Everyone knows that food is at the heart of Jewish life. Our chefs do more than just cook the food; they feed the souls of our residents and patients with their passion and love for food, while paying respect to Jewish culture and tradition. The aspiration of our entire dining services team is to nurture our resident’s physical needs and spiritual well-being.

Robin Freeman
Executive Chef, Jewish Home & Rehab Center

Robin Freeman is Executive Chef for the Jewish Home & Rehab Center. She designs all the menus and recipes and conducts the production team creating meals for the residents there. She says the best part of her job is when she gets to meet with the residents and work directly with them to address their needs and preferences, sometimes in one-on-one conversations or often at the food forums residents hold regularly. Her priority in planning menus and recipes is creating nutritionally balanced, culturally diverse, and, of course, flavorful meals. Residents at the Jewish Home are big fans of dessert; Chef Robin says grilled cheese is also a particular favorite.

Robin was born and raised in Canada. She credits her grandmothers, both maternal and paternal, as having the most influence on her when she was a child. Her absolute favorite thing to eat was blueberry pie! Her career started when she was very young, working in a traditional European-run kitchen where the Executive Chef encouraged her to continue training and inspired her to become a chef. She went to cooking school in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Before joining SFCJL in September 2021, Robin was a regional traveling Chef for Seniors, traveling from Cincinnati, Ohio, to Honolulu, Hawaii.

When she’s not at work, Robin enjoys movies and spending time with friends. It might surprise people to learn that she was a drummer for four years!

Q & A

What are the things that bring you most pleasure/satisfaction as a chef?
When food brings back a fond memory. Food is love so those memories often give the same feeling as a warm hug.

If you could prepare dinner for five famous people from history, who would they be?
Julia Child, Anton Mosman, Elvis Presley, Robert Redford, and Queen Elizabeth

Liz Storm
Bakar Noshery Cook, Byer Square

Liz Storm is the cook for Bakar Noshery in Byer Square. Many people in the Bay Area know Liz as the owner of Paulie’s Pickling, the Jewish deli and Israeli street food café in Bernal Heights she ran with her husband, Paul Ashby, for ten years. After Paulie’s closed at the end of 2020, Liz really wanted to give back to the Jewish community in San Francisco. She joined the culinary team at SFCJL in June 2021.

Liz grew up Orthodox in Newton, Massachusetts. Her parents were her biggest influence growing up and her fondness for Shabbos dinners as a child is one of the reasons she loves making traditional foods that bring back memories. As a chef, Liz was entirely self-taught. She had many various industry jobs, from which she learned a lot along the way, so becoming a cook was a natural progression for her.

Bakar Noshery is the café in Byer Square, the new community center that opened with Frank Residences in September 2020. Although not yet open to the public, the Noshery is a favorite with residents and staff for its healthy twist on traditional Jewish deli food. Most popular with the residents are the Chinese chicken salad, hot dogs, and breakfast items (served all day). Liz enjoys designing the weekly menu specials, where she gets to show a bit of personal flair. She says her favorite part of her job is interacting with the residents and staff and being a part of the team in the kitchen.

When she’s not at work, Liz enjoys going to Sonoma, drinking good wine, eating good food, and relaxing in a hot tub!

Q & A

What are the things that bring you most pleasure/satisfaction as a chef?
Knowing (hoping) that people are enjoying their meals. Making food that reminds people of a certain time, place, person, holiday, etc.

If you could prepare dinner for five famous people from history, who would they be?
My grandparents (maybe not so famous) and Gene Wilder

“Food is not rational. Food is culture, habit, craving and identity.”

―Jonathan Safran Foer

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