Chef Massimo Terraciano checks out the all-new kitchen appliances and cookware just before the December opening of Massimo’s Bar and Grill in Purdy. Photo by Danna Webster

After five years in Gig Harbor, the owners of the Terracciano restaurant have moved to the larger beachside location of the former Beach House restaurant in Purdy. Massimo’s Bar and Grill opened Dec. 10.

When the couple was shopping for a restaurant location five years ago, the Beach House “was his (Massimo’s) most favorite building but it was occupied,” said co-owner, Cindy Terracciano. “Now we are right on the water. He is just ecstatic about this. Everybody knows this location. This building–I just love it. I love how it is so comfortable inside, so homey,” she said.

Cindy and Massimo Terracciano worked many long weeks to ready the restaurant for opening. According to Cindy, the kitchen was ready before all the permits and furnishings were in place in the dining areas.

“Pierce County was not that bad and the liquor, health department and fire marshal were a breeze. It was very smooth when it came to any of the county permits,” she said.

Training sessions for the wait and bar staff were conducted the week prior to opening. Chef Massimo is joined in the kitchen by his son, Salvatore Terracciano. and former executive chef at the Oyster Bay Inn in Bremerton, Chris Haberstock. “We do everything pretty much from scratch here,” Massimo said. “(We use) fresh ingredients, local foods and make our own sausage, meatballs and bread.”

Pizza is an option from the menu. Diners may also choose to begin with a spinach caldi salad made with fresh spinach topped with sautéed prawns, roasted garlic, croutons, lemon juice and fresh parmesan; followed with a Penne Massimo pasta with mushrooms and Italian sausage in rosemary; and, though there are many fish entrees to choose from, some hearty beef appetites might try the Bistecca al Pepe Verde, a charbroiled New York steak in a brandy and greenpeppercorn sauce.

At the conclusion, there are dessert choices to wrestle with, such as Tiramisu, a very special Italian dessert layered with rum, espresso, mascarpone and chocolate; Panacotta, a delicious cream custard topped with warm berries; or Cassata Sicilliana, a vanilla and chocolate ice cream delight with fruit filling.

Massimo attended culinary school at the Sorrento Culinary School of Naples, Italy.  Cindy and Massimo met while Cindy’s parents were stationed on military assignment in Naples and, after their marriage they lived in Italy for over a decade. Massimo worked at some of Naples finest restaurants, moved to Germany and worked in his brother’s restaurant, and arrived in the Seattle area about nine years ago to be close to the retirement home of Cindy’s parents, Ed and Kathy Reed of Olympia.

Both the Reeds and Massimo’s father, Salvatore Terracciano have been on hand to support and supervise the process of opening the new restaurant. The family theme spills over into the dining experience. A kids’ menu offers homemade macaroni and cheese; a casual twilight dinner may be seated near the fireplace in the cozy Venezia room; and all tables offer a spectacular view across the waters of the Case Inlet, beneath the arch of the Purdy Bridge with the possibility of a sunset or two to enhance your visit. Directions to the restaurant and a full menu with prices may be seen on line at www.massimobarandgrill.com or phone (253) 514-6237 for information.

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