If you’ve seen an episode of ABC’s The Chew, chances are you've experienced the effervescent personality and creative knack of Evette Ríos. As a roving correspondent for The Chew, and a regular contributor on Rachel Ray, Today, and HGTV, Ríos has made a name for herself as a lifestyle guru. Her specialties are cool crafts, DIY design projects, and dramatic before and after room redesigns. This week, the Puerto Rican-born TV star, who calls New York home, was in Miami to promote a Spanish language DIY initiative with Lowe's Home Improvement. We caught up with her to talk Miami favorites, holiday hosting ideas, and more.
You lived in Miami for some time, how does it feel to be back?
EVETTE RÍOS: I love Miami! I lived here for a few years and I miss it so much. I love to get a breakfast or lunch at Canyon Ranch in North Beach. It’s one of the few places in Miami where you can sit on the beach and have a delicious and healthy meal.
Your lifestyle TV credits run the gamut. What’s been your favorite post so far?
ER: I am in love with The Chew, the show that I am currently a correspondent on. I get to travel around the country and meet amazing people and eat some of the best food around. It is my dream job!
Who’s been the most fun to work with?
ER: Geesh, that is a tough one, but I have to say Rachael Ray. She has become such a great friend and no one works harder than she does. I know that when we are doing something together that she has my back. She is a dynamo and a real down to earth chic—I love that about her.
Who instilled your love for food and decorating?
ER: My parents. Even though we never had a lot of money, our home was always stylish and our tables always had the most delicious food. My parents walls don't have a single piece of art that is not original, and as a kid, we never ate any processed food. Even though I would have given my right arm for a Pop-Tart as a kid, it was always avena [homemade oatmeal] for breakfast.
What are some of your holiday traditions?
ER: Trimming the tree is one of my favorite things to do during the holidays. I love getting out all of the ornaments and reminiscing about how we acquired them, and made them, and how long we've had them. Making coquito is a close second.
Do you have any holiday entertaining tips for Miami hosts and hostesses?
ER: To keep things as stress free as possible, we have adopted a potluck attitude to holiday entertaining. Years ago my mom and aunts would try to out-hostess each other; guests would be sitting in the living room while the hostess was ripping her hair out in the kitchen. No mas! Now we rely on each other to carry the holiday hostessing weight. We each bring our best dishes. The result is an easier time for the host and more delicious food for everyone!