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22 May, 2014

Bay Area Foodie News

Comments : 4 Posted in : Events, Restaurants on by : The Gourmez

Today on the blog, I’m talking about Cozymeal, a new Bay Area startup that got me super excited when I talked with one of the founders, Samad Nasserian, about the company. Why did it get me that excited? Let me count the reasons why:

1. Intimate meals you won’t find elsewhere. Cozymeal puts on dinners and cooking classes for Bay Area diners looking to avoid the restaurant scene, whether they want the assurance their meal was prepared from scratch that day or they want a more relaxed, and less noisy, alternative night out. Customers can browse Cozymeal’s attractive website (note: all pics are theirs except for the screenshots) to find a chef putting on a party in their own home. Cuisines range from German—

Traditional German Currywurst

–to Peranakan

Peranakan food prepared and served on a boat

–to Persian

Traditional Persian eggplant dish

–to about everything in between. And if you want in on the preparation fun, you can sign up for a cooking class rather than just a meal and have a hand in producing those beautiful dishes.

Italian cooking class


Currently, Cozymeal has 36 meals and cooking classes to choose from. And their dining locations are all over the Bay from San Leandro to North Beach—even on a houseboat in the Berkeley Marina!

2. It’s affordable—no really, I mean affordable! The #1 thing that puts me off from companies offering similar dining experiences is how expensive they usually are. More often than not—and in areas much more affordable than the Bay Area—I’ve seen single evening cooking classes start at well more than $100 per person. For Cozymeal, the most expensive ones are just shy of that mark at $95, but they run all the way down to $40—try to beat that! Dinners are even more affordable, with a range from $12 to $50, and those are for multicourse meals!

Awatif’s African and Middle Eastern menu for $29

Awatif’s African and Middle Eastern menu for $29

How do they keep prices so low? It’s not actually by design—Samad tells me the chefs are the ones who price their dinners. Some do want to make a profit, but some do it just for the sheer joy of entertaining. Chefs, my hats are off and wallets open to you. Which brings me to my next reason to love Cozymeal,

3. Whether you want classically trained chefs or the comfort of a home-cooked meal, Cozymeal has you covered. Roughly 50% of the chefs are professionals and 50% are home cooks who love to entertain. All of Cozymeal’s participating hosts are fully vetted by the company, meaning their meals are tasted and party locations inspected to make sure they adhere to Cozymeal’s standards. Those hosts include experts like Douglas, who trained with the French Laundry’s founders and has over 30 years of experience—


–or Samantha who can make a mean baked potato bar.

4. Dining solo or planning a group night out? No problem! Often, dinners like these mean the attendees are responsible for buying the chef’s service all on their own, contributing to that normally high expense. If you want to take over a whole evening with your friends, Cozymeal can accompany you! But if you’re on your own, you can still take advantage of their dinners. Each one has a minimum and a maximum number of guests, which you can see in the details tab of the meal profile.


Finally, I bring you #5. Their website is gorgeous. It’s beautifully designed, full of breathtaking pictures of each meal’s dishes, the complete menus so there’s no surprises sprung, and reviews from past guests. Plus, it’s easy to navigate!

Cozymeal list

I’m really excited for Cozymeal, and I’m looking forward to attending a bloggers’ dinner with them in a couple of weeks, hosted by Samad’s co-founder Arnie. Why yes, I will be reporting back on the experience. In the meantime, if you’re looking for a unique dining experience restaurant-free, check them out. And if you’re a chef or home cook who loves entertaining, they are recruiting! Doesn’t matter where you are in the Bay, Cozymeal is interested! Just contact Samad and they’ll begin their vetting process with you!


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