Interview: Vassilis Bonios | Photo: Stavros Niflis
I just do what I like to do
and try to do it as best as I can
How does it feel to have made a dream come true on your island at such a young age and actually on your first go?
I’ve never thought about it this way, I just do what I like to do and try to do it as best as I can.
What is your personal philosophy behind the success of Yemeni?
We focus on local culinary traditions and viability. That’s why we collaborate with local producers so that we can combine food enjoyment with environmental concerns.
Tell us about your vegetable garden and your dream to create a model farm/guest house on Paros.
We cultivate local varieties, free of chemicals and according to seasonal suitability. The farm I’m dreaming of will include a cold press for olives, a vineyard and a small winery so that guests can get involved in all phases of food production and experience every aspect of authentic Paros, which is largely its land and its produce.
Do the state and its relevant ministries support development efforts on islands like Paros? Have you had any access to European Funds for instance?
Not really. I have often researched the topic but have not had any response.
What is the Yemeni staff attitude towards your customers?
Politeness and honesty.
Which dish is a must for Yemeni customers this summer?
We’d rather allow customers decide for themselves.
What do your foreign customers have to say about your cuisine?
Given the fact that Yemeni is full of guests every day, they must be finding our cooking quite good. After all, foreign people are quite familiar with concepts such as seasonal produce, viability and local gastronomic traditions, all of which are the main features of Yemeni.