The No-Waste Restaurant

During some research for an article I recently updated on slow food, I came across the web site of a restaurant in Australia that not only encourages dining at a leisurely pace, but offers you a discount if you don’t waste food.
The restaurant is called Wafu. Located in Sydney, it offers Japanese cuisine; with all ingredients used being organic. Wafu aims to be “an expression of an ethical and spiritual commitment to food”.
Wafu takes the issue of food waste very, very seriously. The restaurant asks when you are ordering, you let them know how hungry you are and they will tailor portion sizes accordingly. 
Patrons who eat all they order receive a 30% discount, which applies if you take leftovers home with you – assuming you commit to eating that food and bring along an appropriate reusable container ( not one that you have bought for the specific occasion).
Wafu’s take-out service also asks you to bring your own reusable container or they will supply a compostable one.
Unlike some restaurants that want you fed and out the door as soon as possible, Wafu says to patrons, “Don’t rush your meal. Relax and experience the benevolence of Mother Earth, who had made all things possible.”
What a fascinating place! 
Unfortunately, if you’re visiting Sydney, it’s not just a matter of dropping in for a meal or even booking a table in advance – you have to be a member and they have quite strict joining criteria. 
However, you can order from their take-out menu (which is also first step to gaining membership) – and all things considered, it’s quite reasonably priced. Don’t expect a laundry list of meal options though – when I looked at the site, there were only 3 choices and perhaps the reasoning behind that is related not only to waste control, but to excel in whatever dishes are being offered at the time.
The membership arrangements could seem a little elitist I guess and as I was reading their site, the “no soup for you!” line from Seinfeld ran through my mind a few times. I can understand why the process is in place though – to ensure the restaurant maintains a certain atmosphere, quality and attracts kindred spirits; something that can be very difficult to achieve if you’re letting every Tom, Dick and Harriet in the door.
Anyway, Wafu’s approach to food is an amazing concept on so many levels and it’s something I hope we see more of in years to come.
Learn more about Wafu