Reem Assil is the executive chef and owner of Dyafa. Growing up in a Palestinian-Syrian household, Reem was surrounded by the aromas and tastes of food from the homeland and the connections they evoked of her heritage, family, and community.
Before dedicating herself to a culinary career, Reem worked for a decade as a community and labor organizer, and brings the warmth of community to all her events. She has worked with Bay Area’s esteemed cooperative bakery Arizmendi Bakery & Pizzeria, Grace Street Catering, Penelope Bar & Lounge, and several other local Bay Area chefs. In 2017 she graduated from the competitive food business incubator program, La Cocina and Oakland-based Accelerator business program, ICA Fund Good Jobs. It was there she defined her concept and was armed with the ideas and resources to make her dreams of opening her own successful restaurant a reality.
Daniel Patterson is a chef, restaurateur, and food writer. Born in Massachusetts, Patterson moved to California in 1989. In 1994, he opened his first restaurant, Babette’s, in Sonoma at the young age of 25, where he was named “Best New Chef” by Food & Wine in 1997. In 2000, he opened Elisabeth Daniel in San Francisco, which was nominated “Best New Restaurant” by the James Beard Foundation in 2001.
In 2006, Patterson opened Coi, where he mixed modern culinary techniques with local ingredients to create dishes that speak of place, memory and emotion. As a pioneer of a new kind of California cuisine, Patterson developed a worldwide reputation and received numerous awards and accolades, and was named “Chef of the Year” by San Francisco Magazine in 2007. In spring of 2014, Coi was recognized among the World’s 50 Best Restaurants (#49) and Daniel was awarded “Best Chef: West” by the James Beard Foundation. Coi has received two Michelin stars each year since 2008 and recieved a third star in 2017.
Building on his success at Coi, Patterson created the Alta Group to develop new restaurant concepts and provide a springboard for new chefs. Alta Group currently includes seven award-winning restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area: Coi, Alfred’s Steakhouse (2016), Alta MSP (2017), Aster (2015), Kaya (2018), Plum Bar (2010) and Dyafa (2018).
Patterson is also the co-founder of The Cooking Project, a non-profit, community-based organization dedicated to teaching kids and young adults fundamental cooking skills.
Most recently, Patterson has teamed up with Los Angeles chef Roy Choi to launch LocoL, a revolutionary fast-food chain that aims to supplant the fast-food chains and convenience stores that separate our youth from the taste of real food.
Patterson’s food writing has been published in the New York Times, Food & Wine, Financial Times, San Francisco Magazine, and Lucky Peach. He co-wrote Aroma with Mandy Aftel, and his cookbook, Coi: Stories and Recipes was published in October 2013. In 2017 Patterson again teamed with Aftel to create "The Art of Flavor."