What We Offer
Indulge yourself with an extensive menu of activities, ideas and professional contacts in the San Francisco Professional Food Society (SFPFS).
Through a variety of activities, the SFPFS offers members a year-round forum for professional growth, networking and the spirited exchange of ideas. There are many ways to benefit from membership in the SFPFS – such as attending an event, joining a committee or participating in a special interest group (SIG).
Facebook is the SFPFS’s social networking site, available to members only. It is a great way to follow the activities of fellow Food Society members, help each other out with sources, brag about one’s accomplishments, network, welcome new members and keep informed of developments in the food industry. With this site, we get to know each other online, and when we meet in person at SFPFS events and programs, we have plenty of great conversation starters.
All the information on Facebook is user-generated by our members, so it’s a conversation rather than a website. Members have posted job descriptions, information about their favorite restaurants and book releases, questions about where to source ingredients and sources for media leads. You’ll receive an invitation to join the SFPFS Facebook group when you become a member of the Food Society.
The new and improved website is a useful tool for members to access information about SFPFS, including a calendar of upcoming events, event registration, articles about recent events, member profiles and a members-only section where you can download the membership directory, renew your membership, post and review job openings and more. Our online directory section (for members only) allows members to search for other members by name, profession, company name or location.
Board of Directors and Committees
Our thirty-four years of success is directly related to the dedication and commitment shown by our board and committee members. Please get involved and volunteer with one or more of the committees listed below. Don’t hesitate to call committee chairs and board members if you have a comment or question. And please call if you wish to join a particular committee. Should you wish to serve on the SFPFS Board of Directors, begin by taking an active part in a committee that interests you. This is the best way to get to know other members and learn how functions and services come to life. Through committee involvement, coupled with dedication and willingness, you will build the background that prepares you for a board position.
The annual SFPFS Directory is an indispensable tool for anyone in the food industry. It provides detailed contact information for all members, as well as an exhaustive compilation of local and national culinary groups.
Directory Use: Each member receives one hardcopy of the directory for his or her personal use, and has access to the online directory only available by logging in at our website. Members may also purchase the SFPFS mailing list for a one-time use for the food, wine, or hospitality industries upon the approval of the Board of Directors. To purchase, contact the Administrator for an application.
OTHER BENEFITS FOR MEMBERS:
Leadership & Experience
By joining one of many committees, members help to shape the direction of the SFPFS while making close connections with other food professionals. Committee members plan both large and small events, connect with luminaries in the food community, direct outreach efforts, gain experience writing for the web and newsletter and more.
Draeger’s Cooking Schools: 10% discount on classes for you and one guest. Redeem by registering at Draeger’s at 650.685.3704.
Spanish Table: 20% discount.
Sur La Table: 10% for culinary professionals.
Williams-Sonoma: 20% discount – use the following directions.
Scroll to the bottom of the Williams-Sonoma web page; under Resources, click For Professional Chefs -> Apply Now.
You will be required to submit two qualifying documents from the list below.
- Business license indicating profession within the culinary industry.
- Business card indicating profession within the culinary industry.
- Certificate of completion to an accredited culinary program.
- Certificate of completion to an accredited Sommelier program.
- Letter printed on restaurant letterhead, certifying role as a chef.
- Current pay stub from restaurant of employment.
- Food Service Manager Certification issued by local governing authority.
- Everything can be done online by scanning and uploading the required documents.
- You will receive a plastic card (as opposed to a paper card supplied by Sur la Table).
- Your card is automatically renewed on your twelve-month anniversary if you purchased anything from them in the past two years.
Giving Back to the Community
SFPFS supports community-based food related organizations, and grants scholarships to culinary students.
Professional Development: Events
The SFPFS offers a variety of services. Attending Food Society functions is the easiest way to meet fellow SFPFS members. Members receive notification of upcoming events with detailed information by email. By joining a committee, you have an even greater opportunity to network with colleagues and to become familiar with and help influence the activities and direction of the Society.
