IT was in 1936 when Aristocrat founders, couple Engracia “Asiang” and Alex Reyes introduced sumptuous Filipino fare and have been consistent in their cuisine. All 12 stores, including three franchises, are located in the metropolis. Would future expansion include Cebu, perhaps?

The eldest of the Reyes offspring was Teresita “Mama Sita” Reyes, who is celebrating her centenary this year. A leading luminary of Philippine culture, she is recognized globally for her contribution and continuing influence on authentic Pinoy cuisine.

The Mama Sita Foundation, under its chairperson and president, Clara Reyes-Lapus, (Mama Sita’s eldest daughter), recently announced that to pay her tribute this year, Philpost has issued commemorative stamps. And to further honor this famous culinary icon, the foundation has printed Mama Sita cookbooks, which have been donated to various libraries here and abroad.

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Last November, the National Library of Korea was the recipient of the commemorative stamps and cookbooks with the assistance of the Philippine Embassy. The simple ceremony led by Philippine Ambassador to Korea Raul S. Hernandez and Mama Sita Foundation president Clara R. Lapus took place at the office of the National Library’s chief executive, Lim Won-sun.

Next stop for Mama Sita Foundation was the Russian State Library (RSL) in Moscow, Russia.

In the welcome committee were RSL president. Dr. Victor Fedorov; Centre of Oriental Literature of the RS head Marina Vladimirovna Melan; Philippine Ambassador to the Russian Federation Carlos D. Sorreta; Linda Gaa, wife of the late Phil. Ambassador to the USA, Willy Gaa; the Philippine Embassy staff, and representatives of the Mama Sita Foundation.

Cooperation and Development (CESIR) chief executive officer Olga Biryukova, 7D Mango Distributor in Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States Alex Makhalov and Mynewfood Company chief executive officer Elena Kolbasova then partook of the food tasting.