Meet the Team

Lena Hennessy
Acting Chief Executive Officer

Like many who have played pivotal roles at noma, Irish-born Lena did not originally dream of working in the restaurant industry. She trained as a classical musician at the Conservatoire Municipal de Paris, earned an Honours Degree in Music from the Sorbonne University. She then qualified as a Chartered Accountant and Tax Advisor, before moving into the food industry. In 2020, she assumed the role of Head of Strategy for Northern Europe at Dole plc. One day out of the blue, a recruiter rang to ask if she might be interested in becoming COO of noma. Even though she was convinced it wasn’t a fit, Lena met René for a coffee anyway. She is now at the helm of both the restaurant and Noma Projects at one of the most exciting junctures in the organization’s history.  

Annika de Las Heras
Chief Operating Officer

When Annika joined the noma team in 2012, she had more experience working for the Central Intelligence Agency—where she interned while studying International Relations at Georgetown University—than in restaurants. The daughter of American diplomats, she had lived everywhere from Colorado to Sweden and had just left behind a consultancy in the defense industry. Over the course of the following decade, Annika would spearhead the development of our pop-ups around the world and serve as General Manager of the restaurant. In 2021, after earning an Executive MBA from Copenhagen Business School, she became the founding employee of Noma Projects.

Thomas Frebel
Creative Director

Few people would be more equipped to serve as the bridge between the noma test kitchen and Noma Projects than Thomas Frebel. Since joining the team in 2009, he has had a hand in creating hundreds, if not thousands, of ingredients that have come to define the restaurant. Today, he feeds Noma Projects with a steady stream of out-of-the-box ideas and possesses the discipline, honed over years leading the test kitchen, to bring them to life. In 2018, Thomas co-founded Inua, our sister restaurant in Tokyo, which earned two Michelin stars before closing during the pandemic. He hails from Magdeburg, Germany.  

Cristina Megias
Head of Production

Cristina collaborates closely with Thomas and our creative team to ensure that the flavours and ideas of noma can be shared widely without ever compromising our standards for quality. A native of Spain, she studied food technology, product development and gastronomic science at the Basque Culinary Institute in San Sebastian. A college internship at noma’s fermentation department, along with numerous experiences building innovative food startups from scratch following her graduation, laid the foundations for her current role at Noma Projects.  

René Redzepi

René is the chef-patron of restaurant Noma and the author of several books. He lives in Copenhagen with his wife Nadine and their daughters Arwen, Genta and Ro.