Michelle and Mike DiGiovanni have created a happy, welcoming place for residents of Running Springs and anyone traveling along the Rim of the World Highway. A picnic table in the middle of the café encourages patrons to rub elbows and get to know each other while enjoying coffee, pastries, or a variety of brunch menu items. The regulars know and start preparing their standard orders when they see them driving. It’s a daily meet and greet.
On June 12, LuluBelle’s Coffee House and Bakery hosted an Italian take-out party just for fun with Blue Jay’s Chef Sam Perry at Stone Creek Bistro. Tickets sold out quickly for the event. Two tents were pitched outside and about 64 people gathered to celebrate the camaraderie of two mountain companies that work together. The seven-course Italian meal was equally prepared by Chef Sam and Mike of Lulubel, Michelle and Aaron Velasco, and Ronnie McCaslin. A picture of Mike’s grandfather slinging pizza dough hangs on the wall of LuluBelle’s. He sure was smiling at the event. He owned two Italian restaurants in Washington, D.C., one on Capitol Hill, and Mike said DiGiovanni’s family lasagna recipe was served at the party. Waiters serve the guests, and the seating was family style, so people got to know each other. Everyone had a great time, and the event all the restaurant owners hoped it would be.