70 years old | Restaurant owner Sikke Sumari needs better communication with Finnish restaurants

Restaurant entrepreneur Sikke Sumari is not enthusiastic about cooking, but even more about eating.

“No it’s not a passion at all! ”

The interview only took a few minutes to Sikke Sumari detonate a real news bomb. He reveals that fidgeting in the kitchen and tinkering with boiling dams are not his favorite hobbies at all.

“Never been,” Sumari adds.


“No. Although so many times it is assumed. ”

Image a devoted cook, on the other hand, is no wonder. Sumari is Cooking War and MasterChef Finland a grid face familiar from such food programs, a restaurateur who runs two food restaurants in the Helsinki metropolitan area and a tourist farm in Saaremaa, Estonia, as well as a popular cook and food blogger.

His life revolves largely around food.

But at the stove, Sumari does not like to spend his time. And on the other hand, he wouldn’t really have time, because there is so much else to do. At home, the cooking side is largely the responsibility of her husband, Tony Ilmoni, an experienced restaurateur he too.

Restaurant level food so?

“Well, that restaurant level is a really interesting definition. If you think about what it might mean in this country, ”Sumari says and laughs.

“If my husband were asked, he would say no restaurant gets so good. And yes, he does an excellent job. ”

RELATIONSHIP the food Sumari describes as devoted. He says he treats every serving he eats with great curiosity and a relatively high standard. Whatever he wouldn’t put in his mouth.

“Poorly made food annoys me,” Sumari says.

“Food must always be carefully prepared. I don’t eat anything. ”

Respect for food is also important to Sumari. He says the moment of dining doesn’t have to be solemn, but the effort can still be shown to appreciate with small symbolic gestures. For example, by not carrying a can of milk on the dining table.

Sumari’s friend of the quarrel is not. Close to his heart is an unpretentious home-cooked food characterized by high-quality ingredients and good clean flavors. Layout not so much.

He believes this trait to be the cancellation of a childhood home. Sumar’s mother was a skilled chef, whose traditional recipes from the cabbage box to the meatballs have also risen to be the enduring favorites of Sumar’s food blog.

He says he also appreciates simplicity in restaurant dishes.

“I don’t like the dose being set on the plate drop by drop.”

WITH THE LARGEST on a flame Sumar’s appetites linger during his travels in Italy. He says he enjoyed the most memorable meals of his life in the uncomplicated trattorias of the small villages, which serve simple food made exclusively with love and professional pride.

The Teatro di Medici restaurant in Tuscany is particularly memorable.

“There you feel like you’re on the edge of some primitive. That pleasure of eating is just like…, ”Sumari describes and sighs loudly.

In Italian food culture, Sumari is appealed not only by the palette of tastes but also by community, openness and friendliness. In particular, he says he admires the natural dialogue that exists between customers and restaurant staff. The order is often discussed at length and earnestly, and the enthusiasm is genuinely mutual.

According to Sumari, such a culture is lacking in Finland.

“Finns don’t really know how to communicate in a restaurant. We tend to have the waiter ask if Taste and the customer answers that yes please. It stays there. If the waiter starts to analyze the food a little more closely, you don’t know how to approach it. ”

“I’ve instructed my own staff not to even ask that question. Instead, they need to ask if all is well. If you ask, Does it taste, you force the customer into a cramped one. I see it as a rather difficult question. ”

WHEN Asking Sumari what kind of cook he himself is, he laughs out loud. Sumari replies that if his sons were asked, they would probably ask their mother to make a box of pasta.

Not that there is anything wrong with the pasta box, Sumari points out.

“I have a pretty good recipe for that.”

But he admits that the fault of the hi-fi player cannot be found in him even by searching. Sumari says he is quick in his kitchen chores, and he doesn’t have enough interest in delving into conjuring up culinary wonders for a long time at a time.

“I’ve always wanted to do good quickly,” he says.

“Sometimes I watch Toni delve into cooking. It is almost a meditative activity. He’s in a whole other world, and I myself am hungry and wondering how long you’re going to peel that parsley into it. ”

Sikke Sumari

  • Born 1951 in Kylmäkoski. Lives in Helsinki.

  • A restaurateur, television presenter, blogger and food writer.

  • Runs Sikke’s restaurant in Helsinki, Haukilahti Pearl in Espoo and NamiNamastetta tourist farm in Saaremaa, Estonia.

  • Graduated as a chef from Restaurant School Perho in 2017.

  • Got the best TV performer in Venla in 2000.

  • The family includes Spouse Tony Ilmoni and three adult sons.

  • Turns 70 on Sunday, June 13th.

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