Food and adventure have always been intertwined for Rachel. Her father’s profession took her and her family to developing countries, and by age 9, she had explored and tasted the cuisines of India, Pakistan, and Brazil. So while her peers were still playing with their food, she was climbing Mango trees in Haiti and harvesting their fruit.
By age 19, Rachel had her first serving job and was hooked. Waiting tables afforded her the opportunity to fund her academic endeavors while deepening her appreciation for food and its connection to people and community.
After studying filmmaking, Rachel headed to San Francisco to fulfill her artistic interests, but was quickly distracted by its vibrant food scene. In 1997, Rachel and a business partner opened Dolores Park Café, which became an instant success. Within 3 years, she bought him out and continued to put her touch on this bustling corner of the Mission. In 2006, Rachel opened Duboce Park Café, where she furthered her quest to create comfortable neighborhood eateries bordering iconic San Francisco parks.
Her latest venture, Precita Park Café, opened in 2011 and immediately filled a void for this Bernal Heights/Mission District neighborhood. Rachel’s childhood lessons of sustenance and adventure continue to drive her passion for fresh, made-from-scratch food served and shared with San Franciscans and the greater San Francisco community.
Rachel’s enterprises, under the umbrella of the Park Café Group, support countless organizations including Frameline Film Festival, Mujeres, and Mission High School’s arts program.
“I believe that giving back is a part of doing business, and as a small business owner, it’s my responsibility to play an active role in supporting the community,” Rachel says.
Food truly is the center of the universe, or at least that’s how it felt for Dana growing up with a Jewish mother and grandmother at the helm of the family kitchen. Her childhood garden was the source for many of the food items used during holiday rituals: lessons in freshly harvested food being the most important component to a meal.
A southern girl with Jewish roots spending her summers visiting family in New York City and its world-renown restaurants; Dana was bound to end up in the restaurant industry.
Her experience working in all aspects of the food industry eventually led her to Dolores Park Café and Duboce Park Café in 2007 where she joined Rachel in the management team of both locations’ daily operations.
Dana’s executive skills were again put to use when she and Rachel opened Precita Park Café in 2011. Dana continues to connect with customers and the community, helping secure a legacy that she and Rachel have created, ya'll!