The Internet is a fickle beast. Sometimes it gives us misogynistic trolls and ludicrously fabricated news stories about pizzerias. But then, just as we're about to delete our Twitter accounts and subsist solely on a reading diet of London Review of Books back issues, perused from a Wi-Fi-less cabin in the Outer Hebrides, it delivers solid gold.
Or, more accurately, solid salt.
We're assuming you've come across SaltBae by now, a.k.a. Nusret Gökçe, the Turkish restaurant owner who went viral after posting an Instagram video of his erotic meat-slicing technique, finished off with a flamboyant dousing of salt. Gökçe's video received 2.4 million views within the first 48 hours of being uploaded, and his sassy salt-sprinkling pose has already been canonised into memedom. Even Rihanna is a fan.
A video posted by nusr_et (@nusr_et) on Jan 7, 2017 at 2:44am PST
And now, SaltBae is going IRL.
Speaking to the Turkish Hürriyet Daily News earlier this week, Gökçe said that he would be taking his restaurant chain, Nusr-Et Steakhouse, global and opening branches in London and New York in the next few months. He admitted that while he does not speak English, he can "communicate with people through meat."
Who needs basic phrases when you have burgers?
Gökçe also divulged the filming process behind his videos, which have earned him 2.5 million Instagram followers. They're shot by staff at his restaurants and no, he didn't pre-plan the salt sprinkle move. He told the newspaper: "That move at the end [salting] came automatically. I did not do that to show off. It is just my signature. You can think of it a kind of final touch for a painting. It was a final touch to the meat, I was blessing the meat."
SaltBae, if you're reading, London is ready to be #blessed.