Annual General Meeting/New Member Reception
We welcome our new members and hold our annual business meeting. We begin with a reception where guests may socialize, network, and learn more about the Food Society. This is followed by the Annual General Meeting (AGM), where board members present a review of important activities and decisions from the previous year and election results for the new board are announced. Both members and guests are invited.
SFPFS Summer BBQ
Sometimes a picnic, other times an excursion to a farm or winery, and occasionally an actual barbecue, the Summer BBQ is SFPFS’s flagship annual event where members join together for a relaxed afternoon of fun, food, drink, and entertainment. The SFPFS Community Giving Committee often holds a raffle, auction, or cookbook sale to benefit food and hunger organizations and culinary scholarships. Both members and guests are invited.
Stirring the Pot
An occasional series of exclusive conversations with renowned food and wine authorities, moderated by distinguished culinary personalities such as Clark Wolf, Janet Fletcher and Flo Braker. These evening events give members a unique opportunity to interact with well-known food professionals whose contributions have changed the way we eat and drink. Past topics included “The Future of Chinese Cuisine in the US,” “Wine and Food Pairing Myths,” and “The Ups and Downs of Celebrity Chefs.” Former guests have included Martin Yan, Jacques Pepin, Marion Nestle, Michael Bauer, Marian Burros, Marion Cunningham, Thomas Keller, Hubert Keller, Michael Mina, Bradley Ogden, Gerald Asher, Dean Ornish, and Harold McGee. Following the presentation, guests enjoy a reception featuring foods associated with the presenters and/or prepared by the chef at the venue where the event is held. Both members and guests are invited.
Gather together with new friends and familiar faces to dine in some of the Bay Area’s most intriguing restaurants. From undiscovered neighborhood gems to world-class dining rooms, the SFPFS Traveling Table explores cuisines and trends ranging from vegetarian-yoga to underground chefs gone above ground to new-age Indian. Both members and guests are invited.
Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
SIGs meet in member homes on a schedule established by the group, typically every two to three months, and offer members the opportunity to explore areas of shared professional interest. They are a great way to meet members in an informal setting, keep abreast of industry trends, and find support and guidance from peers facing similar challenges in their work. Past SIGs include Food Industry Consultants, Cooking School Operators, Food Writers, Recipe Developers, and Food Photography. At present there are four active SIGs: Food Tasting SIG, Book Group SIG, Wine Tasting SIG, and Cooking SIG. Group size and format is determined by the host and group. SIGs are open to SFPFS members only.
More information about SIGs can be found here. Any member or group of members may establish a SIG on an industry-focused topic of their choice. If you would like to organize your own SIG, please contact the SFPFS Board President.
An opportunity to gather at a member’s home or other venue for a presentation and discussion focused on a specific topic of culinary or career interest, roundtables are generally small and informal, with approximately 10 to 15 in attendance. The presenter may be an SFPFS member or an invited guest. Often, members enjoy a potluck meal or refreshments following the presentation. Roundtables are open to SFPFS members only.
A chance to learn about a site, facility, company, food product, or neighborhood. They are typically led by an SFPFS member familiar with the topic, often the owner of the venue being toured. They typically last two to three hours and include a tasting or lunch of food items related to the tour. Past excursions and sessions have involved touring the Sacramento farmers’ market, Blue Bottle Coffee, and Cowgirl Creamery. Food tours are open to SFPFS members only.
Special Annual Events
Each year, the SFPFS hosts a major event which brings visibility to issues, people and trends of interest to the Bay Area food community. Past events have included Reel Food—Cooking in the Movies, held at the Castro Theatre in San Francisco, and Food Fight!—a half-day educational forum held at the Commonwealth Club to debate current thinking on food claims and choices. In addition to these public events, the SFPFS throws a popular annual barbecue for members and their guests featuring local chefs and food products.
IF YOU MUST CANCEL A RESERVATION for an event, please notify the Administrator. The SFPFS does not guarantee refunds on cancellations.