Rita
(73)

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Positive Reviews 73
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About me
Member Since:January, 2015
Hosted Meals: 4
Attended Meals: 46
Languages: English, Italian
Occupation: Training & Development
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My favorite quick meal … pasta with an egg on top!
Hand made pappardelle in a spinach cream sauce … an upcoming mealshare one day!

LOCATION

Near South Side, Chicago

Interesting fact about me
While in Thailand, I voluntarily went in cages with unchained Tigers.
About Me
I love to cook! I love to dance … I enjoy international films (particularly Italian films)… I enjoy knitting and crocheting… I recently started running (yes, outdoor running even in the bitter Chicago winter weather) … I enjoy traveling … I would love to be able to speak EVERY language in the world … even the ones with the "clicks". :) ... I like learning how to create things (ANYthing) from scratch. … When I’m around other Italians (from Italy) I become more animated & exaggerated. (more Neapolitan!) … I don't have a favorite color … I've grown my own micro greens … And, I like to take cooking classes (in Chicago or overseas) ...
Why I Share Meals
I would like to meet friendly people who are looking to chat and enjoy good food together.
Places I’ve Traveled
I've traveled many places in Europe, including: Copenhagen, Germany (Munich, Stuttgart), Venice, Naples, Milano, Turin, Barcelona, Madrid, Athens, London, Istanbul, Austria, Paris, Amsterdam, Denmark... And, other places: Tokyo, Sydney, Cannes, Bangkok, Hoi Ann. And, in the US: NY city, Atlanta, San Diego, Sedona, Niagra Falls, Indiana, Ohio, Florida...
What I Read, Watch, and Listen To
Shows: Fraiser, Good Eats, The Cooking Odyssey, Throwdown with Bobby Flay, Secrets of a Restaurant Chef Movies: Dieci Inverni, Avatar, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Books: Brave New World, my Chai Tea book, All of my (from Italy) Italian cookbooks
A Memory of a Home-Cooked Meal
Really, any dinner my Mom has made (here in Chicago) … or dinner my Aunt has made (when I have visited family in Italy) … or my Grandmother made (when the family visited her in Italy many years ago).
Who I’d Like to Have a Meal With
My maternal grandmother.
I’m Interested In
  • Cooking
  • Dance
  • Entertaining
  • Running
  • Learning
  • Laughing
I Love to Eat
  • Any
  • Anything *authentic*
  • baba (small yeast cake in liquor)
I'd Like to Explore
  • Any
Meal profile title
Authentic Italian in the SoLo

73 Reviews 

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Kayee
It's always good to see/catch up with Rita (and the new hubby!), and share a meal. They're always great and thoughtful guests. Looking forward to seeing you both at other Mealshares.

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Hanne
Rita and Louis are fantastic guests. We had a great evening and it is always a pleasure meeting them both. I hope she will soon host again one of her fabulous meals.

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Awatif
As a Guest at Mediterranean Lamb
It was pure pleasure to host Rita at home. We had such great conversations making the evening fun and interactive. I look forward to seeing her again either at home or in other mealshares.

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Lisa
I'm happy I finally got to meet Rita! She is friendly, interesting and fun. Now I hope to try her food one day!

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Lena
It was so nice to learn how to make this pasta. It was much more work that I expected - and now I have so much respect for Rita! She is a great cook! Also I missed the Seafoot this time, I rember how great it was from the last time. Rita is a fantastic host, always full of funny stories about the food!

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Hanne
Finally I made it to Rita, it was for a loooonng time on my list. I heard so great thinks about her cooking that I just had to experience it myself. What can I say, I had a wonderful afternoon and evening, Rita is an amazing host. She had brie with fig jam and blueberry jam with lavender, I loved both of them. The whole afternoon we made Italien noodles and it was a ton of fun. Standing around the kitchen island, chatting with all the other guests and learning this great art of noodle making. She had already prepared a outstanding tomato sauce in advance and combined it with the fresh made pasta. A huge bowl, but it was so delicious that we emptied it out in no time. The fried egg plant and the fish she served where a delight by themselves. I got a bag of sweets Neapolitan Donuts - Zeppole for Teo, as he could not come to the meal. They must be very good because they where gone in under 5 minutes. I hope to attend a meal at Ritas very soon again

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Casey
I had such a great time at Rita's Neapolitan Dinner. Learning how to make all the dishes and cooking together with everyone was so much fun and that food was incredible! It was a wonderful way to spend the evening in the company of some delightful people.

