Somer Sivrioglu spent his formative years in a “long, unpaid, unappreciated, unofficial apprenticeship” in his mother’s restaurants in Istanbul and Bodrum, learning hands-on the skills of both a chef and restaurateur. In 1995, he moved to Australia to complete an MBA. High-profile corporate food and beverage roles followed, including management positions at Hilton Hotels, Fox Studios, the Urban Purveyor Group and Wagamama Group. Yet the call of the kitchen finally won out: as Somer puts it, after 10 years of “cooking the books”, it was finally time to start cooking the food.
In 2007, Somer opened his first restaurant, Efendy, in Sydney’s Balmain. Driven by passion, determination and sheer stubbornness, he set out to change Australia’s late-night-kebab perception of Turkish food, championing the complexity, seasonality and regionality of his homeland’s contemporary cuisine. An impressive collection of local and national restaurant industry awards speaks to the success of his campaign.
In 2015, Somer co-authored his first cookbook, Anatolia: Adventures in Turkish Cooking, with David Dale. It’s been printed in five countries in three languages and was named the best international cookbook of 2016 by the prestigious International Association of Culinary Professionals.
Somer opened his second restaurant, Anason, in Sydney’s Barangaroo harbourfront precinct in 2016. It’s based on the meyhanes of his beloved Istanbul – relaxed diners where locals drop by to eat meze, drink raki and socialise – and is now an award-winner in its own right
Somer has appeared on many radio and TV shows including Destination Flavour, Food Safari Fire, and, most recently, The Chefs’ Line on SBS, as well as starring in his own series, Somer’in Mutfagi (Somer’s Kitchen) for two seasons on Turkish cable television. He is in demand for local and international culinary events and has graced the stages at Taste of Sydney, the Culinary Institute of America and Gastromasa in Istanbul.
Somer returns to Turkey annually to keep up-to-date with contemporary Turkish food and the vibrant Istanbul dining scene. At Istanbul’s 2018 Gecce Restaurant Awards, both Anason and Efendy were ranked in the Best in the World category.
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Residing in France on a self-imposed exile since 1999, the wife of the late protest folk singer Ahmet Kaya took legal action to stop the screening of a biopic, filmed without her family's approval.
Member of the 'Academics for Peace' movement, Turkish-French academician Tuna Altinel of Lyon-1 University is acquitted after 81 days of imprisonment and six months of trial in Turkey.
Associate professor at EPFL (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology), Altug works on the development of powerful, next-generation health diagnostic tools using nanoparticles and light.
Former German Green Party deputy, attorney Memet Kılıç is facing an arrest warrant over insulting President Erdoğan in an interview he gave to online news website ABC in July 2017.
Turkish-American political commentator and main host/ co-founder of the 'The Young Turks' program, announced his candidacy from California's 25th district, running for U.S. Congress elections in 2020.
Flying to more countries than any other airline, Turkish Airlines invites all world citizens to explore the planet, with a clip that features the global journeys of three Americans who flew outside the US for the first time with Turkish Airlines.
Citizens of Turkuaz Republic are globetrotters, praised for their ability to adjust to new circumstance, which they owe to their nomadic Turkic past.
With the internet age, many post their experience on Youtube, and we take great joy in enlisting them to help them connect, share and inspire!
Please visit our Community Pages and send us your video on your experience in the International Turkish Community. We look forward to publishing your experience!