Nusret Gökçe, also known as Salt Bae, is a Turkish chef and restaurateur with a net worth of approximately $80 million. He gained immense popularity on social media in 2017 when videos and photos of his unique meat preparation and seasoning style went viral. Inspired by his newfound fame, Gökçe expanded his business and now owns a chain of luxury steakhouses called Nusr-Et, with branches in various countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom, the Middle East, and Greece.
Born in 1983 into a Kurdish family in Turkey, Gökçe had to leave school in the sixth grade due to financial difficulties. He started his culinary journey as a butcher’s apprentice in Istanbul and later traveled to different countries to gain experience as a chef and future restaurateur.
Despite the viral success, Gökçe’s steakhouses have received mixed reviews from critics. While some praised the entertainment value, others criticized the food quality and high prices.
Gökçe has faced several controversies throughout his career. These include a photo controversy with Fidel Castro, an accident at one of his restaurants resulting in severe burns to a man, accusations of withholding employee tips, violating COVID-19 safety protocols, and involvement in a high bill dispute at one of his UK restaurants.
On the positive side, Gökçe has engaged in charitable endeavors, such as building a school, library, guest house, mosque, and English education center in his hometown of Erzurum, Turkey.