La Cocina presents F&B: Voices from the Kitchen

F&B: Voices from the Kitchen is a storytelling project created by La Cocina that seeks to share the voices and stories from the cooks and kitchens that are less often heard. The event is a biannual performance that revolves around (and includes) food and drink on a singular topic or theme.

Proceeds from F&B will support La Cocina’s business incubator program.
6:00pm - 7:00pm Reception
7:00pm - 8:30pm Show


Xumin Liu

Born into a tea farming family, Xumin Liu is one of China's most accomplished living masters of the ancient Sichuanese art of gongfu cha, as well as a practitioner of wushu martial arts, which he studied at a Taoist monastery in the Qingcheng Mountains. Master Liu also performs face swapping, a vital part of Sichuan Chinese opera. Throughout 2018, Master Liu is conducting demonstrations in the US, splitting his time between two San Francisco restaurants, Z&Y in Chinatown and Chili House in the Richmond District.

Chris Colin

Chris Colin has written about endangered pasta, Obama’s Irish roots, chimp filmmakers, ethnic cleansing, blind visual artists, solitary confinement, the Yelpification of the universe and much more for the, The New York Times Magazine, Saveur, and Pop-Up Magazine, among other publications. He’s a contributing writer for California Sunday Magazine and Afar, and the author of What to Talk About, What Really Happened to the Class of ’93, and Blindsight, named one of Amazon’s Best Books of 2011. In 2015, he co-wrote This Is Camino, which was nominated for a James Beard award.

Binita Pradhan

Bini Pradhan, born in Kathmandu, Nepal, has many years of experience in the Nepali Food Industry and a Bachelor’s degree in Hotel Management Catering. She started at La Cocina in 2013, and now is the owner and chef of Bini’s Kitchen. You can find her food at 1 Post Street, Whole Foods Markets, Off the Grid Fort Mason, Drives Market, The Market in Twitter Building, CUESA Ferry Building, CUESA Jack London Sq., Off the Grid Presidio, and catering and events.

Jessica Battilana

Jessica Battilana writes about food and the people who make it. Her first solo cookbook, Repertoire: All the Recipes You Need, was just released this spring. She has co-authored five cookbooks: Vietnamese Home Food, with Charles Phan, chef/owner of the Slanted Door; Tartine Book 3, with Tartine owner Chad Robertson; Sausage Making: A Definitive Guide with Recipes, a collaboration with butcher Ryan Farr; Home Cooked, with Anya Fernald; and Home Grown: Cooking From My New England Roots with Matt Jennings, chef of Boston’s Townsman. Jessica also writes a bi-monthly column for the San Francisco Chronicle Food Section.

Emma Rosenbush

Emma Rosenbush is the general manager at Cala in San Francisco, Chef Gabriela Cámara’s outpost of the renowned seafood restaurant Contramar in Mexico City. Before opening Cala, Emma stared an experimental pop-up restaurant in Mexico City called Pichón with Niki Nakazawa (who we interviewed on Delicious Revolution #9) and Kenny Curran. Prior to her time in Mexico, she worked at the Prison Law Office in Berkeley, where she decided that if she was ever responsible for hiring workers, she would hire former inmates. She is now leading the way in welcoming formerly incarcerated individuals into full-time, visible positions at Cala.

Rosa Martinez

Rosa Martinez was born in a small town in the state of Oaxaca. As a child, she loved cooking with her mother. In 1989, she left Mexico for San Francisco with a dream of one day cooking for many people and sharing with them her culture. Now, many years later, after a long journey that included all sorts of jobs serving others, she is an entrepreneur in the La Cocina incubator and can see a path to fulfilling her dream.

Shanna Farrell

Shanna Farrell is an interviewer at UC Berkeley's Oral History Center, where she specializes in contemporary cocktail culture. She is the author of Bay Area Cocktails: A History of Culture, Community and Craft and her writing has appeared in PUNCH, Imbibe, Life & Thyme, The San Francisco Chronicle, and Edible San Francisco. You can occasionally hear her voice on various podcasts, like Gravy.

Stefanie Demong

Stefanie Demong is a writer, creative strategist, and amateur illustrator based in San Francisco. Before going freelance, Stef spent over eight years at Tipping Point Community, a non-profit that fights poverty in the Bay Area.

Randy Fertel

Randy Fertel is a writer, author, teacher, and philanthropist and is the author of A Taste of Chaos: The Art of Literary Improvisation and The Gorilla Man and the Empress of Steak: A New Orleans Family Memoir. He has taught English literature at Harvard, Tulane, LeMoyne College, the University of New Orleans and the New School of Social Research. He has contributed to many publications, including The New York Times, NPR, Smithsonian, Kenyon Review, Gastronomica, Esquire, among others. The son of the founder of Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Randy is president of both the Fertel Foundation and the Ruth U. Fertel Foundation.

Jonathan Kauffman

Jonathan Kauffman is a features writer for the SF Chronicle’s food section, reporting on food culture, such as the history of Burmese restaurants in SF or the effects of gentrification on practically everything we eat. He was a restaurant critic for 11 years in the Bay Area and Seattle as well as the SF editor for Tasting Table. His writing has won both a James Beard and an IACP award. This year, his book Hippie Food: How Back-to-the-Landers, Longhairs, and Revolutionaries changed the way we eat was released to great acclaim.


La Cocina

La Cocina is a ground-breaking business incubator designed to reduce the obstacles that often prevent low-income food entrepreneurs from creating successful and sustainable small businesses. By providing affordable, shared, commercial kitchen space, an array of industry-specific technical assistance and services, and access to market opportunities and access to capita, La Cocina works with entrepreneurs as they launch, grow, and formalize successful food businesses. We focus primarily on women from culturally diverse communities and immigrant communities. Our vision is that our program participants will become economically self-sufficient and contribute to a vibrant and diverse economy doing what they love to do.