There are those that know their path in life from an early age. Others find out later, when struck by the lightbulb moment we call an epiphany. A few years ago, Natasha Napoli wasn’t sure where life would take her. Today, her path couldn’t be clearer.
“I think my earliest memories are from four or five, taking drinks to customers in my dad’s restaurant. He loved the fact that he was training me from such age. But a few customers thought it was child slavery!”
Along with a sense of humour, Tash has the food industry in her DNA. She is the latest in a long line of restaurant owners, having grown up in italian pizzerias.
Tash is the owner and founder of Nourish’d. The popular health cafe is at home on Cape Town’s trendy yet timeless Kloof Street. A vegan-friendly sanctuary, Nourish’d is a playground for those seeking a healthy lifestyle that’s kind to the planet. Expect freshly-pressed juices, superfood smoothies and signature rainbow bowls at the charming venue.
It makes sense that Tash has found success in the food industry. She has lived and breathed it all her life. But familiarity can breed contempt, and the spirited entrepreneur did not always dream of following her father’s footsteps.
For a long time, Tash battled with a lack of purpose. She feared that taking over Bacini’s from her dad would lead to a lack of fulfillment. A big part of her wanted to discover new things. So, she left the country in search of inspiration, working on yachts for nearly five years.
While at sea, she found adventure and gained perspective. “I don’t want to be a billionaire. That kind of money makes you crazy!” she explains lightheartedly. But behind the smiles and laughs lies a deep sense of wisdom and conviction.
On her travels, the vibrant businesswoman realised what she needed to do to find happiness. So she dedicated herself to living a more wholesome life; a chapter that began while studying to become a yoga instructor in Costa Rica.
This ushered in a new sense of self awareness. Tash became aware of how disconnected she was with nature and her body. Through yoga, meditation and a growing sense of spirituality, she began walking down a new path – one that has shaped her into the woman you see today.
Determined to bring the sense of joy and peace she discovered back home, Tash has gone the extra mile to make Nourish’d a family environment. Values instilled in her from young haven’t been forgotten. Kindness and loyalty have a strong presence in her establishment.
“I see my staff as family members. Human beings that have good and bad days. I take my dad’s advice. He’s had the same staff members from day one. It’s a beautiful thing because they were there when I was a baba and have stayed because they feel valued. They’re not just working a restaurant – they’re part of the Napoli family.”
Value works both ways at Nourish’d. The venue acts as a vehicle for Tash to share her experiences with others, whether they’re employees or customers. She’s helping people achieve the sense of harmony that has seen her thrive since deciding to eat cleaner and live greener.
Recycling is a huge part of the day-to-day operations at Nourish’d. Efforts to go green include a ban on plastic bottles and straws. They offer cash incentives to recycle, with R10 rewards offered to any customer that returns the takeaway glass jars. And Tash is more than happy to share advice on how to reduce your carbon footprint at home.
“I use a company called Recycle First. They’re great. It’s incredibly important to recycle because you’re diverting so much waste from landfills. And they’ll all be full in the next five years, which is crazy to think about.”
She also has timely advice for young women with big business dreams who don’t know where to begin.
“I could write a book about this. Maybe I should! Number one – don’t let your fears stop you from taking the first step. Just start! Manifestation is a real thing. Make a vision board because seeing is believing. Trust me, I still have mine on my wall.”
Tash is sharing spirituality and sustainability with every smoothie. She has found her calling and walking a crystal clear path. Head to Nourish’d for a dose of wholesomeness and a ton of feel-great flavour. And if it’s a hot day, you simply have to try the Amazonian ACAI smoothie bowl. The owner insists!
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