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About Marigold Manufacturing Corporation
Teresita “Mama Sita” Reyes was born in Manila on May 11, 1917. She was the eldest daughter of Doña Engracia “Aling Asiang” Reyes and Justice Alex. Reyes. Aling Asiang is the founder of Aristocrat Restaurant and regarded as the Grand Old Dame of Philippine restaurateurs. Mama Sita grew up in the social milieu of Divisoria-Navotas and larger culture along Manila Bay. Her parents lived in the trading post cum residence of her grandmother, Luisa “Luisang Kare” Garcia Cruz, at Divisoria. When Mama Sita was 7 years old, the family transferred to their own home beside St. Theresa’s College Manila where she studied.
Mama Sita exhibited great interest in history and literature leading to a deep understanding of history which made her a nationalist. This was apart from the nationalistic spirit instilled to her by her mother. In every sense, she was proud of being a Filipino.
Other than nationalism, fervent religiosity was ingrained to Mama Sita by her mother aside from her Catholic education. Despite being trained by the Theresian Belgian nuns to speak in English, she retained the folksy nature of Divisoria.
Being the eldest girl among a big brood of 12 expanded with orphaned cousins, Mama Sita took the chores of cooking helping her mother. It was a happy chore together with the marketing done with her mother. Other than everyday cooking for the brood, Justice Alex. Reyes’ associates and friends would get themselves invited to family lunches or dinner. Happily, Aling Asiang would entertain them. However, it was causing a drain to the family’s finances which led her to come out with Aristocrat Restaurant in 1936 upon prodding of said friends.
Mama Sita accompanied her husband at Bulacan. It was during this time that she became enamored with country life together with their tenants and other country folk. Oftentimes on some weekends, her mother Aling Asiang, loved to hold river cruise picnics along Pampanga River.
With Mama Sita’s children having grown-up, she regularly traveled to the far reaches of the world to learn and savor its various cuisines. She concluded that indeed Philippine food can stand out among the best. Thus arose Mama Sita’s vision of bringing the flavors of the Philippine I
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