Downtown diners can now buy fried chicken, incredibly hot plantains, vegan birria tacos and more from up-and-coming area chefs at the BellaVista cafe in Stockton each and every weekday.

Four chefs picked for their enterprising organization pitches and qualified by the nonprofit Stockton Neighborhood Kitchen area officially released their restaurants at BellaVista’s Worldwide Food Hub on Thursday.

Jennifer Vazquez, owner of Comida De Jen serves some food to Deanne Green at the grand opening of the Stockton Community Kitchen International Food Hub at the Bella Vista restaurant in downtown Stockton.

‘I preferred to remain in my community’

“I saw a need for much more vegan alternatives in my community,” reported Jennifer Vazquez, a chef whose small business, Comida de Jen, serves vegan Mexican cuisine at the food stuff hub.

Due to the fact she was 15, Vazquez had labored as a cafe server. But when the pandemic hit, Vazquez shed her position.

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Close to the exact same time, Vazquez turned fascinated in meals pop-ups. She applied for the Group Kitchen area application and acquired teaching in working a foods business enterprise, from accounting to legal matters.

Now, Vazquez has the prospect to share vegan alternatives with the neighborhood from a substantial, totally furnished restaurant house in the coronary heart of downtown Stockton.

“I required to continue to be in my community,” she said. “Not only was (the room) in Stockton, but inside downtown Stockton … (which) has so significantly probable.

“It felt like these types of a dream.”

The Neighborhood Kitchen focuses in individual on mentoring females, according to the program’s founder Rima Barkett, who also owns BellaVista. 

“I assume that gals maintain the family collectively,” Barkett explained. Women’s position will have to increase for ailments in Stockton as a total to increase, she mentioned.

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Probable chefs go by way of a in-depth application procedure, and reps of the program check out their cooking, Barkett mentioned. Then, they undertake a yr-prolonged coaching system.

“Setting up a new factor is not easy,” she mentioned. “We have to have to spread the word.”

In addition to in-human being dining, you can buy supply and takeout from the Worldwide Food Hub by way of its menu site.

The application to take part in the Local community Kitchen can be found listed here.

Stockton Mayor Kevin Lincoln takes a bite of food prepared at the grand opening of the Stockton Community Kitchen International Food Hub at the Bella Vista restaurant in downtown Stockton.

If you go

What: Stockton Neighborhood Kitchen’s Worldwide Meals Hub

Where by: 110 N. El Dorado St., Stockton

Hrs: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday


History reporter Aaron Leathley covers business, housing, and land use. She can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @LeathleyAaron. Support community news, subscribe to The Stockton Record at 

By Taba