Deniz Löktas does not believe in trends: ”Good wine will always stay trendy”
Maestro 51’s wines are not picked based on their trendiness. Importer, sommelier and entrepreneur Deniz Löktas does not believe in trends: ”They will always come and go but good wine stays.”
Turkish Deniz Löktas moved to Finland 11 years ago partly by chance. For Löktas food and wine had always been a big part of life but only when he moved to Finland he understood he wanted to work with gastronomy – particularly with wines.
”Food is a big part of Turkish culture. When I moved to Finland I started to taste different kinds of wines. I believe wine builds the culture. In everyday life when people rarely see each other, wine is like a glue that brings people together.”
Löktas had previously studied landscape architecture. He wanted to get closer to the food and wine business and started studying for an undergraduate degree in restaurant and catering. At the same time he started to host dinners and food & wine tastings.
”I always knew I wanted to work with wines. However, wines go hand in hand with food, so I needed to get knowledge of food and restaurant practices. I started working as a waitress and sommelier in top restaurants in Helsinki. It was a good way to learn from the best.”
The Turkish wines on Maestro 51’s wine list are full of surprises
Löktas is an entrepreneur from head to toe. Passion for wines isn’t enough to run a business, he says. One needs to understand not only numbers but people. Easy going and approachable Löktas has made a lot of connections from the industry. Through his reputation and connections he ended up supplying wines to Maestro 51.
“At Maestro 51 they knew that I didn’t import anything that I wouldn’t serve as a sommelier. We had a tasting together with Maestro’s crew, where I had brought a few Turkish wines. Turkish wines can really surprise. Now they’ll keep surprising people at Maestro 51, since they were picked to the wine list.”
Löktas relies on the basics: well-produced, high-quality and carefully combined food and wine will convince its audience. He doesn’t follow trends.
“I don’t believe in trends – they come and go. Some say that natural wines are now in. I like to think they are always in if they’re any good. Marketing trends will fade, but good wines won’t.
Who is Deniz Löktas?
Wine importer, sommelier and owner of Vignero who is looking for the best wines in the world to bring people together.
Löktas is inspired by
“The energy of champagne is exceptional. The aromas are intense and the bubbles dance in your mouth. You can taste the calcareous soil of the province of Champagne in your mouth. It makes champagne a unique wine.”
02. Tame Impala
“I listen to Tame Impala, an Australian indie musician, when I have any problems to solve. When a song Breathe Deeper plays in the background, my problems are usually solved in about five minutes.”
“I could constantly sit near the sea, watch the boats and seagulls and smell the sea air. My love for the sea is related to my love for champagne. Long ago the soil of the Champagne region was under the sea and you can still taste the saltiness.”
Mestari Stories is a place for showcasing various masters in their respective fields, for sharing opinions, and for cherishing modern craftsmanship. These masters from across Finland are driven by their unwavering vision and virtuoso talent in their craft.