Femmes du Vieux : 1rst part - Da Emma

September 16, 2015

About Femmes du VieuxMany exceptional women flourish in Old Montreal, and it’s about time we celebrate them! They’re entrepreneurs, employees, artists or residents, and their wisdom is a never-ending motivation we should all benefit from. In this series that we entitled Women of the Old, we get to know these exceptional women who positively impact the days of many souls! #womenoftheold


At 74, This Woman of the Old owns and operates one of the neighborhoods most authentic Italian restaurants.

Emma Risa, propriétaire du restaurant Da Emma

Emma Risa | photo: Cynthia Polanco


Let’s start our series Femmes du Vieux with the celebrated Emma Risa! This chef, mother, wife and all-around amazing woman, is the force behind the mouth-watering Italian fare offered at Restaurant Da Emma. Originally hailing from Rome, Emma came to Quebec over 20 years ago, following one of her daughters decided to make the move here. At the time, Emma and her husband owned two noteworthy restaurants in Rome, so it just made sense to continue in the same line in Montreal. In fact, Emma made it her mission to share the flavours of Italy with Montrealers by serving up traditional Italian dishes. She opened her restaurant in 1998, and since then Emma has secured an exclusive, international clientele thanks to her elegant—yet unpretentious—authentic offerings. What’s her secret? Love, of course! Her love of people, Italian traditions and finding her favorite fresh ingredients. For this Woman of Old Montreal love and happiness are the key ingredients to everything, including life. “Without happiness, we are nothing,” she states. “The promise of happiness is what motivates us to do what we love and to be thankful for what we already have.” Like all women, Emma has faced difficult times, including the death of a loved one, but she doesn’t let anything get her down and always has a smile on her face. Despite her 74 years of age, she continues to serve her clients with the same enthusiasm as on the restaurant’s opening day, and she loves her work! Emma Risa is without a doubt one of the most charismatic, hard-working and devoted women I have ever had the honour of meeting!

Do you know a Femmes du Vieux? The next time you capture a moment with one of them, share it and use #femmesduvieux.

Let’s celebrate womanhood and all its facets!

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