Our Neja

Get to know the members of the Odprta kuhna team.

In addition to its founders, Alma and Lior Odprta kuhna team consists of a small group of clever, brave, hard-working and chatty ladies that make sure everything runs smoothly. One of them is Neja, an invaluable powerhouse that keeps the project going. Her official job description reads project manager. In reality, it means she is crossing and adding things to one of her many to-do lists as you are reading this. The list is full of details that help her see the big picture, keep everything in order and make sure the minds of other team members don’t wander off too often.

Neja, also Nejo, Nejči, Nejček, is determined and diligent. She might throw shade when things don’t go as agreed but has the kindest heart. She enjoys food (a work requirement in our office), especially chocolate and pasta. She sometimes (deliberately) fails to hide her nerdiness and her head is full of (not always) useful information, due to her incredible memory. But her drive and energy keeps us in awe time and time again. Of course, she was the first to answer all of our questions. 

What did you want to be when you grow up?

Both of my parents worked for a major newspaper which I found very romantic. Even in high school, I was still thinking of becoming a reporter or a columnist.

What do you enjoy most about the Odprta kuhna team?

Its liveliness, energy and constant desire to grow. When there's less to do, we instantly think of the new ideas and plans for the future. I love the team’s togetherness, how we always take care of each other and talk about everything. We are a team in the truest sense.

What’s the funniest thing that happened at Odprta kuhna?

Oh, there’s a lot of funny moments. A lot happened in the 8 long seasons especially when we were tired, but not every blooper can be made public. Sometimes our customers provide us with laughter as well. I especially remember an upstanding gentleman ordering one ‘dec’ (in Slovene it means a guy, man) - he wanted Bevog’s beer called Deetz. The whole team hardly kept it together.

What’s the biggest misconception people have about Odprta kuhna?

Probably thinking that we only work on Fridays. Most people don’t realize how much it takes to make sure that Odprta kuhna is running smoothly. We often get a question: “What do you do during the week, anyway?”

What’s the most stressful part of your job?

Unpredictability. I don’t have a problem with working hard as long as I have some control over the situation.

Which of your qualities does the team admire the most?

It’s probably the same quality that sometimes annoys them. My attention to detail. I like for everything to be communicated, settled and cleared. I am a bit of a control freak sometimes. But I think the team knows they can rely on me.

What do you miss most at the moment?

Hanging out. Crowds. Hugs and kisses. Proper handshakes. Concerts. Ease. Draft beer. I enjoy socializing and I don’t care for it being limited to the computer screens at the moment.

Which is your favourite place on Earth?

I love Ljubljana, my home town. It’s lovely, the quality of life is great here. I also enjoy the sincere liveliness and incredible food of Naples. Also, Serengeti in Tanzania, which is an explosion of life.

If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?

I would like for people to be less self-centred, so the solidarity and the community would become more important. It would solve many of our current problems - poverty, health, loneliness, environment …

What’s the weirdest food combination that you like but are somewhat ashamed to admit?

I enjoy dipping the fries in some ice cream at a popular fast-food restaurant.

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