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Nearby points of interest

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  1. Distance: 0.12mi
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About Ristorante Massimo

Nestled like a hidden jewel in historic downtown Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Massimo's warmly lit brick and stone grotto walls, fresh flowers and oil paintings of magnificent Italian landscapes transports guests to Florence, Rome and Venice. Guests relax in a richly appointed atmosphere beneath mahogany-beamed ceilings and private parties unwind in their own intimate dining room. Ristorante Massimo offers authentic dishes from all regions of Italy. From innovative concepts to timeless Italian favorites, our executive chef creates each dish with a distinctive, refined touch as found in some of the worlds most celebrated restaurants. Thoroughly unforgettable, unbelievable satisfying. **limited dining room availability offered online**

59 Penhallow Street
Portsmouth, NH 03801
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Dining Style:
Fine Dining

Cuisines:
Italian

Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm
Cancellation Policy
Monday - Friday: for groups of 5 or more - We ask that a guest call by 12:00p.m. the day of the reservation to cancel or we reserve the right to charge a $20.00 per person fee.
Saturday: all reservations - We ask that a guest call by 12:00p.m. the day of the res reservation to cancel or we reserve the right to change a $20.00 per person fee.

Cross Street:
State Street

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(603) 436-4000

Website:
http://www.ristorantemassimo.com/

Entertainment:
Our staff!

Parking Details:
Ristorante Massimo offers complimentary weekend valet service. Our private lot is available for guest parking midweek. Simply alert the maitre d' of your arrival via telephone and we will gladly provide access to our gated lot.

Executive Chef:
Jethro Loichle

Private Party Facilities:
Ristorante Massimo is the perfect setting for celebrating a special occasion or hosting a corporate event. Here guests can enjoy customized menus, an intimate setting and impeccable service. Our elegant private dining room can accommodate up to 20 guests and special arrangements can be made for larger groups. State-of-the-art audiovisual equipment is available. We look forward to taking personal care of every detail of your entertaining needs.

Private Party Contact:
Massimo Morgia: (603) 436-4000

Additional:
Banquet, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wine

Ristorante Massimo Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.7

service

4.7

ambience

4.8

value

4.5

Noise

Quiet

98% would recommend it to a friend

Romantic (48)
Special Occasion (42)
Good for Anniversaries (40)
See All
Good for a Date (36)
Notable Wine List (31)
Creative Cuisine (28)
Authentic (26)
Cozy (24)
Fit for Foodies (24)
Good for Birthdays (23)
Quiet Conversation (22)
Worth the Drive (20)
Neighborhood Gem (17)
Business Meals (13)
Local Ingredients (12)
Pre/post Theatre (9)
Hot Spot (8)
Tasting Menu (7)
Handcrafted Cocktails (6)
Good for Groups (5)
Comfort Food (5)
Fun (4)
People Watching (4)
Bar Seating (3)
Casual (3)
Happy Hour (2)
Seasonal (2)
Good Vegetarian Options (2)
Afternoon Tea (1)
Great for Brunch (1)
Gluten Free Options (1)
Great Beer (1)
Great for Lunch (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
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1090 reviews
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vip
 (New England)·Dined 4 days ago

As always, the food, service and hospitality at Massimos was spectacular. If you have a special occasion to celebrate or just want a wonderful meal in a beautiful setting I would highly recommend Massimos.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Cozy, Notable Wine List, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined 6 days ago

Fantastic meal! Had a business dinner for 8 people, gave us a terrific round table-a must for a large group. Food was terrific, service exceptional!

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Authentic, Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined 6 days ago

Outstanding food, drink and service. Best restaurant in Portsmouth!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 6, 2017

We went for my partner's birthday, and loved it. It was all so perfect. Thank you for a great experience!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

 
·Dined on October 5, 2017

We have a fabulous dinner there last Thursday to celebrate our Anniversary. The food was awesome, so delicious. The service was excellent and if couse the restaurant is beautiful inside. Warm and cozy. We were seated in a lovely cozy corner table wth pillows. We have been here before and would definitely go back again! Thank you for a lovely evening.

Tags: Good for a Date, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Business Meals, Authentic, Quiet Conversation, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients, Creative Cuisine, Romantic, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 28, 2017

From the moment we walked in we felt welcome. The ambience was great which was an older building that had post and beam Construction with brick walls. The service was fabulous. Our waitress, Ala, was extremely Pleasant and made sure everything was great. This was my first time but will not be my last primarily because of the quality of food and service.

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food4
ambience4
service5

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 23, 2017

Massimo's is our favorite restaurant in Portsmouth. We went for a tasting menu on a whim 5 years ago, and now we go back for our Anniversary, my Wife's birthday, my birthday, and any other occasion we can make up for it.

