Native California Cuisine in Archaeology and Contemporary Culture: An exploration of the local Native cuisine of the San Francisco Bay Area

Panel Discussion | September 4 | 5:30-7 p.m. |  Bade Museum, Pacific School of Religion

 1798 Scenic Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709

 Rob Cuthrell, Independent Researcher and Director of Archaeological Resource Management, Amah Mutsun Land Trust; Vincent Medina, Cafe Ohlone by mak-'amham

 Archaeological Research Facility, Bade Museum

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Native peoples of California draw on an incredibly diverse suite of plants and animals for food. Most people know that Native cuisine includes acorns and other nuts and berries as staple foods, but often we don't hear about the rich array of plants used for salad greens, seed foods, and "Indian potatoes." Nor do we hear about the diverse wild animal resources, including deer, waterfowl, fish and shellfish.

Join us in exploring the local Native cuisine and flavors of the Bay Area through a discussion and tasting of some of the many foods that Native people of the San Francisco Bay Area have eaten for thousands of years. Speakers will discuss recent archaeological research that gives us clues to past foodways and explore how current and ethnographic knowledge of Ohlone food traditions and dietary laws help inform interpretations of the archaeological past.

This event highlights the vibrant contemporary revival of Ohlone cuisine by Cafe Ohlone by mak-'amham, recently featured on the front page of the San Francisco Chronicle’s food section. The evening will include presentations and a tasting of a variety of seasonally-available local Native foods such as wood-smoked traditional meat; acorns, greens, and berries, harvested the day before the event; and local Native teas. The food is based solely on locally-sourced and freshly-harvested resources that characterize Ohlone cuisine and that draw from the memories of elders and the kitchens of today’s tribal members.

This event is co-sponsored by the Archaeological Research Facility at UC Berkeley and the Bade Museum of Archaeology.

(See link below to purchase tickets.)

Questions? Please contact Sarah Kansa (

About the speakers:

Rob Cuthrell has worked with the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band for over a decade to conduct research on the long term history of indigenous land and resource stewardship. Rob's research integrates archaeology and historical ecology to explore how Native people used prescribed burning to maintain open and productive landscapes on the Central California Coast. Rob received his Ph.D. in Anthropology from UC Berkeley in 2013, and now works as an independent researcher and Director of Archaeological Resource Management for Amah Mutsun Land Trust.

Vincent Medina is a member of the Muwekma Ohlone Tribe, where he also serves as a Councilman representing his family’s lineage. He and Louis Trevino co-founded mak-‘amham, an organization and restaurant focused on reviving and strengthening traditional Ohlone foods and sharing them with their communities. Vincent was born and continues to live in his family’s indigenous tribal area of Halkin (Southern Oakland/San Leandro/San Lorenzo).

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  Tickets go on sale June 5. Buy tickets online

 Tasting of foods related to the lecture