I've always been a creative person. Growing up on Maui, the island provided an endless supply of nature, art, culture, and aloha spirit to fuel all my various creative pursuits. Whether it was dancing ballet in a studio nestled into the rolling mountain slopes, collecting shells on the beach to make into jewelry, or harvesting avocados and mangoes out of our backyard for fresh guacamole and salsa, the island itself cultivated an inventive way of life.
This drive to create didn't fade when I left Hawaii in 2004 to attend Hospitality school at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The change was a culture shock at first, but soon I found that the dazzling lights of the city and the rugged arid-desert that surrounded us provided a novel and different form of influence.
As a Hotel Management major, I had the pleasure of taking a series of required culinary classes in the kitchens of the college recently ranked world's best for hospitality and leisure management. I've always enjoyed eating great food, but at UNLV I discovered my love and passion for actually preparing it myself.
In order to help pay for school, I got a job working as an Independent Buyer at Buffalo Exchange, a vintage and used clothing store where Las Vegas's most stylish came to buy, sell, and trade their fashion-forward vintage pieces as well as current trends in apparel and accessories.
Days were spent picking over bags and bags clothing searching for those perfect Gunne Sax dresses, classic pin-up and rockabilly rompers, high-waisted cut off's and Led Zeppelin tee-shirts. Nights were spent hosting front of the house for the late great, Kerry Simon at Simon Kitchen + Bar, and later at CUT by Wolfgang Puck.
Along the way, I met a boy and followed my heart to Southern California where we've made a happy home together that is filled with music, puppies, and great friends. All these years later my devotion to food & fashion hasn't wavered. Hence, the creation of this website Beccalani; one part boutique, one part art gallery, and a veritable cornucopia of recipes, stories, and goods-- made by heart, picked by hand! Mahalo for being a part of this journey with me, I'm so glad we're here.