KUWAIT: Marco Fiorot, an Italian chef and first Italian owner of a restaurant in Kuwait, visited Kuwait Times and Kuwait News on Thursday, where he toured some departments, played a food game with team members and engaged in a conversation with Kuwait Times, talking about his background and revealing the inspiring success stories behind his restaurants.
He shared how he never expected to become a chef, as his childhood dream was to become an engineer, which he pursued in college. But, whilst working as a parttime waiter at an Italian restaurant during his college years, he realized his passion had suddenly shifted towards the hospitality industry.
After graduating, Fiorot worked as a fulltime waiter for a few more years, which enriched him with new skills and knowledge of the industry. With the vast amount of experience that he gathered in Italy, he decided to add his fingerprints to the Kuwaiti market in 2016 by opening the first branch of his restaurant Vigonovo, named after his beloved hometown in northern Italy.
“You breathe Italy in it, from the music to the style...it’s like you are walking in Florence and seeing one of those tiny shops on the left and right that maybe have 10 tables only, where you get to have the very traditional taste of things,” he said.
Fiorot described his restaurant as a very cozy place that spreads warm vibes in every part of it, where a personalized experience is provided for everyone, as there’s a human connection between the staff and the customers. “Our customers, we know them by name; we know if they want sparkling water or natural water; we know if they like spaghetti or Bolognese... we know everybody’s taste. It’s like a family,” he said.
In 2021, Fiorot opened his second restaurant, Giulia, which he dedicated to his younger sister. The significance of this restaurant’s name goes back to a special memory. “When I was 7 years old, I went to my mother and told her, ‘Mama I want a sister and I want to call her Giulia’,” he reminisced. According to him, one can easily feel the romantic and sweet atmosphere of the place by looking at his sister’s photos on the wall or by spotting the logo made of hearts that is printed on the restaurant banner, on the serving plates and even on staff uniforms.
Marco's Burger Shop marks the latest project that he is about to proudly bring to the market of Kuwait in less than a week. Fiorot chose to define it as “not too fast fast-food”, as he believes it will be very distinctive from other classic fast-food restaurants, providing fresh and real food. He pointed out that everything other than the meat and cheeses will be handcrafted in the restaurant’s kitchen, from bread to ketchup to mayonnaise, etc. “I am very excited to open it because it will be something new to the market for people to enjoy something different,” he said.
Fiorot believes that Italian cuisine is the second top choice for Kuwaiti citizens and residents, and he aims to always keep adding value to the city by bringing authentic food and creating remarkable experiences for them. Fiorot sent this final message to his customers: “There’s nothing I love more than serving people and creating memories...If today is your birthday and you celebrate it at my restaurant, it’s my responsibility to make this memory unforgettable. So, we entertain people, we deliver emotions. This is what I love.”