About Ristorante Massimo

59 Penhallow Street
Portsmouth, NH 03801
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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**

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/Private Rooms, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, Wine

Ristorante Massimo Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.7

ambience

4.8

value

4.3

noise

Moderate

97% would recommend it to a friend

Loved For

Notable Wine List
Boston / New England
Romantic
Boston / New England
Best Overall
New Hampshire
7 More
Best Food
New Hampshire
Best Service
New Hampshire
Best Ambiance
New Hampshire
Best Value
New Hampshire
Notable Wine List
New Hampshire
Romantic
New Hampshire
Special Occasion
New Hampshire
Best Restaurants in Portsmouth ›

special occasion (74)
romantic (71)
fit for foodies (57)
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notable wine list (48)
neighborhood gem (31)
good for groups (12)
vibrant bar scene (5)
late-night find (3)
great for lunch (2)
hot spot (2)
kid-friendly (1)
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All round lovely and relaxing dining on ...

 
 (London)
·Dined on July 18, 2016

All round lovely and relaxing dining on a recent holiday trip to Portsmouth. Very enjoyable!

Tags: romance, special occasions
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

OMG, we had a fabulous meal at Massimo ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on July 9, 2016

OMG, we had a fabulous meal at Massimo's. One of the top 5 Restaurants in Portsmouth.

I had the Caprese salad to start, it was fantastic. I had the Carbonara for my mid course. I get that everytime we visit the restaurant. I also had the short rib manicotti. extraordinary food at this wonderful restaurant. Massimo always greets his guests with a big smile and always remembers you when you return. The service is spot on. Always a nice wine referral by Candace. This is one of our favorite spots. Bravo Massimo.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Can't wait to go back again as this was ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on July 9, 2016

Can't wait to go back again as this was truly a remarkable dining experience from start to finish!

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food5
ambience5
service5

Fabulous meal!!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on July 5, 2016

Fabulous meal!!

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food5
ambience5
service5

Excellent meal and superb service. Highl ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on July 2, 2016

Excellent meal and superb service. Highly recommended.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

This is a lovely restaurant with excelle ...

vip
 (Atlanta)
·Dined on June 30, 2016

This is a lovely restaurant with excellent food and a quiet romantic atmosphere.

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food5
ambience5
service5

The atmosphere was very nice. However, ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 28, 2016

The atmosphere was very nice. However, that was about it. The food was just okay, a lot of odd things in their dishes which I think people would either like or dislike. Very expensive too.

Tags: notable wine list
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food2
ambience5
service3
value2

If you are looking for real top end food ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 27, 2016

If you are looking for real top end food and drink Massimo's is the place for you. The food is incredible, great wine list, romantic, cozy atmosphere and top notch service priced appropriately. Ristorante Massimo gets an A+++

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Tremendous atmosphere, outstanding menu, ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 25, 2016

Tremendous atmosphere, outstanding menu, great service. The perfect place for a special occasion.

Tags: romantic, special occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The food and service were both outstandi ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 18, 2016

The food and service were both outstanding. The special (supposedly a blue tuna caught locally the day before) was incredible , served with swiss chard , seasoned perfectly. Our waitress was friendly and wonderfully accommodating, when I asked for a blue cheese stuffed olive with my martini, she brought two. No crème brulee?

Tags: romantic, special occasion
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Burrata was a huge disappointment -- 2 b ...

vip
 (New England)
·Dined on June 16, 2016

Burrata was a huge disappointment -- 2 bites worth for $15! Wish there had been more vegetarian options, especially for the prix fixe options

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food3
ambience4
service5

The food was fantastic, and the service ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 16, 2016

The food was fantastic, and the service top notch. The maître d' was extremely friendly and engaging. Although the food really isn't for an everyday dinning experience, it did add to that something "Special" to that particular "Special Occasion". The service and presentation was extravagant and I would go here again for a memorable experience.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

Celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 15, 2016

Celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary here, and it was the perfect choice for a special occasion. Great food, great service, and a nice, quiet, romantic atmosphere. I had the Filetto di Manzo (beef tenderloin) and it was cooked to perfection. My wife enjoyed the Vitello all Griglia (veal chop) very much.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

We enjoy our trips to Ristoranti Massimo ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 12, 2016

We enjoy our trips to Ristoranti Massimo. Quality of the food and service is always exceptional and this visit was not exception. We got together with a couple of friends who were celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary. the waiter must have overheard us talking and brought out a wonderful dessert for them to share following dinner.

