Reem Assil

Reem Assil headshot

Reem Assil is a Palestinian-Syrian chef based in Oakland, California and founder of Reem's California, a nationally-acclaimed restaurant & commissary kitchen in Oakland and Reem's California Mission in San Francisco, inspired by Arab street corner bakeries and the vibrant communities that surround them. Reem has garnered an array of culinary accolades, including James Beard Semifinalist nods for Best Chef: West (2018-19) and Finalist for Outstanding Chef (2022). Reem's newest book, Arabiyya: Recipes from the Life of an Arab in Diaspora, is a collection of 100+ bright, bold recipes influenced by the vibrant flavors and convivial culture of the Arab world, filled with moving personal essays on food, family, and identity and mixed with a pinch of California cool. Reem sits at the intersection of her three passions: food, community, and social justice. She uses food to invoke the central virtue of her Arab culture ⁠— hospitality ⁠— to build strong, resilient, and connected community. Reem is a graduate of the competitive food business incubator program, La Cocina, business leadership program Centro Community Partners, and business accelerator program ICA: Fund Good Jobs.

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