In June 2020, after a 14-year run, Montreal chef Fisun Ercan closed her beloved Turkish restaurant, Su, in Verdun and, the next month, opened Bika Farm an hour out of town on the Richelieu River. C100B wanted to know more about her plans for the restaurant.
C100B: What’s the vision?
Fisun Ercan: Having a farm was always my dream. I grew up in a Turkish village near the Aegean and everything was dependent on the seasons. When I moved here over 20 years ago, I thought the only fresh thing in winter was snow! Bika offers me a way to lead by example — to eat locally and seasonally and support local eco-responsible producers.
C100B: With spring on its way, what are you up to?
FE: I’m working in the fields and in our greenhouse. We’ve planted over 20 varieties of lettuce and herbs essential for Turkish cooking, and we’re foraging. In the test kitchen, we’re working on takeout picnic basket menus in case the dining room has to stay closed.
C100B: And moving forward?
FE: We’re committed to zero waste, ensuring that everything we grow is eaten fresh or transformed. We’re working on products for online sale — tomato sauces and pastes, preserves and dehydrated vegetables, like peppers and eggplants.
C100B: What’s your post-pandemic dream?
FE: Bringing new ideas and international inspiration to Bika. As a chef, I’m responsible for what’s happening around me and I’m driven to effect change. This farm restaurant is my platform.
Photo Credit: Daphné Caron