December 4, 2023


Than a Food Fitter

Former White House Advisor Helps Local Cooks Make a Meaningful Income By Selling Homemade Food To Their Communities

2 min read

Marketplace Featuring Authentic Meals from Local West African, Pakistani, Latin American, Indian & Japanese Cooks Expands into the Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia Area

Published: Nov. 18, 2021 at 2:30 PM CST|Updated: 14 hours ago

WASHINGTON, Nov. 18, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Shef, a platform that enables cooks to sell homemade meals to their local communities, today announced that it has expanded its fast growing business to Washington D.C., Maryland, and Virginia (DMV). Since its founding in 2019 by Obama White House Tech Advisor and co-founder, Alvin Salehi, and two-time food startup entrepreneur, Joey Grassia, Shef has served over one million meals across the United States. Passionate and talented cooks around the country have found a world of hope and possibility on the platform, and now those across the DMV will have an opportunity to make a meaningful income while sharing their culture and authentic recipes with their neighbors.

Shef Expands Into D.C, Maryland, and Virginia, Bringing Authentic Homemade Meals from Local...
Shef Expands Into D.C, Maryland, and Virginia, Bringing Authentic Homemade Meals from Local Cooks to Your Front Door

Maryland, Virginia and D.C. are host to a vibrant diaspora of cultures and Shef’s cooks reflect this diversity, with cuisines ranging from Northern Indian and Jamaican-American dishes to Turkish and Peruvian. For example, for the first time since arriving in the US, Kenyan cook Marni Muhati felt she could proudly share a meaningful part of her African heritage with friends and neighbors. Similarly, Carla Mantecon, a transplant from Guadalajara, Mexico, prepares the very family recipes that brought her own loved ones together around her family’s dinner table; she hopes to bring that same authenticity to dinner tables across the region.

“As the sons of immigrants, Joey and I watched our parents work incredibly hard to build a better life for their kids,” said Alvin Salehi, co-founder of Shef. “There are millions of people just like them looking for new opportunities to support their families, and we’re excited to finally bring Shef to the DMV — a beautiful region I had the privilege of calling home for many years.”

Currently, there are more than 16,000 applicants on the waitlist to cook and sell food on Shef. Local cooks can visit to sign up and get started.

About Shef 

Founded in 2019 by first-generation Americans Alvin Salehi and Joey Grassia, Shef is a platform that enables cooks to sell homemade meals to their local communities. The service is currently available in several markets across the United States, including San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Seattle, Chicago, Houston, Austin, Boston, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. To order food from a local cook in your area, or for more information on how to become a cook on the platform, visit

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