I studied in Russia. And I adore Russia. But, traveling is in my DNA. I love our planet. When traveling, I learn from its people, its history and its traditions. What I learn while travelling I translate it into new flavours in my kitchen.
Who wouldn’t?! Italy seduced me through my first cooking teacher, Chef Giancarlo Viola. He taught me every known technique to make pasta to perfection. I have returned to Italy many times since. On my last visit I spent a season in the beautiful Piemonte region where I put my pasta making skills to the test at Il Centro, a local restaurant with a Michelin star.
Ferrán Adriá was my idol. My intention was to learn from him and to be able to open a new restaurant in Moscow. However, it was too late. El Bulli was closing its doors. But I was determined, and decided to try my luck in the Adriá brothers' new restaurant: "Tickets". It was a memorable experience for a chef recently arrived from Russia who had learned from the wonderful women in his family. Overall, I spend a year and a half working in Tickets and other exceptional restaurants in Barcelona like Hisop, Taverna del Clínic, Rias de Galicia and Espai Kru. My stay with all of them fell far too short! I wanted to continue learning. And when I had the opportunity to learn in Arzak, I grabbed it!
After only 3 or 4 months of having lived and worked in the Basque Country, I realised that San Sebastian was everything I had dreamed of. A beautiful, quiet city with a special appreciation for good food, local products of the highest quality, good wines ... San Sebastian is the gastronomic capital of the planet and attracts foodies from all over the world. In addition, Spain and the Basque Country gave me the incomparable opportunity to work with internationally renowned chefs such as Juan Mari Arzak, Bittor Arginzoniz (Asador Etxebarri), Albert Adria, Ever Cubilla, and other restaurants with and without stars.
We like to call it "Gastrobar Surprise" because it reminds us of the Matrioskas we left behind in Russia. When it opens, each Matrioska reveals a new and surprising layer. Takatak is quite a lot like this: it surprises you as you enter for its eclectic decoration - combination of Russian and Basque elements. And then, it surprises you with the kindness of its team. With the high quality and inventiveness of his daily signature menu. With the organic wines from local wineries with which we maintain a close commercial relationship. With its fun pintxos ...
I like to play with the flavours of my childhood in Russia and cuisines from around the world: from the richness of fresh herbs, vegetables, flavours and aromas of Thai and Indochinese food, to the refinement and elegance of Japanese umami but, above all, the cuisine of the Mediterranean and the Basque Country, with its wide range of local produce. Everything in Takatak is designed to surprise the client's senses and provoke an unforgettable reaction.