fixe menu. Wine and beverage pairings will begin at a $25 supplement. Next’s goal is to serve 4-star food at 3-star prices.

Where as most restaurants at this level become temples to their chef’s followers for their distinctive style of food, NEXT will differ. Not only will the menu completely change every quarter but it will take dishes from a period of time & place in the world. Maybe Heston Blumenthal could take a leaf out of Mr Achatz’s book, there is consistency & there is stale.

In the true style of the Chef Hermes blog we contacted the NEXT restaurant team for more information and asked;

I was wondering if there is any more information about Grant’s new restaurant ‘Next’ for our blog.

I know that we have a large portion of our readership that are interested in his unique style of food.

We received a reply within the day, unfortunately it wasn’t favourable;

Chef,

Not yet!

— Nick Kokonas

Despite the interest from the worlds culinary media, the team won’t predict an open date but they are aiming for Autumn 2010.

We wish them all the best for both the new projects which we’ll be looking to visit.

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Beautifully photographed food from Alinea, by Lara Kastner

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