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The Nusret Restaurant – the restaurant owner Nusret Gökçe, better known as Salt-Bae, owns one of the most profitable places in London. In this noble restaurant with meat specialities from Turkey, the dishes are served by the chef himself, in a fancy way.

This short video by chef Nusret Gökçe from 2017 is one that everyone has probably seen. Wearing a white T-shirt and stylish glasses, he stands in front of a steak. With an extravagant pose, he sprinkles a big pinch of salt on the piece of meat. This is exactly how he became an internet sensation overnight.

The 39-year-old Turkish national has not always had an easy life. As a child, his family had financial problems. To support them, he had to drop out of school in the sixth grade to start training as a butcher. He completed his training at the age of 13. However, he did not enjoy his job at all because he did nothing but cut meat all day.

From 2007, he travelled through Latin and North America for three years to work as an unpaid chef in restaurants.

In 2010, Nusret returned to Turkey and fulfilled his dream: he opened his own restaurant. In 2012, another company even invested in his business.


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The menu

,,for the real meat enthusiast“

This phrase is the unofficial motto of the Nusret restaurant. The menu on the website contains, how could it be otherwise, meat on top of meat and more meat. The digital menu is very clear with pictures and video clips of the preparation.

But of course, as in any restaurant, there are starters and salads, among fish and seafood, main courses, side dishes and desserts. But if you read the menu more closely, you will notice that the selection is quite different from other menus. After all, not all places offer dishes covered in gold. And the deeper you go into the menu, the more expensive the dishes become. It can happen that the bill exceeds 500 euros.


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One of the earliest successes in Nusret’s career was the publication of one of his menus by journalists in the New York Times. At the time, he was living in the city that never sleeps himself.

In January 2017, Nusret finally became an internet sensation. What seems like a normal video surprisingly went viral. With the video ,,Ottoman Steak” came the likes, the views and thus the fame. A meme was born. What can you see? Just a man salting a steak – that’s why he’s been called Salt-Bae ever since.

And that even drew a guest appearance in a well-known TV series. In the Netflix production Narcos, Salt-Bae plays, as in real life, a cook who prepares meat for the characters.

Fans and even celebrities visit the restaurants, especially to meet Nusret and enjoy the food. Football star Franck Ribéry also paid a visit to one of his restaurants in Dubai and ate a gold-plated ribeye steak, which led to some discussion in Germany.

The chef has already opened 15 branches worldwide, including Dubai, Abu Dhabi, New York and London. Who knows if he would have made it this far if he and his video hadn’t gone viral. And the sales are also breathtaking. In just four months, he was able to take in over eight million euros. Kudos!

Source cover image: Unsplash / Eiliv-Sonas Aceron 

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