In Conversation with… Franco Di Tommaso

The General Manager of Sumosan’s first stand-alone flagship in the Middle East talks passion and fun.

You started your career at a very young age, what inspired you to get into the hospitality business?
I began my career in the hospitality business at the age of 18 and since then have built up a strong foundation in restaurants and hotels. I was driven with passion and dedicated to providing excellent service along with having lots of energy from travelling internationally and meeting new people, whether it was colleagues or guests.
I started following my elder brother to keep my summer busy, while studying the rest of the year, initially with seasonal jobs in luxury hotels in Italy and Switzerland. I became fascinated with the high standard of service we were providing to all our guests. I learned about discipline and consistency, which is very important in hospitality but, at the same time, I had a lot of fun, travelled around the world and met amazing people from different countries. It’s a career that requires a lot of passion and effort, however there are also lots of opportunities to grow and develop.

What would you say makes Sumosan different from other Japanese restaurants?
As many of our guests say, ‘Sumosan is one of kind’.
It’s well known for its consistency in serving exceptional standards of modern Japanese cuisine. Here in Doha, the chefs came up with new creations on the menu, adapted to local taste, for example, a lot of people in the Middle East do not like to eat raw food. We also have an amazing team that ensures an attentive service and a remarkable experience.

Why did you choose Doha for your first Sumosan in the Middle East?
I’ve been working in the Middle East for more than 10 years, mainly in the UAE. The opportunity presented itself and I grabbed it. I personally think Qatar is the country to be in at the moment, Doha is a great city to live with the family and Sumosan is definitely an excellent addition to the dining scene here, especially where we are located, in downtown Msheireb.

What plans does Sumosan have to expand in the region?
Sumosan is fast evolving in this dynamic region. Riyadh has just opened, we’ll be opening in Dubai by the end of this year and Bahrain will open by the middle of next year. I`m also expecting more openings in other countries.

What dishes would you recommend to a first-timer to Sumosan?
I personally love food in general and I am in love with Japanese cuisine. There are plenty of dishes I can recommend to a firsttimer in Sumosan, some of my personal classic favourites are: the famous Lobster Salad, Albemarle roll, the grilled creamy spicy king crab and Wagyu sando. We have quite a few options on the menu to satisfy different palates. ✤