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Oakland Spice

Chef Preeti Mistry combines Indian heritage and activism.


Oakland has been experiencing a queer culinary boom for some time, and one of the brightest stars on the scene is chef and restaurateur Preeti Mistry of Navi Kitchen, an Indian- inspired pizza cafe, and Juhu Beach Club, a homey-yet-hip bistro specializing in Indian street food. Oakland is a beacon for artists and activists, and the birthplace of the revolutionary socialist Black Panther Party. “It’s always attracted people who are living their lives the way that want to and not the way that other people prescribe,” says Mistry. “I love my chosen family here, I love the community. Queer women of color have lived here for decades, way before it was cool. There’s a local pride that comes from a ‘yes we can’ place as opposed to a ‘yeah we are’ place.”

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