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Jo
I had a wonderful time at Rita's cook together/dinner party. It was such fun to learn her methods for making orecchiette pasta. She is a great hostess and all of the food was delicious, especially my favorite eggplant. I'm not a very good card player but it was fun to learn a new game, Scopa ;). I hope Rita has another dinner soon!

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Cathy
I have a new found appreciation for all the work that goes into making pasta and how much work Rita puts into her meal shares. It was really fun learning how to make the orrechetti. Rita was a great teacher, she is very patient! The best part was eating it, it seemed to taste better knowing how much time and effort went into it. I don't think I have ever worked harder for a meal. It was a really fun evening.

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Jo
It was lovely to get to host Rita for dinner! I had been to her amazing Italian dinner before and enjoyed her company at other meals and so was looking forward to sharing some of my own cuisine. Rita is a kind and generous spirit and I enjoyed having her as a guest. I hope to have her back again in the future and to try more of her food, too!

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Cathy
I always look forward to going to Rita's for a meal share because I know it's going to be delicious and this time was no exception. This time I went home with a doggie bag bigger than my head! I also enjoy all the lively conversation. You never know what topic will come up. Her and Louis are great.

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Bob
Rita reminds me of an old,Italian grandmother. Except for the old and grandmother parts. She cooks enough for a friggin' army. Portion control goes out the window at her table. Because it's so good. And I'm still trying to practice the new learning to swim dance. "Bluhbluhbluhbluhbluh!...swish!swish!swish!...."

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Guillermo
So great that Rita came to my Mealshare! She brought a lot of conversation and good energies. I'm so sorry I wasn't home yet at the start time! Hahahaha Thanks a lot for coming :)

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Melanie
It was amazing! Noone fries calamari better than Rita! Her pasta is out of this world. Can't wait to be back!

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Roberto
Rita is so cool. She's funny and taught me some things about Chicago. I think I'm going to her city next month, if so, I will definitely try her Italian dishes. See you!

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Cathy
Going to Rita's is like popping over to Naples to see your friend for dinner. This time it was hand rolled fussili, fried shrimp,calamari and smelt. My favorite, the eggplant. Then to end the meal zeppolis and limoncello. We all played Scopa and had a great time. When you see Rita is cooking, sign up you won't regret it.

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Douglas
Hello Rita! I had a lovely time at your dinner; look forward to your next one! - Douglas

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Feihong
What can I say, Rita is a force of nature! I first met her at one of Michelle's meaty mealshares. It was clear that she cares a lot about food and is quite knowledgeable about Italian cooking. Later on I would discover her competitive spirit and learn to fear her ability to psychoanalyze her opponents in Cards Against Humanity! After hearing the rave reviews, I was finally able to get into Rita's mealshare, and it did not disappoint! Her handmade fusilli were amazing by themselves--with the sauce added they were divine! I was able to take home some of her homemade donuts (zeppole), and unwillingly ate them all the next day. Obviously, we all had a great time enjoying Neapolitan dishes in Rita's lovely apartment! Also, unrelated to her mealshare, Rita made the best kombucha I have ever had. Rita, I nominate you to be the chairwoman of the planning committee for Kombuchapolooza! (not a thing but it should be)

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Kandice
There really aren't the right words for Rita-great cook, great host, and overall sweetheart! She managed to be a great and engaging host while cooking up an incredible meal at the same time. I am so grateful she made room for me at this dinner. I didn't even tell her that I've never had eggplant..it was delicious! Again, she's a great host and a superb cook.

