Atchana’s Homegrown Thai
Background: Capellini’s family has owned Thai restaurants for more than three decades (including local favorite Siam Lotus Room) and Capellini grew up working in the business.
What first inspired your love of food/cooking?
My family. My parents had a restaurant in Thailand and when we moved to America they worked and saved their money until they could open a place here. The restaurant business has been a part of me for as long as I can remember.
Who (or what) has had the most influence on your cooking/ passion of owning a restaurant?
My siblings were always there, inspiring me along the way. My sister started her own food-centric business and my brother is our head chef at Atchana’s. I see how hard they work every day and that keeps me going.
What are you most proud of in your career as a chef/restaurant owner?
I’m most proud of my connections to the Miami community. My customers coming to visit us always boost my energy. Plus, we often cater for sports teams at the University of Miami, and I love being part of that.
What is your favorite thing to cook on your day off?
I love cooking holiday meals – turkey with all the sides! On other occasions I like to cook non-Thai. I have two specialties: Eggplant Parmesan and Paella.
If you weren’t in the food business what would you be doing?
I’d be allowing my husband to take me on long exotic journeys to the most civilized food destinations on the planet. Italy comes to mind…
What do you see coming up as the next big food trend in 2018?
In Miami I think people are increasingly seeking comfort and familiarity. Things are changing rapidly all across Miami. People’s favorite restaurants can, at their best, offer something eternal— a sense of home.
Atchana’s Homegrown Thai is located at 3194 Commodore Plaza, 305 774 0409. atchanas.com