Sarma is a restaurant & bar where food, drink and music come together in a vibrant celebration of the good things in life. Modeled after the traditional meyhanes of Turkey, the menu is a large selection of small, seasonal plates ( meze ) that are designed to be shared. The flavors represent the Mediterranean and encourage food-friendly cocktails, craft beers or a glass of wine from a small but carefully selected list.
Sarma – wrapped; enveloped; rolled up; a bundle of food that is bite sized and served as a meze. An embrace.
Throughout the eastern Mediterranean & the Middle East, Meze is a common way to start a meal or a party. Just as in Spain with tapas, many different small plates are shared with family and friends for a variety of small tastes. The point of snacking this way is to make the experience at the table as long as possible allowing time to sip, share thoughts, and hang out. Spice & herb combinations are the secret to giving these little dishes their big flavors without making them heavy.
Cassandra (Cassie) Piuma is a native of Duxbury, Massachusetts. She graduated with honors from Johnson & Wales (where she met her husband and now business partner at Sarma) and completed her final semester at the Sunrice Academy in Singapore. She honed her culinary skills at the acclaimed AL Forno in Providence, Rhode Island, and then moved to Boston in 2002, where she worked at the French bistro, Sel de la Terre, and as a sausage maker for Barbara Lynch at the Butcher Shop. She spent the next 11 years with James Beard Award winning chef Ana Sortun at Oleana, learning the nuances of Middle Eastern cooking and working her way up the ranks from line cook to sous chef and ultimately chef de cuisine for her final 7 years. In 2013, Cassie opened her dream restaurant, Sarma, in Somerville, Massachusetts (with her husband, Matthew Piuma, and business partners Ana Sortun & Gary Griffin) where she cooks her version of modern Middle Eastern meze in a casual, upbeat, neighborhood setting.
Seattle-born Ana Sortun graduated from LaVarenne Ecole de Cuisine in Paris. After many visits to Turkey she developed a love of Eastern Mediterranean spices & passion for using only the best ingredients. The result of this union was Oleana, which opened in Cambridge in 2001. A mere four years later, Sortun won a coveted and prestigious James Beard Award for “Best Chef Northeast”. Sortun’s commitment to locally grown food took a turn for the personal when a farmer selling spinach turned up at the back door of Oleana one day. “I knew then that I would marry him,” Sortun says. Since 2006, Siena Farms has been providing the restaurant with most of its fresh, organic produce. It is owned and farmed by the chef’s husband, Chris Kurth, and named after the couple’s daughter.