Manager Millie Boonkokua
If Millie could have dinner with anyone from her past or her present, she’d for sure choose her Grandfather. He left China for Thailand, where he and her grandmother met. Millie’s Grandpa was a jeweler and a dentist. She has heard many interesting stories about him from her grandma, dad, aunts, and uncles. Word has it; he was a tough man with a big soft spot. Millie would love the opportunity to sit with him and ask questions about his life choices and his hardships.
Millie was born in Los Angeles and grew up in Burbank. One of her proudest professional accomplishments was when she realized and took ownership of the fact that she genuinely enjoyed being in the hospitality and service industry. It was initially a struggle as It was not a career that her immigrant family entirely accepted from the start. Ironically though, it’s her Mom who she admires most in her field; “She is such a boss business lady! When I was still in grade school, she opened up a Thai sports bar called Coco Bango. She was a bartender and an owner.” Millie can’t imagine herself doing anything work-related outside the hospitality industry. She truly loves taking care of people.
Professional passions for Millie include self-development and self-improvement. There is so much in this world that Millie doesn’t know and still wants to know. She reminds herself constantly to keep an open mind to fresh ideas and perspectives. She is hungry for new information and eager never to stop learning. A vital motto Millie lives by, always assume positive intent.
Millie’s personal passions and hobbies are; food, food, and more food. She loves food. Especially spicy, salty, sour Thai food. She enjoys recreating her favorite dishes that her Mom makes, even though she knows they will never be as good. She is surprisingly good at eating spicy food. She jumps at the opportunity to challenge her taste buds as often as possible. A few of Millie’s favorite snack items include but are not limited to; her Mom’s nam prik kapi (shrimp paste dip) with cucumbers, stone fruits, and citrus, or anything cheesy. She loves a whole fried fish with spicy seafood sauce for an entire meal. And for her beverages of choice, sparkling water, chrysanthemum tea, and Almanac’s sour beers.
If Millie didn’t choose to make her home in San Francisco, she’d most definitely reside in Thailand. She would love to have the opportunity to learn more about her own culture firsthand. And everyone knows Thai street food is to die for. That said, her absolute favorite travel goal is Japan. She would love to try all the incredible food, visit onsens, zen gardens, temples, Mt. Fuji, and attend a sumo event.
Millie’s favorite things, hobbies, and non-work-related activities are: Taking care of her plants. She gets much joy in seeing them thrive and unfold new leaves. She loves working out, trying new food, reading, listening to podcasts, and yoga. Overall, her favorite way to pass the time is quality time while catching up with her loved ones.
Millie is an incredible person and a tremendous asset to her restaurant and hospitality family. Three traits that easily capture her; optimism, eagerness, and resilience. These essential parts of her personality are vital and shine brightly within the restaurant daily.
Some changes Millie would love to see in our world and our industry, more mental health options offered, specifically to the underserved communities. It’s imperative to her that we work towards introducing more resources and awareness for our AAPI community as a society.