For those of us who love food, learning what goes into a chef’s vision and menu is incredibly inspiring. When I was invited to meet Akasha Richmond, who’s self-named restaurant lies in the heart of Culver City, I was ecstatic to pick her brain about the colorful and vibrant menu she’s created.

The first time I dined at (and with) Akasha, it was a sensory experience. The color, the flavor, and the intention with her dishes amazed me. I walked out satisfactorily full, and very curious about her Indian-inspired roots of cooking. Guests at Akasha know her personally, and that creates an incredibly communal dining experience.

So, when we arrived one Thursday morning to hang out with her, it did not surprise me in the slightest that Akasha welcomed us into her restaurant warmly, as though she were inviting us into her home. Meeting with her feels just like that. She’s open about her style in the kitchen and loves bringing people into her story. I had to hear more.