Also, my wife has many food allergies and Massimo made a point to call us before dinner to confirm and assure that she would be taken care of. Always a gracious host.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, vibrant bar scene
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

Always Excellent

vip
 (New England)
·Dined on June 4, 2016

We dine here every few months and have always found the food and service to be consistent and excellent.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Birthday Celebration

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 4, 2016

I made reservations on line to reserve dinner reservations to celebrate my husband's birthday. We arrived about 45 minutes and hostess gracious sat us a a table. Since it was our first dinner experience waiter explained the menu and offered suggestions. Our waiter was attentive and checked on us frequently (which was nice). But near the end of our meal my husband mentioned to waiter "Tonight was his Birthday." Waiter replied, "Oh I didn't know that." Additionally, we noticed a man walking around tables greeting and thanking customers for visiting restaurant. We believe this was the owner, although not sure, since he never stopped by our table. My husband expressed, the experience at this restaurant, didn't make him feel special on this special occasion, his birthday. We have mixed feelings about going back to celebrate another special occasion.

Tags: notable wine list
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food4
ambience4
service3
value3

Its all in the details

 
 (New England)
·Dined on June 3, 2016

Dining before a crowd on Saturday night was a real treat. Our very knowledgeable server was very helpful with suggestions, knew the menu and the cocktails as well as the wine list extremely well. Since we were the only ones dining for at least 45 minutes, he was not hovering over us, not rushing us and we felt we had him all to ourselves! The food was better than we had remembered , dining here a few years ago. We are not in the area as much as we would like to be! One diner had the Pork chops which he proclaimed was the best he had ever had in his 61 years! We found the secret was in the brine and how the breading is coaxed onto the chop, leaving it seamlessly sealed , preserving the moist, flavorful meat within. Our charcuterie platter was wonderful. We chose to have pasta as an appetizer. Its very nice to see it offered both ways on the menu without having to ask if its a possibility to chose it that way. That left room for our entrees of veal and pork. the veal chop was just as expertly prepared. hardly room for dessert, but 2 were tried and neither disappointed. I must make mention again of the expertly prepared cocktails. Its worth a trip to the bar upstairs just to enjoy one of those delicious cucumber martinis if we can't get a dinner reservation downstairs

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Great food. Attentive service.

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on June 2, 2016

The food was great. Wine list was impressive. Our server Melissa was knowledgeable, attentive, fun, and snazzily attired. They seem to care about every facet of the dining experience.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Phenomenal food. Staff (all of them) we ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on May 21, 2016

Phenomenal food. Staff (all of them) were excellent. Small place, so either get there really early to find space at the bar for a drink, or get there just on time. Their waiting area is literally big enough for 4 people. Hostess served us a drink in the waiting area, which was cool. Waitress was super attentive, and knew the menu inside and out. Everything was prepared perfectly.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Romantic birthday dinner

vip
 (New England)
·Dined on May 15, 2016

We celebrated a birthday and it was the perfect choice. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming--clearly lots of regulars who favor it for Saturday night out. The food is northern Italian with flair. Definitely have dessert.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

We celebrated our Anniversary & it didn' ...

 
 (Tampa)
·Dined on May 14, 2016

We celebrated our Anniversary & it didn't disappoint. Food was over the top delicious. The service was impeccable.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Never disappointed

 
 (New England)
·Dined on May 13, 2016

Massimo's is one of our favorite restaurants in Portsmouth. Everything about it is special from the time you walk through the door and are greeted by Massimo . He makes you feel like you are in his home. The wait staff is very friendly, knowledgeable and professional. The food is nothing less than perfection. We have been a number of times over the years and it never disappoints.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

The service seemed a bit rushed. Speaki ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on May 8, 2016

The service seemed a bit rushed. Speaking while walking away is bad form in any circumstance much less a service situation. The Chef "resisted" some of our food prep requests and seemed to prepare it a way that he wanted versus what was asked for.

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food3
ambience3
service2
value3

Had good time with my wife 10th anaversi ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on May 6, 2016

Had good time with my wife 10th anaversity love it

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food5
ambience5
service5

always magnificent at massimo's!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on May 5, 2016

from greetings upon entering, to the cozy ambience, friendly & professional wait staff, superb wine selection, exquisite food, attention to detail...massimo's is the place for any special occasion or to make any regular day special. consistently excellent throughout all the years we've been dining there.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Authentic and upscale

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on May 4, 2016

Authentic and upscale

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food4
ambience5
service5

Excellent dining experience

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 29, 2016

Ristorante Massimo is one of Portsmouth best restaurants. The entire experience, from stepping foot in the door to finishing up and leaving, is elegant and civilized. The service is fantastic. Every server and employee seems to be on the same mission, which is to provide the highest level of service for the guest. Massimo also goes around and chats with every table, which is a nice touch. Aside from the A+ service, the food is also exceptional. The wine list is legitimate and the cocktails are great, too. While Massimo's is a little pricy, you pay for what you get and the experience is worth every penny.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
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value4

Ristorante Massimo

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 15, 2016

Dining at Massimo's is a wonderful experience. From the moment you arrive you feel welcome and special. The food is excellent. The service is exceptional. The ambiance is conducive to fine dining. Relax, your food will take a while to come, and there is time to digest between courses. We had wonderful food and were very well cared for. We will come again for another special occasion

Tags: romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value3

Excellent food... excellent service

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 9, 2016

Excellent food... excellent service

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food5
ambience5
service5

Excellent!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 9, 2016

Foodwas great service was great I have no complaints, and that is rare for me!