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Wendy
Rita is so friendly and funny and happy and is a joy to be around. She knows so much about Italy and Italian food and I always learn something about it when I'm with her. I look forward to seeing her again as a host or guest, and thanks Rita for turning me on to artichoke liqueur!

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Wendy
The food was outstanding and Rita was an awesome host! She told us about the Italian connection to her meal and introduced us to a couple very tasty after-dinner liqueurs, one made from artichokes! We even played an Italian game of cards after dinner. Rita is very friendly and upbeat and I look forward to doing another meal share at her home. Thanks for the wonderful dinner and birthday greetings Rita!!! :-)

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Jo
I had a wonderful time as a guest at Rita's Christmas in August Dinner. The food was amazing and I left completely stuffed and with goodies for the next day. I especially enjoyed the handmade pasta manicotti, one of my favorite Italian dishes, and the braised beef with onions. Rita is such a warm and kind soul and I enjoyed the background stories she shared on each dish, giving us a little piece of her family history before we tasted her creations. I look forward to meal sharing with Rita again in the future!

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Anthony
Never knew Christmas in August could be sooooooooo tasty and fun! Thanks Rita and Lewis! Incredible as usual!

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Melanie
Best Christmas ever! Rita is an amazing cook! As always, everything on the menu was out of this world! Thank you so much, Rita for opening your home. We had a blast!

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Cathy
OMG I'm still full! Rita is a fabulous hostess. From the Christmas music to the holiday napkins and the stockings hung with care it truly was Italian Christmas in August. We were like a crazy family eating together and laughing. The food...homemade manicotti (yum), but it didn't stop there. Delicious carrot balls(sounds weird, but delicious, potatoes, beef and zucchini. I thought my stomach was going to explode! If you are quick enough to sign up, I highly recommend a meal share with Rita.

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Bob
As a Guest at Bob's Making What???
As usual, Rita made the evening exponentially more fun. She's always cheerful, and has a great sense of humor. I'm really glad that she came!

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Samit
Rita filled the party with energy right from the moment she arrived and had a ready smile for everyone. Since word has gone around about her pasta making skills I look forward to be a guest in one of her meal share.

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Myrna
It was so nice to be able to attend Rita's mealshare! Her place was so comfy and artistic with beautiful paintings on the wall. The food that she cooked from the chicken breasts to the spinach to the sliced sweet peppers were delicious! Too bad I couldn't have the strawberries for dessert - they looked fantastic! There was such an abundance of food! Rita and her boyfriend did a wonderful job of cooking and making conversation with everyone. I had a wonderful time meeting one of her good friends there as well! Rita's demeanor is always vibrant, fun, outgoing and she's always in a good mood - I look forward to having her one day come to one of my Mealshares!

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Deena
Wonderful home cooked meal - the croquettes (spelling?) were amazing, the company was great - I met so many great people and heard of so many other fun mealsharing that I need to go to. Can't wait for Rita to host again :)

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Bob
Rita is just a plain....AWESOME MEALSHARE HOST! Her Italian cooking is so wonderful and authentic, and her place so welcoming. We had a great time. I want to thank her for going a bit extra for me and preparing a couple of absolutely delicious portobello mushrooms for me in place of the chicken, as I was doing vegetarian diet for the month. Just a great meal! Everyone was happy. (See proof in picture)

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Heather
I've had the pleasure of hosting Rita twice, which has been a real treat. She's energetic, easy to talk to, and always willing to lend a hand. I was super excited to finally try her cooking, and her Naples inspired dinner was just superb! To say I left stuffed would be an understatement. Rita's dinner was expertly prepared (deeeelicious), and she did an excellent job of hosting. A lovely night, shared with great guests, and a riveting couple of rounds of Scopa! Can't wait to do it again.

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Amy
Rita is so nice and funny! So welcoming and hospitable, as well as an incredible cook! She brings in a great crowd too --everyone who attended was a blast to converse with. A great way to spend a Friday night.

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Stacey
I had the pleasure to meet Rita during Chef Dante's mealshare (this is long over due!), she is a very warm and friendly person. I enjoyed hearing her stories about her travels and experiences- she is very funny, cheerful, and considerate, and so much fun to be with! I look forward to seeing you again!

