A few years ago, Nikeisah Newton noticed something strange in her girlfriend's car. The woman she was dating at the time—who, as a stripper and a rugby player, lived an active life—had a vehicle full of empty fast-food bags.
"Her job requires her to be in shape and not eat food like that," Newton says. "She was a healthy person in general, so I was just like, 'What are you doing?'"
There are few late-night food options in Portland, let alone healthy late-night options, and Newton's girlfriend didn't feel comfortable going anywhere sit-down after work. So Newton began cooking vegetable-rich comfort food for her to take to the strip club. "I guess it was just wanting to nourish her," she says. "Her co-workers would make comments, and she was kind of just like, 'You know, they would pay you if you delivered this food.'"
The experience eventually inspired her to launch Meals 4 Six Inch Heels, which brings healthy, flavorful meals to sex workers at their job. Orders are placed via direct message through Instagram (@meals4heels), then cooked and personally delivered by Newton herself.
Newton launched Meals 4 Six Inch Heels in late January. Now, she spends weekdays planning her menu and sourcing ingredients from local farms, and her weekend nights driving meals to strip clubs around Portland, from Club 205 in deep Southeast to Reveal Lounge in the West Hills. Currently, her most popular dish is the Freegan Vegan, a bowl of roasted plantains, brown rice cooked with tomatillos and cilantro, and roasted apples rubbed with lime juice and curry powder.
"I just want to bring different, eclectic flavors to Portland in general, and especially to the sex worker community," says Newton. "Everybody should be excited about food, and everybody should have access to healthy food."