Sollip : Chef duo father and daughter James as well as Georgia Sommerin are so in the same boat that they communicate with each other using just eye contact. Their calm and peacefulness is so impressive as they work in the kitchen open of their family-owned establishment located in Penarth, Wales – appropriately called Home that customers are “mesmerised” watching them, said James Sommerin, 43.
He refers to his daughter, who is 23, in the role of “my right hand”. “We don’t necessarily have to talk to each other,” he explained. “It’s just a glance. She’s aware that I’ve got her back and the reverse is also true.”
This week, just six months after its opening the restaurant, it was able to celebrate the moment of its life when it received the debut Michelin Star. It was among three British establishments that were awarded the first Michelin star that was solely run by family members, which is not the easiest feat in a sector that is which is notorious for its work load and high levels of stress.
Two other restaurants located in London in London – Evelyn’s Table, run by three brothers and Sollip which is run by an unmarried couple was recognized for the first times by the guide for this year. At the midst of turmoil for the industry, they all are rare successes that have opened at the beginning from the outbreak.
“The pandemic made people realise what was important to them and encouraged them to follow their dreams – and, for many, that was to spend more time with the ones they care about most,” an Michelin spokesperson explained, noting that kitchens that are run by families are usually “calmer, quieter places, where everyone works in harmony”.
The guide says that Home that it is “staffed almost exclusively by family members”. The small group of six is comprised of James’s wife, Louise, who leads the front of house team. It also includes their daughter , Angharad (they also have a 11-year-old daughter named Elin) along with Louise’s sibling Cath. The restaurant’s “surprise” menu is seasonal and is based on local produce.
It’s not his first Michelin star – he has was awarded one at his previous restaurant in Penarth that was shut down because of the pandemic and also at The Crown at Whitebrook, where Chef Sommerin was the head chef The one he has now feels distinct. “It’s more special than it ever was before,” he told me. “Just simply because it’s us as a whole There are no other investors and no business partners absolutely nothing. We run it entirely and it’s an incredible accomplishment.”
It was a stressful time to begin a new company in the midst of the pandemic during which the family cooked meals for NHS employees – and having been through “excruciating pain” with the closing of James’s previous company. They decided to go about things slow and start with Home which has a capacity of 24 customers. It has so far been a huge hit. The show wouldn’t be as successful without Georgia the actress, he added adding that the success is hers just as it is his.
In describing her being one of his top friends, he noted that “we work exceptionally well together”. They get inspiration from Spanish father-daughter team Juan Mari and Elena Arzak who they first met when they dined at their famous 3-star restaurant located in San Sebastian. “Is her daddy’s child? I’m not sure. I treat her as an mate in a way. My daughter is my child, and I’m here to guard her, and I’m in her care and also to nurture her.”
Georgia she is the sous chef of the restaurant is a celebrity as a chef in her own right. In the year 2020, she was just 20 years old, she became the youngest contestant on British Broadcasting Corporation’s Great British Menu. The honor of being awarded an Michelin star at this young age, she claims that it’s “like winning an Oscar”: “To be on the map as one of those top-end fine dining restaurants in the UK is amazing.”
She began cooking with her father at the age of thirteen, creating Welsh desserts on weekends in the Crown. After she graduated from high school at the age of sixteen She briefly considered going to going to college, but decided that she’d rather be working alongside him. “The remainder is history in the end. I’ve never regretted my decision to think about anything other than that.”
Her parents are from Penarth and she currently lives in Barry.
She is a lover of all aspects of cooking, but she has a particular love for pastry. “Me and my dad, we split each section equally, so I do a bit of cooking, of sauce and garnish, and then he does a bit and we share the job.” In the next step she’s hoping to get two stars. “It’s just keep doing what we’re doing and pushing forwards.”
In London the Selby three brothers Luke, Theo and Nathaniel Selby not only received an Michelin award for the work they did on Evelyn’s Table at the Blue Posts in Chinatown but also won an award for top young chefs. The Selby brothers serve dishes that combine French with Japanese techniques in the 12 seat restaurant since the beginning of October and have worked in kitchens for more than 10 years.