The restaurant is a bit small and always full, with tasteful decor. The service is immaculate - many of the staff members we've had multiple times, and they remember us - including Massimo himself. The food is divine - the charcuterie plates are delicious and frequently have pairing we wouldn't have considered, and the pasta dishes are outstanding. We've been to Italy and if we were offered a dinner in Rome or one at Massimo's, we'd choose Massimo everytime! I especially enjoy the Carbonara, and the Meatball appetizer is a classic.

The wine list is comprehensive without being intimidating, with quite a few reasonably priced options. Sometimes they'll have something very interesting available by the glass (last time I tried a 1990 Borolo glass, which I would not have afforded a bottle of). They have an equally appealing after dinner drink list.

Can't recommend enough.

Tags: Comfort Food, Tasting Menu, Romantic, Authentic, Business Meals, Hot Spot, Notable Wine List, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Good for a Date, Local Ingredients, Good for Groups
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Portland)·Dined on September 19, 2017

Wonderful time at this restaurant. My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the food, the wine and the wonderful staff who made our visit so special. A definite return is on the cards!!

Tags: Afternoon Tea, Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Worth the Drive, Cozy, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Hawaii)·Dined on September 18, 2017

This is always a great dining experience! Wonderful ambience and service!

Tags: Special Occasion, Worth the Drive, Romantic, People Watching, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 15, 2017

Always wonderful! Best service ever and great food!

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for Anniversaries, Cozy, Local Ingredients, Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on September 13, 2017

Beautiful atmosphere, warm friendly greeting as soon as you walk through the door. Delicious menu, incredible appetizers and fantastic service. Love this place!

Tags: Casual, Romantic, Notable Wine List, Quiet Conversation, Authentic, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on September 12, 2017

What a great find.
Food was really good.
Service was excellent.
Overall a great place!

Tags: Special Occasion, Quiet Conversation, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on September 9, 2017

We spent the night in Portsmouth on our way to Maine and were looking for a good restaurant for dinner. Ristorante Massimo was among the top 10 listed on Trip Advisor and decided to give it a try. We were pleasantly surprised how attractive it was. Our server, Seth, was very knowledgeable about the wines and the items on the menu. My husband and I both order the octopus and it was tender and delicious. I ordered the duck breast which was done to perfection and my husband had the halibut which was also delicious. We will definitely go back.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Quiet Conversation, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on September 3, 2017

From black tie service to romance, this was a lovely experience and great choice for my husband's birthday. Our server was top of the line class.

The food was also most Delish :)

Tags: Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on August 26, 2017

Food & service are top notch. Great wine list! Pricey. Great room!

Tags: Worth the Drive, Pre/post Theatre, Comfort Food, Cozy, Romantic, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List, Local Ingredients, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 23, 2017

They were able to accommodate a last minute celebration. Staff was friendly and attentive & the appetizer special was amazing!

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Business Meals, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Groups, Hot Spot, Neighborhood Gem, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on August 21, 2017

The restaurant came highly recommended and did not disappoint. Very friendly and knowledgeable staff that took great pride in the restaurant. In depth knowledge of how dishes were prepared and conceived. Our party tried a variety of pastas, antipasti and meats. The veal chop and filet are not to be missed.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Notable Wine List, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Charleston)·Dined on August 21, 2017

Service is always outstanding, food is very good. Nice atmosphere, romantic, sometimes the restaurant is quiet and other times moderate noisy. One of the nicest upscale restauarants in Portsmouth

Tags: Authentic, Good for a Date, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 21, 2017

As requested we were seated at a quiet table celebrating my wife's 70th birthday. Our server, Candace was very attentive and proved to be very knowledgeable of the restaurant's extensive wine list. Our entrees were excellent . We greatly enjoyed our meal and are planning to return to Massimo's in November to celebrate our anniversary.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Worth the Drive, Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
·Dined on August 17, 2017

Wonderful Italian restaurant with a friendly owner who was gracious.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Authentic, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 17, 2017

As always, it was a perfect dining experience. I will always look forward to coming back to Ristorante Massimo.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Business Meals, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
·Dined on August 12, 2017

This place was so wonderful! The owner is very friendly and comes to your table to find out how everything is. The decor is just beautiful, and the food was divine! Our waiter was very friendly and professional. We wished he had known a little more about the wines we asked about, but he said he was relatively new. We had a great night!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 11, 2017

Excellent food , service and it was a 11 on a 10 scale

Tags: Casual, Tasting Menu, Worth the Drive, Authentic, Good for Groups, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 10, 2017

There are many many choices for great dining in Portsmouth but this restaurant was definitely among the best! Everything was prepared perfectly, the wait staff were attentive, helpful and professional. The owner was available during our stay and made a point of visiting our table. We had the meatballs and octopus for appetizers which were delicious and prepared a little differently as compared to other venues. Our meals included the veal chop, which was the very best I have ever tasted, the cod and halibut dinners which were also outstanding. We did not have room for dessert but saw other tables where it was served and it looked luscious!! This restaurant is definitely on our "return to soon list". Perfect for a special occasion.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, People Watching, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Romantic, Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries, Notable Wine List, Hot Spot
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Miami)·Dined on August 10, 2017

Lovely setting but our dinner was marred by an adjacent table of 6 which was LOUD (translate drunk) to the point that we couldn't hear our waiter recite the evening's specials. They entered well lubricated so not the fault of the restaurant.
Service was slow but the manager stepped up when informed by providing complimentary post dinner drinks. Carbonara appetizer excellent as were salads and entrees with exception of duck breast which was for lack of better description a bit 'rubbery'.
Would return in hopes of a quieter dining experience which appears the norm from observing other guests/tables.

