Sophia Leon

Sophia is a NYC-based writer. She specializes in writing about food and the environment.

Sophia Leon

Auntie April’s: Building Community with Chicken and Waffles

April Spears learned to ride her bike on 3rd Street in the Bayview neighborhood of San Francisco. Now, she owns two restaurants on the 3rd Street Corridor. Being successful in her home neighborhood was an important goal for Spears. “I always wanted to open a business in my community to have more positive role models for the youth,” Spears said.

Voodoo Love: Bringing the Bayou to the Bay

With VooDoo Love, Owner and Chef Eva Morris has created a menu that incorporates Louisiana-style spices while taking inspiration from Vietnamese, Spanish, and other styles of cooking. Find out more about the restaurant’s young history and the impact it is making in the Bay Area.

20th Century Cafe: The West Coast’s Slice of Eastern Europe

The marble table tops glisten, their cast iron bases grounding them to the linoleum floor. Some guests sit in Austrian bentwood chairs, others a velvety mohair banquette. Slices of honey cake, walnut apple chocolate torte, and strudel—all equally tempting—migrate from pastry case to tables via antique china plates…

Plow: Here to Stay

Joel Bleskacek thought he was done with the restaurant industry. After over a decade of working at some of the Bay Area’s finest restaurants – meeting Maxine Siu, his future wife and business partner in the process – Mr. Bleskacek pulled out…

Need a Sourdough Starter? Thorough Bread & Pastry Has You Covered

Michel Suas is a teacher, and bakers across the United States are his students. The James Beard Award winner founded the San Francisco Baking Institute (SFBI) in 1996 with his wife Evelyne. In 2008, they opened the retail bakery Thorough Bread & Pastry, whose artisan products are crafted by professional bakers that have graduated from the Institute…

Pondering the Possibilities with Zero Zero’s Bruce Hill

“New menu! Frozen pizzas and hot pastas!” Wandering down Folsom Street in SoMa, you may notice the dramatically painted windows of popular Italian eatery Zero Zero. In an ode to San Franciscan entrepreneurs past, chef and owner Bruce Hill painted his restaurant’s windows in the early days of the stay at home order…

Vive La Tarte: Long Live the Pâtissières

Since the conception of bakery and cafe Vive La Tarte, these three values have lived at the forefront of its business model. “At the core, Vive La Tarte is about building a new food chain,” co-founder Arnaud Goethals plainly stated to me over the phone. In pre-pandemic times, it was open seven days a week…

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