Esben Holmboe Bang is the head chef and co-owner of Norway’s ground-breaking three Michelin- starred restaurant, Maaemo. He was born and raised in Copenhagen, but has spent most of his culinary career in Oslo.
The Norwegian terroir is a relatively unknown treasure of the international culinary world, but it is something that Esben is passionate about exploring. Esben’s cuisine is focused on creating an experience around the clean, bright flavours of Norway, using entirely organic, biodynamic or wild produce. It’s a bold and personal style of cooking. Esben explains: “I opened Maaemo because I wanted to develop a creative outlet where the dramatic and unique Norwegian landscape is distilled onto the plate. A place with warmth. A place where sustainable, generous and personal cooking is the foundation.”
In 2012, just 14 months after opening, Maaemo was awarded two Michelin stars in its first ever mention in the prestigious guide, becoming the first, and only, restaurant in the Nordics to do so. In 2016, Maaemo was awarded a third Michelin star, making Esben one of the youngest chefs to currently hold Michelin’s highest accolade and the first ever in Norway to do so.
In 2018, Maaemo was listed No.35 in the influential World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards. Esben landed a spot in Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential Chefs in the World and was awarded Elite Traveler Magazine’s award for “Young Chef of the Year 2016”. Esben’s playful tasting menu takes Norwegian food and strips it back to its bare essentials before recomposing it in an entirely new narrative. A meal at Maaemo will transport guests on a culinary tour of Norway that sees them travel from the temperate climes of the southerly Hvaler islands to the cold pristine waters of Norway’s West Coast and on to the expansive inland wilderness of Røros, as the tastes of Norway are brought to life on the plate.