Tags: Creative Cuisine
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food4
ambience4
service3
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 9, 2017

Everything was wonderful from the greeting by the hostess to the service from the staff and the taste and quality of the food. The dining room is quaint with the perfect ambiance for a romantic dinner.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on August 8, 2017

Excellent restaurant in the heart of Portsmouth. The ambience is lovely, the food always excellent, service wonderful. Homemade pasta that is made daily is outstanding. Dinner entree selections are plentiful and varied. The staff tries to accommodate any special requests you might have. The wine is plentiful. Probably best to book a reservation, they do seem to fill up quickly, even during week nights. We travel to Portsmouth once a month and always make this our go to dinner.

Tags: Comfort Food, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic
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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
·Dined on August 5, 2017

Amazing food great waiting staff. Great place best date night.

Tags: Fun, Business Meals, Notable Wine List, Romantic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 4, 2017

Have been a number of times and always outstanding. Food was great and service was even better.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (New England)·Dined on August 2, 2017

Excellent service, ambiance and food. Massino himself checked on us a couple of times to ensure everything was OK. Would highly recommend for any special occasions!

Tags: Local Ingredients, Romantic, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on July 28, 2017

My wife of 44 years and I were going to Portsmouth for the weekend and wanted to celebrate our anniversary at a nicer restaurant. I started looking online and reviews on Massimo's. The reviews were fantastic and the actual experince did not disappoint. The waite staff is very attentive and knowledgable. The ambience and decor is fantastic and the food was excellent. Excellent choice.

Tags: Authentic, Notable Wine List, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 22, 2017

Excellent spot in great NE town. Menu is quite varied and, despite restaurant's name, not quite as much Italian as you might expect. Service was very good. There is valet parking for free which would have been nice to know as we spent time parking. Overall, very good.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Romantic, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined on July 21, 2017

A fine, elegant dining experience. Food was excellent, grilled octopus appetizer and halibut entree. Excellent wine suggestion for pairing by our waitress.

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food5
ambience5
service5

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on July 20, 2017

Time capsule that desperately needs a make over if they want to see the next generation dine here.The great reviews must be coming from very loyal baby boomers, but if you are accustomed to today's updated version of an Italian restaurant, this will disappoint.

While we waited forever for our server to approach the table, the manager sat with regulars right next to us....blind to his team being in the weeds. Food is ho hum, "could be anywhere" and was cold.

Lighting was too bright, furniture and carpet thread bare and no music in a sterile environment. And oh, don't go on a hot night at the AC does not work, is loud and older than the menu.

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food2
ambience3
service3
value1

 
 (New England)·Dined on July 15, 2017

I'm not normally one to write reviews but our meal this past Saturday night was absolutely tremendous and could only be topped by the service provided. On every single level of staff interaction from the personable bar staff, to the warm and relatable hostess, to the knowledgeable waiter (who mixes what can only be described as a fabulous Woodford Reserve Manhattan) we felt welcomed and almost like an old friend. Massimo taking his time to personally stop by our charming corner booth to check in (and also chat about the white peacock stalking the waiting area) really pulled together the experience like a finely wrapped present. The attitude and charisma of everyone was glowing and truly infectious. Which makes sense since it sounds like a delicious staff dinner is served. You have earned two customers for as long as you'll tolerate us. Well deserved.

Tags: Bar Seating, Worth the Drive, Authentic, Notable Wine List, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 15, 2017

It was excellent

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 14, 2017

Superb Italian food, excellent service, lovely ambiance. Highly recommend. It was well worth the drive.

Tags: Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Seasonal, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive, Notable Wine List, Cozy, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Authentic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on July 13, 2017

Such a great evening. Top notch all the way around. Beautiful restaurant, great food, and outstanding service.

Tags: Romantic, Happy Hour
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Birmingham)·Dined on July 12, 2017

Clearly one of the best Italian restaurants in New England. Menu was classic and modern at the same time. Small plates are not to be missed. Service was outstanding. Servers were extremely knowledgeable about wine pairings and menu item preparation. A real restaurant gem.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Cozy, Neighborhood Gem, Quiet Conversation, Romantic, Authentic, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on July 10, 2017

Authentic Italian. Fresh seafood options. Great small plate choices. Excellent in house Burratta. Delicious.

Tags: Authentic, Notable Wine List, Pre/post Theatre, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

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