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Melanie
Everything on Rita's menu was outstanding. This was the best pasta I ever ate and the fried calamari and shrimp were out of this world. Rita, thank you so much for having us and for your hospitality! It was truly an amazing event. Loved the card game as well. My hubby downloaded an app so he can beat Dominick at the next game!

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Cathy
Dinner at Rita's is like a night in Italy. She is not only a first rate cook because she makes everything from scratch but a great hostess. Always making sure everyone is having a good time. Which we all were. I finally learned how to play Scopa! I highly recommend a meal share at Rita's.

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Hanne
As a Guest at Twisted Traditionals
All the time a pleasure to meet Rita. What a great evening and meal we shared again together, so much stories and so much laughter.

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Jerry
Once again, Rita is such a pleasure to be around, this time at the komboucha making class. She was excited to learn how to make komboucha, and had specifically requested this class after I shared a bottle of my komboucha with her at her fabulous St. Joe's day dinner. And thank you for the blackberries to share as well as the photos! Can't wait to see her at another event. :)

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James
What a fabulous and gracious host. Rita not only served up one of the best meals we have had in a long time she also made the evening entertaining. She definitely gets a 5 star rating

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Angela
This was my third (?) meal with Rita, and it just gets better every time, which is saying a lot because I thought she was awesome from the get go! I think this is the intent behind Meal Sharing - getting to cross paths with wonderful people you'd otherwise not meet. Looking forward to sharing many more meals with her!

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Trine (& Bob)
Rita hosted our very first Meal Share experience last week - in a word, "abbondanza!" Plenty of scrumptious food, stories and laughter. She made us feel like we were all old friends getting together. Rita herself has a effervescent spirit that is contagious! We enjoyed her stories about the traditions of St. Joseph's day as much as the food. And the Italian card game we played over some strong digestifs was much fun. Great experience, thanks Rita!

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Jerry
Once again, it's a delight to share a meal with Rita! Now we've both experienced the different roles one can have in Mealsharing, as fellow guests, I went to her meal she hosted and now she's attended a meal I hosted! We all had so much fun talking late into the night about life.

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Coco
OMG my tummy is still full. Lol. What a wonderful host. Rita gets 5 stars for her hospitality & "The Food" I arrived a lil early and had the opportunity to watch her prepare some of the dishes. I love to cook and I know passion when I see it. She prepared that food with such passion I could taste it in each morsel that passed my palate. All I can say is outside of physically knowing I was in the South Loop of Chicago. My tastebuds, the ambiance, the food & fun (the card game), the drinks (Cynar)her extensive knowledge and all the guest put me right in a home in the heart of Naples. Rita, thank you so much for a fab experience. Oh, although my tummy is still in recovery from so much delicious food, she would like to thank you as well. Ciao Bella

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Myrna
Rita was a guest at the table at Jessica's "Spicy Taco" dinner and it was such a pleasure to see her again at a Mealshare! Fun, funny, cool and from what I hear - a great cook as well! I'll have to sign up to one of her Mealshares in the future within 24 hours the next time around. I hope to see her at upcoming Mealshare again soon!

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Agnes
As a Guest at Filipino Comfort Food
OMG! There are so many things to say about Rita...ALL VERY GOOD of course...She is so charismatic, hilarious, uplifting, ultra sweet, energetic...and very passionate about her Italian culture...I can't wait to try her fresh homemade pasta and zeppole! Plus, she happens to be related to my boyfriend...BONUS! I'm so glad I joined Meal Sharing or I would not have met her!

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Erik
It was great meeting Rita! She was a delight to have dinner with. She was outgoing and friendly and funny. I hope I get to have a meal with her again soon!

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Jay
As a Guest at Filipino Comfort Food
Rita is the best! She radiates such a positive, warm, and welcoming vibe that makes any mealshare a total blast to be at. Definitely mealshare with her if you get the chance!

