Dena Cooks

you like to eat, we like to cook








Goat Cheese Cigars



DENA COOKS is a full-service catering company specializing in Middle Eastern, Mediterranean-influenced cuisine. We take a modern approach to rustic dishes by incorporating a variety of bold spices and seasonal ingredients, for a fresh, wholesome, and visually captivating experience. DENA COOKS prioritizes understanding the tastes and preferences of each client to tailor a menu that matches the mood of the event. We aim to find a balance of beautiful, flavorful, healthy, unique, and fun food.


Bar/Bat Mitzvahs
Company Picnics
Corporate Lunches
Engagement Parties
Family Dinners
Graduation Celebrations
Holiday Parties
Office Functions
Private Parties
Rehearsal Dinners
Weekly Meals
Yoga Retreats

We work with you to create a menu for your special event, and do whatever it takes to make it a success.


About Dena

Dena Ehrlich gets as much enjoyment from cooking and making parties happen as she does from eating and getting doted on out on the town. An avid traveler, she's had the opportunity to see, taste and smell all kinds of dishes that inspire and challenge her to continue learning and experimenting with new recipes and ingredients. Having grown up in a big Jewish family, food has always been a central part of gatherings, and it was engrained that there's always room for one (or two or ten) more people at the table. Having spent the last fifteen years as a restaurant cook, recipe tester & developer, she has found her place in the catering & events world. She enjoys getting to know her clients through the process of creating customized menus tailored to their tastes and preferences, and then going onsite to be part of and watch the event unfold. Pottery, yoga, and light jogs around Lake Merritt are central to the success and sanity of Dena's personal and business life. She lives in Oakland.


California Culinary Academy, Culinary Arts
Emerson College, Writing, Literature & Publishing
Ohlone Herbal Center, Herbal Foundations