Our gay-friendly town is full of visitors. June means that the Bay Area and more specifically, San Francisco, fills to the brim with folks from all over the world to observe and celebrate the events, marches and festivities that culminate in SF LGBT Pride. Bay Area Bites is noting this 42nd annual come-as-you-are love fest by telling stories from the LBGT chefs, personalities and waiters who keep us sated 365 days of the year. We’ve talked with Adam Jones, Preeti Mistry and Michael Procopio so far. Next up is a chef and culinary artist named Yasmin Golan, 33. She spends much of her time working for Calico Pie where she creates private food events and lessons. Golan is also one of the brains behind the gay pop-up Queer Food For Love. Chez Panisse, Incanto, Boulette’s Larder and Eccolo are among the restaurants where Golan trained and cooked before branching out to other artistic and food related projects. Bay Area Bites interviewed Golan via telephone and email recently.
How is your work going? What’s new?
I am an interdisciplinary culinary artist who creates one of a kind dinners and pop-ups, usually around themes involving some kind of storytelling. Some of my past projects have included Queer Food For Love, a collaborative pop-up restaurant I co-organized in San Francisco for four years with queer cooks and artists; solo projects through my catering business, Calico Pie, exploring issues like food wastes and worm composting, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and biographical dinners that tell personal stories of Diaspora and migration through food. My current project is starting a bike-up grocery in Oakland, called Humblebee Grocery, to provide week-round access to fresh produce and artisan foods east of Lake Merritt.
Where do you live? How did you and your partner meet?
I currently live with my partner Ami in Oakland. We fell in love over a picnic after I taught a cooking class in their shop. We raise animals, grow food together, worm compost, and keep bees in a multiracial, mixed-class neighborhood that we love. As a couple we are always thinking about how we can get our household more sustainable, by eliminating plastics from our lives or using reclaimed wood, or getting around by bicycle and biodiesel. Ultimately, we strive to create neighborhoods that are sustainable, too, serving local needs and creating jobs with dignity that treat people, plants, and animals with respect.