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Chef Dante (George)
Rita is one of the nicest person we met during our first mealsharing experience! Super smart, funny, and positive person to be around during our mealsharing over the weekend. Full of life and we are lucky enough to hang with Rita during brunch. Definitely share a meal with her if you get the chance - fantastic lady!!! Rita, you rocked and I can't wait to see you again! Chef Dante/Dustin

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Myrna
It was so much fun to meet Rita at Chef Dante's meal share! She was outgoing, funny and had so many stories to tell about herself and the great people and fun times she's had through meal sharing. Looking forward to going to one of Rita's future meal shares!!

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Bob
As a Guest at Saigon Street Food
I've shared many a meal now with Rita, as a fellow guest, as a guest at her mealshare, and now she's been a guest at my table. And she's just a great addition to our community.

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Carlos
Cara Rita, thank you for a spectacular night! I had a ball, and I'm pretty sure everyone else lucky enough to go did as well. Rita's meal was delicious and artfully crafted; each orecchiette was handmade, and the sauce was made from her mother's own canned tomatoes. However, what really made this meal an absolute delight was how familial the atmosphere was. It felt like being at a big Italian family reunion, with no shortage of drinks or laughter. And, it was nice to practice my Italian too... quindi, per finire: grazie mille Rita. Come sempre, e stato un piacere!

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Huan
It was great to host Rita again! And I'm so excited for our collaboration soon!!

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Amy
Rita is so nice and so funny! It was wonderful to meet her at Jed's meal sharing. So funny that we lived in the same neighborhood too, so we shared a ride back. Definitely hoping to catch her at the next meal sharing event!

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Anthony
OMG, what a fantastic Mealshare Rita hosted. I won't go into all of the particulars as they have been thoughtfully cover be other guest. The subject of favorite Mealshares was a topic of discussion last evening and I can sure tell you this was indeed one of best times I have had at a Mealshare! The Hostess, her lovely soft loft with the fantastic balcony, the FOOD all made from scratch, the wine and liqueurs, the games and her Guest all absolutely exceptional! Oh, and I even learned to curse in Italian, priceless! What a Fantastic time had by all! Rita, tu sei il migliore mai Hostess e vedo l'ora di assistere il vostro prissimo Mealshare! Arrivederci e Grazie!

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Cathy
I had a great time at Rita's. She is a fabulous cook, host and card player. She tried to teach us all an Italian card game called Schulpa. We had Sardinia cards. Which was very impressive as I don't know anyone else that has been to that magical island. Everything was home made. The pasta and sauce were delicious. Only clean bowls were left at the end. The eggplant was some of the best I have ever had. She even had REAL limoncello. Not that crap from Jewel. The company was exceptional. I'm pretty sure if it had not been a school night we would have been drinking late into the evening. If you get a chance, sign up! I hope to see her again soon Thanks for the wonderful meal. Brava!

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Bob
I try to never have preconceived ideas about what a mealshare will be like when attending a newer member's first time hosting. Will it be casual? Will it be more formal? Will the dishes be somewhat familiar to me, or will I be breaking new ground in my dining experience? I've learned to just go and be pleasantly surprised each time. What I don't expect is to be completely blown away by the experience. I've met Rita a few times at other meals, and found her to be very good company. So I knew that it would be fun. Beyond the fun however, was the delicious homemade pasta, the perfectly done zucchini, eggplant, fried seafood, all accompanied by an absolutely divine sauce made from Rita's mother's canned tomatoes. Eleven of us sat around a beautifully set table, eating and drinking to our heart's content. And then some. It was so good and authentic that a couple of people on my end of the table started speaking in tongues. Outstanding mealshare, Rita! Oh, and I think you may have made too many donuts.

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Cathy
What an incredible meal! Everything was made from scratch and I believe lots of love because it was all delicious. The wine kept flowing and she had real limoncello, not the crappy kind that Jewel sells. Oh I had forgotten that it tastes like heaven. Rita is a great cook, hostess and Sculpa player. It was a great group of people eating and laughing. I really wish it had not been Thursday night. If she is brave enough to host another meal I would urge you to go. It was a real treat. I hope to meal share with her again soon.

