The word “family” is defined in many ways. Family can be those who grow up within the same household, co-workers who work closely together, or simply those who feel unconditional love and support toward each other. No matter the definition, it’s the care, compassion, and sincere appreciation for loved ones that exemplify what it means to be family. When a workplace has a group of individuals who carry each of these aspects, the synergy and connections they hold make for an environment built on inclusivity, encouragement, and a place they feel at home.
On June 1, 2021, the Capitol District welcomed the little hub of Lula B’s: downtown Omaha’s newest eatery that infuses eclectic Mexican cuisine with traditional American breakfast and brunch. Working in the food industry his entire life, Joe Becerra realized he needed to venture beyond simply cooking for people at home; rather, he longed to share his family recipes with the community. With a collective dream to own his own restaurant, the co-owner and head chef, alongside his family, now leads the restaurant’s kitchen and shares their recipes with Omaha locals and beyond.
The downtown building wasn’t designated as a breakfast and lunch spot, but Mike Moylan said he knew the Capitol District needed something exciting to complement the neighborhood. As co-owner and landlord of the space, Moylan said he strived for a concept with a family-feel culture in a welcoming atmosphere. After meeting with Becerra and his family, Moylan said he knew they would make a great addition to the space. “Instead of them going to find another partner, we thought we would be the partner with them and their family,” Moylan recalled.
The vision for Lula B’s was determined early on by the team. Creating the business’s personality together, the staff at Lula B’s bridged their values and backgrounds with the people they serve by establishing an environment grounded on inclusivity, support, and openness. General Manager Alyssa Roach said that the team never hesitated to jump on Becerra’s family dream. “We see them back there working hard and we follow them,” Roach said. “I see the smile on his face when he’s cooking. Joe will come out from the kitchen, stop, and look around in amazement that this is his restaurant.”
Like many businesses, opening during COVID-19 unfolded many difficulties and uncertainties, but the team stuck with the Lula B’s dream and created a culture that exemplifies its core values. Between an achieved family dream and an invigorating environment built on shared values and support, the family recipes served at the establishment carry a deeper sentiment on top of its authentic bursting flavors. “You’re going to taste the love, which is why we have classic dishes you would find in Mexico,” Roach said. While the recipes may be sworn to secrecy, there’s one thing that’s well-known at Lula B’s—culture is everything.