1. Los Cilantros
Dilsa Lugo opened Los Cilantros at La Peña Cultural Center in Berkeley in May after running her own catering business under the same name for several years, cooking for high-profile clients such as Isabel Allende along the way. Lugo, who arrived in the Bay Area in 2003 speaking no English, was helped by La Cocina, the nonprofit food business incubator in San Francisco’s Mission district that works with low-income female food entrepreneurs. Now the talented cook is serving up huevos divorciados, torta para desayuno and churros for the breakfast crowd, and carnitas, albondigas and tacos at lunchtime in La Peña’s café space. There’s also a weekend brunch. (See the full Los Cilantros menu.) The Chronicle called Los Cilantros’ slow-cooked barbacoa, which comes with a smoky almond salsa, “absurdly good.” Los Cilantros is at 3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. [Read about Lugo’s path to opening her own restaurant.] (more…)
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