We like California cuisine as much as the next Chez-Panisse-reservation-seeker. Its just that sometimes, food needs a little more soul. Luckily, Oakland is one of the most soulful places around. Our chefs have backgrounds that cross borders into Peru, Japan, Korea and the Caribbean. They've taken top-notch California ingredients and translated them into their mother country's language. Chef Preeti Mistry, who started out as a pop-up, now has the joyful Juhu Beach Club in Temescal. The formerTop Chef contender cooks Indian street food but with a modern twist. What to eat: The Holy Cow pav (sliders), made with cardamom braised short ribs. At Cosecha in Old Oakland, chef Dominica Rice-Cisneros impeccably sources ingredients for her Mexican menu philosophy she honed at former employer Chez Panisse. What to eat: Baja cod fish tacos with creamy guac on homemade tortillas. Chef Sunhui Chang is known to do Seoul food as well as soul food in his tiny FuseBOX space in West Oakland. In short, he likes to experiment, adding ingredients like black-eyed peas to a lineup of BBQ, banchan and bap sets. And even serving beignets. What to eat: Pork Belly Bap with a side of kimchi. ChefSarah Kirnon spent her childhood in Barbados eating West Indian food. She brings those family recipes to Miss Ollies, a light-filled restaurant in Old Oakland. What to eat: Skillet fried chicken with pepper sauce. Food Network chefTanya Hollandbraved the West Oakland food desert when she openedBrown Sugar Kitchen in 2007. The Southern restaurant, an instant hit, was followed with B-Side BBQ in 2011. TheHigh Noondecorated restaurant opened on the former barbecue strip of San Pablo. What to eat at Brown Sugar: Shrimp and Grits, or the world-renowned Fried Chicken & Waffles. What to eat at B-Side BBQ: St. Louis-style beef brisket barbecue with smoked yams and mac & cheese. ChefSilvia McCollow, who grew up in Nayarit, Mexico, cooks her grandmother and mothers recipes at Nido in the Jack London District. What to eat: McCollows family recipe of braised beef, or the equally alluring roasted chipotle chicken. Chef Kyle Itani executes American comfort food with Japanese ingredients and techniques at Uptowns Hopscotch. What to eat: Fried chicken is crunchy like tempura and marinated with soy and Japanese mustards. ChefVanessa Chavez brings her multiculti (Peru, Cuba, Mexico) upbringing to the plate at Temescals Latin American Cholita Linda. What to eat: Cubano sandwich with pulled pork, ham, pickles and mayo on toasted French bread.