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Angela
This was my second Mealshare, and I have to say that Rita really outdid herself with this meal - everything was absolutely delicious, and handmade! Rita also brings a warmth to her guests that immediately makes you feel welcomed and at home. Thanks Rita, for a wonderful Mealshare experience!

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Jerry
SO AMAZING!! Rita knocked it out of the park on her first meal. She's incredibly generous, keeping our plates, glasses and bellies full with her wonderful food, from the homemade pasta that she made by hand, eggplant, fried calamari and donuts. I'll need to wear my stretchy pants for a few days. :) And she showed us how to play "Scoopa" an Italian card game that kinda makes sense but has a bunch of crazy rules within it, which kept us laughing nearly 2 hours past the stated end time. Thank you, Rita!! :)

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Jessica
As a Guest at Irish Eats
Rita is a terrific conversationalist. We had a lot of fun laughing together! She's passionate about traveling, food and she's a fellow Hoosier--who could ask for more? Can't wait for our next meal!

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Chrissy
As a Guest at Irish Eats
Rita is such a wonderful and gracious guest. She came in, warm and friendly and definitely lit up the room and conversation with her presence. She's quickly becoming a superstar guest, and I'm so glad I got to meet (and become friends with) her!

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Kristin
I met Rita at one of Haun's mealshares. We rode the bus back to the loop area together. She was a very nice person. I loved hearing about her travel stories and her mealshare experience in Spain. I look forward to seeing her at more mealshares in the future, as well as hopefully going to one of her's as well

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Anthony
Great time sharing another meal with Rita. She is very smart, engaging and funny! Can't wait to attend her upcoming Mealshare!

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Emma
Rita is awesome, her laugh is super contagious and she is really open minded, relaxed person. I would hang out with her any time :)

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Huan
I first met Rita at Jay's mealshare. She is very nice and genuine. I told her about my meals at the time and I was happy to see her signing up for my Bibimbap meal. She is a great guest. Definitely a food lover and a great conversationalist. We had so many wonderful stories at the table to keep everybody entertained. I hope to see her again at future meals!

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Ben
As a Guest at Burmese Evening
Rita is just awesome! I wish I could have signed up for her upcoming dinner! She is so friendly, personable and gracious and I'm guessing she an outstanding cook as well. And she can speak italian, need I say more. :)

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Jerry
As a Guest at Japanese for Brunch
Rita was a lovely fellow guest at Krishna's Japanese brunch! I found her very fascinating with her world travels and her own adventures within the city of Chicago. I look forward to the Italian meal she'll be hosting in a few weeks!

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Angela
As a Guest at Japanese for Brunch
Rita has the personality of someone who immediately feels like a friend. She's funny, really well-traveled, and kind. I look forward to mealsharing with her again!

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Krishna
As a Guest at Japanese for Brunch
Rita is always welcome back at my table. Not only is she well-traveled, she also has a great sense of humor. I cannot wait to taste her amazing Italian cooking! I hope to see more of her in future mealshares.

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Carlos
As a Guest at Burmese Evening
Lei e molto carina, cortese, e divertente. Spero vederti a presto!

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Michelle
Though Rita and I recently met, she's already been to 2 of my meals and we've attended another together - which must mean she has great taste in food :). Rita's really generous and brought silverware for 20 to my gumbo Mealshare, which makes my tree-loving heart happy, and the experience all the better.

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Hanne
What a great guest Rita is, we had so much fun at or last mealshare. She is very open for all kind of stories and discussions and she is a great food lover. With guests like this you wish the evening would never end. I hope we will see us soon again.

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Anthony
Great time sharing a meal with Rita at Hanne and Teo's last evening. She is a excellent conversationalist and very funny! Hope to share another meal with her in the near future!

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Bob
I met Rita at Michelle's Barbacoa meal. I found her to be very polite and a great conversationalist. I hope to share a table with her again, and to possibly attend one of her meals...she says she cooks a mean Italian!


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