Arda Türkmen is an entrepreneur and chef with many culinary accolades to his name. Born in Istanbul, he studied in Saint Benoit French High School after which he graduated from Istanbul’s Bilgi University in business and performing arts. He started his career organising student tours and simultaneously ran a quirky eatery from 1998-2000. By 2003, he was already a rising star who attracted the attention of international celebrities. Later that year, he founded Rocket Catering (Roka Davet), a firm serving food and drink companies.
In 2008, Arda opened his own restaurant, Leblon at Asmalimescit in central Turkey, and sold Rocket Catering (Roka Davet) in 2012, closely followed by the opening of his second restaurant, Forneria, in 2013. He brought innovation to Forneria, introducing the ‘from the stone oven to the table’ concept where traditional ingredients and original flavours were blended together. By 2014, he closed Leblon and focussed more on writing and TV presenting.
His recipes are published in various titles such as ‘Seninle,’ ‘Sabah Gazetesi,’ and ‘La Cucina Italiana.’ He is seen on CNN TURK every weekend presenting ‘Arda’s Kitchen.’ In 2013, Arda worked on a TV programme, ‘Inside the Middle East,’ for CNN International showcasing the beauty of Turkey culture and cuisine. In October 2014, Arda started the TV Show called ‘Ver Fırına’ (Put It In The Oven) where he is also one of the jury members.