Restaurant Manager at Maestro 51: “Good food and atmosphere are the cornerstones of my work”
Maestro 51’s restaurant manager Paul Hickman started in the restaurant industry almost 30 years ago and still lives for gastronomy. Food, wine and service are Hickman’s passions, which one can see from the well-thought-out and captivating atmosphere of the Maestro 51.
Paul Hickman has worked in restaurants for almost 30 years. Like anyone, inexperienced Hickman had to work hard to get into the industry.
“I cooked a lot at a very young age since I was often home alone and had to eat something. At the age of 17, I decided to get into the restaurant industry. I grabbed the yellow pages and alphabetically went through all the restaurants in Helsinki’s largest hotels. Got lucky at letter P – Palace Hotel offered me a waitress apprenticeship. ”
Hickman, who had a dream to become a chef, hesitated to take the job as a waitress, but quickly found himself fond of customers and service work. Young Hickman had made his first break through. A demanding but rewarding apprenticeship set foundation for his long and successful career.
“After that I went to work for a luxury cruise abroad. Then I’ve worked as a chief butler at Le Manoir Quat Saisons in England. I’ve also been involved in the openings of several new restaurants and worked as a restaurant manager at Restaurant Demo.”
Expertise means not compromising on the groundwork
When Hickman saw the job advertisement for Maestro 51, he knew he was the right choice for the job.
“There was a question in the job posting asking if you consider yourself as a real master of restaurants. For me, it was easy to say yes. This position is my career’s biggest challenge. I’m excited to be part of changing the industry with Mestari.”
Hickman has planned the restaurant’s concept and food and drink menus with the rest of the crew. Before opening, the job includes a lot of planning and practical arrangements. Hickman can’t wait to start the actual work at the floor and meet the customers.
“So far, I’ve planned the wine lists, utensils, reservation systems and kitchen furniture, among other things. My job is to ensure that all plans work smoothly in practice. When Maestro 51 opens, my job will be floor management and service work. Can’t wait to meet the customers with my team.”
In 2016, Hickman was awarded at Pro-Gala as a recognition for his professionalism. For Hickman, professionalism means not compromising on the groundwork.
“Good food and atmosphere are the cornerstones of my work. Carefully planned atmosphere is created with well-thought-out music, captivating fragrance and lighting solutions. We will not compromise on these. ”
Who is Paul Hickman?
Award-winning restaurant manager and experienced restaurant expert who runs Hotel Mestari’s restaurant Maestro 51.
Hickman is inspired by:
“Restaurants, food and wine are things I couldn’t live without.”
“I am inspired by the people around me: my daughters, co-workers, clients and strangers. Everyone’s interesting. ”
“I listen to and play music all the time. From good feelings to bad ones, from day to another.”
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.