Hello, I'm Leta Merrill, founder of Pasta Maia.
My love affair with pasta began as a toddler around my Sicilian great-grandmother's dining table. No matter how much we ate, Grandma Mae would urge us to eat more.
A passion for pasta and cooking led me to a line cook position at Union Square Café in New York City. I spent the majority of my time on the pasta station and in the pasta prep room, and there I learned the value of starchy pasta water, how to source seasonal ingredients, and how fresh pasta is made. An obsession was born.
After leaving the fast-paced world of restaurant kitchens to raise my two children, I found a new avenue for my passion teaching pasta-making classes in Portland, OR.
I launched Pasta Maia in 2017 with the desire to foster community through pasta. In traditional Italian kitchens, the matriarch is the pastaia, providing hand-made pasta for her family daily. It is with this spirit that I bring Pasta Maia to you.