William Massimo Rinetti founded Massimo’s Italian Restaurant in 1976. Massimo’s opening was the realization of Bill’s lifelong dream of owning and operating a fine dining establishment. A second generation Californian whose grandparents emigrated from Sicily and the Piemonte region of Italy, Bill acquired his appreciation of cooking in the Italian style in the kitchens of his mother and grandmothers. It was there that his dedication to the finest ingredients, careful preparation, and attention to detail were learned. “Never compromise quality” became the hallmark of his restaurant. At Massimo’s, every dish reflected Bill’s dedication to offering his patrons the finest dining experience possible. Delicious food, elegant ambiance, and professional service became a tradition that is carried on today by his son, Bill Jr.
Massimo’s remains a family business. Today it is owned and managed by Bill Jr. Over the years, many members of Bill’s family have worked to make Massimo’s a destination for fine dining. Bill’s father, “Bill Senior”, for many years tended bar on Saturdays to a loyal and admiring group of patrons.
The restaurant is named after Bill Senior’s father, Massimo Rinetti. Massimo migrated to the United States from Italy in the early 1900's. His first Job in the United States was a busboy at the famous Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. After the Great San Francisco Earth Quake of 1906, he moved to Oakland and worked for Union Pacific Railway. His hard work and dedication filtered down to his family and that continues today at Massimo's.
Since Bill’s death in 2002 Massimo’s has been in the capable hands of his son, Bill, Jr. who worked side by side with his father since his teen years. In charge of the daily operation of the restaurant since the 1990s, Bill Jr. continues to emphasize his father’s dedication to providing a fine dining experience while constantly seeking to update and refresh the operation so that Massimo’s will continue to excel.