Tags: romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

As always, an amazing experience!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 8, 2016

As always, an amazing experience!

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food5
ambience5
service5

Always a pleasure

vip
 (New England)
·Dined on April 7, 2016

We love going to Massimo's. The food is fantastic and the host (Owner) makes you feel right at home. Just like an Italian kitchen! Put it on your to-do list.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

Restaurant week gem!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 5, 2016

I went with my sister for restaurant week. I've tried to go before but always forgot to make a reservation so I love the fact that I can make them online! Food and service was amazing!

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food5
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service5
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Restaurant week delight

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 2, 2016

Have always wanted to go to this restaurant and we were not disappointed. The special menu for restaurant week was wonderful. Went with two other couples and we all had trouble deciding what to order for the first two courses, and we all had no trouble choosing the chocolate torte for dessert. I don't think anyone was disappointed! highly recommend this restaurant for special occasions or high end dining. A real treat!

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Always a great time!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on April 2, 2016

Massimo's is always a fantastic night out! We usually meet friends here for dinner and have a wonderful meal. The food is always a culinary treat. There is something on the menu for everyone in our party and we always leave here fully satisfied and vowing to come back soon!

Upstairs at the wine bar is a fun time as well. A lighter menu, but still incredible food! A fun place to meet up with friends downtown.

Massimo is always the gracious host as well.. there is always a smile on his face.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Simply Amazing!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on March 28, 2016

Our dining experience was simply amazing! Massimo was there to greet us upon entering his fine establishment , which was extremely welcoming! This was our first visit and we were floored by the outstanding waitstaff, service, and food! It was so hard to decide on a meal because everything on the menu sounded incredible!We will certainly be back for more, and would recommend this jewel of a restaurant to everyone!

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great food, read menu carefully, and ask questions

 
 (New England)
·Dined on March 27, 2016

Beef tenderloin and Salmon was excellent, lobster ravioli was not. Salad was excellent, asparagus was not. Bread was good (would have been better warm), cannoli was very good, wine was outstanding and Steve, our waiter, was excellent, and helpful/knowledgeable about all aspects of the meal.(I wish we had asked him about the lobster ravioli !)

Tags: neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

Steve and Massimo's attention for servic ...

 
 (Los Angeles)
·Dined on March 26, 2016

Steve and Massimo's attention for service highlighted a terrific experience. Their passion and dedication to a life's work for the best evening provided for the first of many memories there.

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food5
ambience5
service5

Excellent, would recommend and will return!

 
 (New England)
·Dined on March 17, 2016

Loved it! Massimo the man is incredibly friendly and welcoming, and his food is just as wonderful as he is. We came in on St. Patrick's Day for our anniversary dinner and everything was perfect. It's definitely a Portsmouth gem. As newer residents of New Hamphire, my boss, a native, quoted this restaurant in particular as "the best meal in town." And it most certainly is.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

One of the many things I enjoy about com ...

vip
 (New England)
·Dined on March 11, 2016

One of the many things I enjoy about coming to Massimo is that it's always wonderful experience… The service is impeccable and each dish is better than the previous one that comes out of the kitchen…

First Course… Local summer sausage made with Breezy Hill Farm pork, cornichons and mustard... An nice blend of Flavours that just dance on your palate in preparation for the meal…

Second Course… Asparagi con Prociutto… Roasted asparagus, lemon-saffron hollandaise, Prosciutto di Parma, crostini and brandade… What an amazing dish... The brandadade lightly breaded and then perfectly fried… The hollandaise counterbalances the other spices and are sure to delight… Just wow!

Entrée… Seared scallops, double ravioli filled with chickpea and ricotta, cauliflower and ricotta salata… A main course here is like going to the theatre… It's presentation… It's blending of flavours… It's and orchestra in cuisine…

Dolci… Marbled semolina kettle corn cake with rum buttercream and caramel… Just the right amount of everything… And not too much of anything…

And of course capped off with my signature Cappuccino… Perfect as usual…

Thank you Massimo for adding yet another favorite memory to an already memorable life… See you soon…

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food5
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