David Chang on Momofuku Toronto: Opening July 28, Still Needs to Finalize the Name

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Chang, looking dapper. Photo: Fernando Leon/Getty Images

Even though David Chang wasn't on this year's Time 100 list René Redzepi and José Andrés made it this year; Chang made the '10 list he was still at last night's event gala honoring all the nominees. We grabbed him for a few minutes and got him to finally reveal some new details about his ever-mysterious Momofuku project in Toronto. How mysterious is it? Even Chang isn't quite sure, though he does know it will be huge the biggest project yet for his team.

What can you tell me about your Toronto restaurant?
Its going to be big. Its going to be our largest project weve ever done. But weve got a good team working. Weve got a lot of good people in Toronto, but like any new restaurant, Im still scared shitless.

When you say big, how big?
Its like two or three concepts in one beautiful building, next to the Shangri-La Hotel.

Three stories with one concept on each?
Yes.

What are the concepts?
I dont want to say. [laughs] Because at the very least you know that it very well could change at the last minute with me, so I dont want to say. All I know is that were working on it.

Does it have a name?
Lucky Peach will be the first floor. Daisho is the third floor. Or the whole thing is Daisho? I dont even know. Im not trying to throw you off. Its constantly changing.

So if you dont know whats happening, when is it happening?
July 28th!

Dont you have to figure it out by then?
Youve got to figure it out, but its like we have, like, 25 different types of scenarios that we laid out. So I dont know exactly how its going to work out.

What inspired it? Why were you like, I need to do a giant restaurant in Toronto?
It wasnt so much that it was giant. It was more like, you rarely get to work with a new building, a new kitchen, and someone thats going to support us in something new. Which is why when Sydney was an opportunity, we jumped on it, and its been a lot of fun. So that opportunity doesnt happen in New York that often, right?

How often do you get back in the kitchen?
Uh, Ive spent more time in the kitchens in Sydney than I have in New York this year. But, you know, the same people that make the delicious food are the same people that are going to make it if Im there or not there.

Are any New York people going to go to Toronto?
Yes. Were moving several people up.

People that we know?
Not other than their friends or loved ones. Toronto is an awesome town. And weve sent about ten people up there that might want to go. Nine people want to move up there. I mean, most people havent been. Toronto is a lot of fun.

Will you be there for the film festival in September?
Yes.

Me too, I hope.
Okay, so we can have the same interview and Ill give you proper answers after the fact, so yes, follow up. This is what we did, this is how we opened.

Earlier: Momofuku, Eh?
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