San Francisco Restaurant Says Kanye West Booked Private Table Using a Noma Chef's Name

The crew at Nari expected to host famed Danish chef René Redzepi — they got the famous rapper instead.

London Celebrity Sightings - October 10, 2020
Kanye West seen leaving a London, England restaurant on October 10, 2020. Photo: Neil Mockford / Contributor/Getty Images

San Francisco Thai restaurant Nari is another part of chef-owner Pim Techamuanvivit's highly acclaimed portfolio, along with the Michelin-starred Kin Khao, just over a mile away, and the Michelin-starred Nahm in Bangkok. So when someone called Nari and asked for a last-minute reservation for "some Noma people," no one was surprised that chef René Redzepi would want to try out Techamuanvivit's by-all-accounts-unbelievable gaeng rawaeng.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the restaurant took the reservation, since its semi-private dining room wouldn't be occupied that night — and, let's be honest — because they probably thought Redzepi could be stopping in. When the six-person party arrived, Techamuanvivit was trying to find a familiar face among the masked group.

A woman with the party asked for "the most secluded table possible," and they were ushered into the semi-private room. It didn't take long for the staffers to figure out that the "Noma people" weren't coming, and that the woman with the group was the one who had called in the "Noma" reservation. They also realized that Kanye West was among the diners at that special table.

"A couple [employees] were very, very fangirl-excited," Techamuanvivit told the Chronicle. "Some of the cooks were definitely disappointed it wasn't René." (Although Techamuanvivit hasn't specified when the high-profile bait-and-switch actually happened, she didn't tweet about it until Thursday. "The other night somebody dropped @ReneRedzepiNoma's name for a 6-top on the fly at Nari and in walked Kanye," she wrote.)

Techamuanvivit stopped by the table after their meals had been served — an order that included the gaeng rawang muan — and asked "Who works for my friend René?" The woman who'd called to make the reservation just said "He's not here."

Techamuanvivit seems to have gotten a laugh out of the situation, and she said that Kanye and his group were "perfectly polite people happy to eat the food," and that they didn't seem like "rockstar people." She also said that it was fortunate that the semi-private dining room was available that night, because when the restaurant is booked, it's booked, regardless of which celebrity (or esteemed chef) shows up at the door.

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