Whether preparing food, digging in the dirt, or baking bread, the past few years of my life have inspired me to participate in bringing a top notch pizza to Reno. Through experiments, obsessions, and external forces I have naturally been consumed by the kitchen and am here to stay. I am a Reno native whose past includes the corporate and not-so-corporate, the extreme and the boring, and the material and the spirit. Being a weirdo with my friends and community is my favorite past time. Let's be weirdos together.
When I was found as a young child in the woods of Macedonia, I knew only three words: river, bellybutton, and pizza. That's a much longer story, but suffice to say that pizza has remained a theme throughout my life ever since. It was my 'security blanket' as I acclimatized to the modern world. I've even been experimenting with making a large, blanket sized pie so I can literally wrap myself in it like a burrito. I love it so much.
I am a Reno native, I love this place. Pizza has been in my life for over a decade. My pizza history started with my father opening DiNapoli’s pizzeria in 2007. I dove head first into the glorious world of pizza. After that I spent years in the food industry working at Lamppost pizza, starting and working at The Seed (a raw vegan café) and ran a donation-based vegan pop-up restaurant. I love food and feeding people. I love providing people the highest quality ingredients and food that has been produced with the same dedication and love we are offering to our customers. Supporting our local agriculture is our duty as a community. Our business's intention is to not only bring Reno the best pizza this quaint town has ever seen, but to also support and give back to the community we value so much.
I was drawn in by the obvious... PIZZA! More than that, though, was the opportunity to serve our community surrounded by the love and dedication of others committed to doing the same. I grew up in the kitchen of my family's restaurant. Nothing says family to me more than sharing a kitchen together and spreading that love to those you serve. I have the pleasure of handling the online marketing and social media management for The Pizza Collective. You won’t find me in the kitchen but I will be sharing our story with you and inviting you to join us.
If you wake early enough in the morning, and you are lucky enough to hear the pitter patter of rain on your roof, you should get up as quickly and quietly as possible. If you step out your front door and it is raining too hard, go back to bed. If the sun is already up, you are too late. But, if it's just a gentle rain, not quite enough to break through the canopy of trees in more than a slow and steady drip that will last for a few hours after the rain has stopped, put on your thinnest moccasins. Hurry! Venture into the forest, do not make the tiniest sound, and you might discover a tiny blue grey flower like starlight and quartz and the tiniest glimmer of a baby's breath, growing close to the ground. Stop. Do not move. If you do, it will fade like dew in the morning sun of summer. Watch carefully, from a distance, and if all your luck has held true to this very moment, you just might see it open. Inside, you will catch a glimpse of Jacob.
Surprisingly, I enjoyed my first slice of pizza at the age of 21. In fact, I didn't even recognize it as pizza when I put it on my tray. I was in my third week at La Quentin Women's Prison in Folsom, CA. My 7-year sentence for mutilating my neighbors' cats (I like to knit) was just beginning. You could say things looked bleak. And I remember that first bite like it was yesterday—like a bottle of V8 rammed into Mr. Pillsbury.
I'll never forget that.
I've always wanted rabbits. I swore to myself every night in 1998 that I would one day own 47. I imagined it being true. Felt the realness of their silky soft fur brushing on my kneecaps, their tiny whiskers tickling my ears. Now, here I am 20 years later and you'll never believe it, but I got 52 of them. That's what you call MANIFESTATION. Oh wait, what? Pizza? Oh no, I hate pizza.
Growing up in a small town in Iowa, there were only two spices that existed in my culinary world: Salt and pepper. I suspected there were more. They say variety is the spice of life so I spent years trying out various lives. I was an opera singer, then international resort hostess, then drifter, then whitewater rafting and kayaking guide, then roller derby queen, then off-the-grid homesteader, and now pizza girl. When I moved to Reno more than a decade ago, I started learning about fresh, healthy foods, the importance of high quality local ingredients and a world full of spices. My favorite part of working at The Pizza Collective is the variety of delicious ingredients that change with each week’s menu. I’m grateful to work with a group of mindful friends at The Pizza Collective.