"I am truly passionate about conveying how food is a reflection of emotions, experiences, childhood memories, travels, and the places I have lived. Through my culinary creations, I aim to communicate this fundamental concept to the guests who savor my dishes. This is the essence of how I approach cooking: as a means to express myself and connect with others"
love detail conquest satisfaction
My cuisine is rooted in a meticulous exploration of the finest local and Italian ingredients, products and delicacies
any dish needs his time and deserve respect care and love
Maintaining simplicity is crucial; it is the key to expressing your emotions. Follow this path, where everything begins with the quest for the finest ingredients and culminates in the gratifying experience at our guests' tables. It is an inspiration that satisfies all my senses.
RESTAURANTS & KITCHEN
Born and raised in Cagliari, Sardinia, Massimo Sollai's journey to becoming an Executive Chef took a unique and adventurous path. Driven by his love for travel and a global perspective, Massimo has spent the past 16 years involved in managing the construction, design, and launch of hotels and restaurants across the UK, Europe, and now the Middle East.
Embarking on a true culinary expedition, Massimo's meticulous attention to detail, pursuit of perfection, and holistic, international approach to hospitality have shaped his career, allowing him to gather skills, techniques, and ingredients from various continents.
Since 2018, Massimo has been a proud member of the esteemed EuroToques Guide, founded by master Gualtiero Marchesi, alongside the top 200 Italian chefs in Europe. His daily motto is "let's have fun while always working hard."
The inspiration for Massimo's culinary creations stems from his childhood. Every Sunday, he would gather at his grandmother's house, where she meticulously prepared and cooked ingredients of the highest quality, sourced from the local market and various points around the city. These Sunday lunches, filled with indelible memories, have guided Massimo throughout his career, instilling in him a passion for transmitting joyful emotions and comprehensive hospitality. His grandmother's insistence on quality, seasonality, and exceptional local knowledge serves as an everlasting influence.
Choosing to become a chef was influenced by Massimo's early experiences working in a renowned London restaurant under the guidance of Chef Helena Puolakka. He was captivated by her approach in managing a busy kitchen and brigade with honesty, humor, and firmness, which motivated the team tremendously. This initial exposure to professional hospitality inspired Massimo to work diligently, with integrity, respect for others, and a sense of humor.
When it comes to signature dishes and beloved ingredients, Massimo's preferences have evolved over the years due to his international experiences. Ingredients such as ginger and coriander, which were once unfamiliar to him, have become favorites. Currently, he enjoys working with saffron from Puglia, Spanish anchovies, and sweet carrots from Fasano in Puglia. One of his unique signature dishes highlights the contrasting flavors and textures of different types of Italian carrots, utilizing various cooking techniques and a vanilla marinade. Massimo has a profound affection for tomatoes in all their diverse shapes, sizes, colors, and varieties, particularly those from Southern Italy.
Among his favorite places in Italy, Venice holds a special place in Massimo's heart. Working in the lagoon at one of the world's most prestigious 7-star hotels and having the honor of catering George Clooney's wedding allowed him to experience the romantic charm of Venice from a gastronomic perspective. The lagoon, at certain times of the year, offers rare and delectable gastronomic treasures, including exquisite crabs. It was during his time in Venice that Massimo had the privilege of cooking ancient Venetian recipes dating back to the 1800s—an experience he considers to be the pinnacle of his professional career. Venice, with its unparalleled charm and the absence of cars replaced by the essentiality of small boats, remains a truly unique city in the world.
RESTAURANTS & KITCHEN
around the globe
RESTAURANTS & KITCHEN