Chefs Panel with Yelp — Surviving & Thriving As Bay Area Restaurateurs
“Cooks are leaving in droves because they can't afford to live here...”

For episode 49, we’re featuring a live recording, straight from Yelp HQ, where a panel of esteemed chefs and restaurateurs tell us what it’s like to tough it out in the Bay Area.

The idea for the panel came out of a discussion with chef Mark Liberman, the day Menu Stories captured his and Matt Semmelhack's story in our AQ episode. Liberman was already thinking about the struggles he was facing as a chef and restaurateur (AQ has since closed) and knew his colleagues were working through similar struggles — his hope was to get chefs in a room together to talk about the realities of life as a Bay Area restaurateur. When Yelp approached Menu Stories to do an event for local restaurant owners and chefs, we knew this was the thing to do. Listen to this episode to hear the full panel discussion and check out the video of the panel, along with photographs from the event, below.

Special thanks to Yelp for providing the audio and video for this episode, Castagna for providing the delicious food, Lo-Fi Aperitifs for refreshing cocktails, and to our panelists: chefs Suzette Gresham (of Acquerello), Mark Liberman (of MÄGO), and Fernay McPherson (of Minnie Bells), and general manager Yuka Ioroi (of Cassava). Be sure to subscribe to Menu Stories to get more episodes like this one delivered to your inbox.

The panelists discuss big topics affecting the Bay Area restaurant scene Guests file in to the event Yelp's event space hosts hundreds of people from the restaurant community each week
Guests sign in at the welcome table at Yelp Rebecca Goberstein greets chef Suzette Gresham
Menu Stories host Rebecca Goberstein prepares for the panel
Beer cools in a bucket Raspberry tartlets catered by Castagna
Spoonful of bites, courtesy of Castagna Castagna's chef shares a bite with us Castagna's bite sized ham quiches Lo Fi Aperitifs served beverages at the event Local restaurateurs gather at Yelp HQ to hear from Cassava GM Yuka Ioroi and from chefs Mark Liberman, Suzette Gresham (of Acquerello), and Fernay McPherson (of Minnie Bell's).

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