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Inside Besharam’s Sassy New Space in the Minnesota Street Project

The former Alta MSP just got some new character

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Besharam, chef Heena Patel’s new home for Gujarati flavors and Californian ingredients inside the Minnesota Street Project art gallery space, is gearing up for its first dinner service on Thursday, May 31. The restaurant, which grew out of Patel’s cooking at food incubator La Cocina, launched for lunch earlier this month in the former Alta restaurant space, part of a new partnership with Alta Group founder Daniel Patterson. There, with some splashy new touches — most obviously a saucy mural by artist Maria Qamar — Besharam is reportedly doing a brisk daytime business. Take a look inside, and peruse the dinner menu below.

As with Alta’s Market Street location, which the Alta/Patterson team swiftly reimagined as a new home for Nigel Jones’ Caribbean restaurant Kaya, Alta MSP closed just briefly to become Besharam. The layout (as originally designed by Patterson himself, with 45 seats and an open kitchen) hasn’t changed, and the restaurant is staffed by much of the same team as before — with the notable addition of Patel’s husband, Paresh, who is taking a front of house role and assisting beverage director Aaron Paul.

The biggest difference at the new restaurant is, of course, what’s on the plates. But that’s not just Patel’s food, such as blue cheese naan, khaman with chutney, and fish moilee with coconut curry. It’s also more of Qamar’s wry artwork, as she designed some of the plates — and it’s also the sentiment that underlies both the food and the art.

Besharam, Urdu for shameless, aims to be unabashed, with “spicy food for spicy girls,” as Qamar’s plates at Besharam declare. “That’s MISS Besharam to you!.”

A plate designed by Maria Qamar at Besharam
The dining room at Besharam, dominated by a bright mural
Inside the newly refreshed space at 1275 Minnesota Street
A dinner spread at Beshara including channa, shakarpa, quinoa puda, and fish moilee
Khaman with coconut chutney
Fish moilee with coconut curry and cumin rice
Quinoa Puda
The chef Heena Patel standing outside of her restaurant Besharam in May 2018
Heena Patel outside Besharam
Patricia Chang
Inside the dining room space, with 45 seats
Another view on the dining room
Looking into the restaurant from within the art gallery space
Looking into the art gallery from tables at Besharam
Outside the Minnesota Street Project

Starting May 31, Besharam is open for dinner from Tuesday through Saturday, 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.


1275 Minnesota Street, , CA 94107 (415) 580-7662 Visit Website
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