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The real dining experience that inspired the new movie The Menu

by Stewart Cole

There is actually a gourmet restaurant so exclusive that it requires you to take a boat to its private island to experience it, and Will Tracy went to Cornelius Sjømatrestaurant (Cornelius Seafood Restaurant in English) on his honeymoon in Norway several years ago. As he said Seth Meyershe was just sitting down to the long-awaited five-hour tasting menu meal when he saw the boat that had brought them there slowly pull away and began to panic.

“I’m kind of world-class claustrophobic,” Tracy said. “I immediately started to panic a little bit. I felt like, what if something goes wrong? We’re putting our lives in their hands, right? I mean, what if someone has a heart condition? We’re miles from the mainland.”

Fortunately for Tracy, who describes himself as “one of those insufferable foodies”, his meal at the Cornelius Sjømatrestaurant went smoothly, unlike the fate that awaits his film’s characters. While the real Cornelius boasts a meteorological fjord-to-table menu “inspired by the weather of the day and the raw beauty of the local fjords”, the titular dining experience of “The Menu” features something a little more sinister.

“The Menu” received rave reviews when it premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September (c Variety) and currently has a 91% fresh score Rotten tomatoes with an audience rating of 89%. Opens in most theaters on November 18, 2022.

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