David Grisanti’s Italian Restaurant is about to become more Italian.
Grisanti created an Italian-style patio at the rear of Sheffield Antiques Mall, where his Collierville restaurant is located.
The patio is slated to open May 30th, Grisanti says.
Explaining where he got the idea to transform the space into an Italian patio, Grisanti says, “I went to Italy and there’s a bunch of patios. My wife and I love being outside eating dinner, Italy-style.”
The patio is “real shady. It’s not hot. It doesn’t get direct sun. It’s got six ceiling fans. All kinds of plants. Some of these plants come from Italy. I’m getting two more lemon trees. In Italy, all you see are lemon trees.”
Grisanti also has herbs and flowers on the patio.
He also will feature classic recordings of Italian music by artists, including Dean Martin. He wants to offer live music in the future.
The area had been used for some of Sheffield’s outdoor furniture and garden accessories. “I thought, ‘You know what? I’m going to give it a try.’”
Grisanti plans to serve lunch and dinner on the patio. Because of the coronavirus, he’s setting up only five tables. For now, he’ll just utilize half of the 26-foot-by-51-foot space.
His restaurant, which still is doing carryout, now features a dining room, but operates, for now, at 50 percent capacity.
Describing some of the patio fare, executive sous chef/kitchen manager Ryan McCarty says, “Everything that’s in season right now. Grab everything at [the] farmers market. I’m trying not to be super heavy. Fish dishes and charcuterie platter.
“Everybody’s going outside now more because of the coronavirus. People are enjoying the outside more.”
The dishes will be “super fresh food and stick within the season,” McCarty says. “We try to do everything as local as possible with all this stuff going on. If I see somebody on the Collierville square selling tomatoes, that’s where I'm going to get them.”
Tuscan bread, lasagna, and Italian spinach are his most popular carry-out items, Grisanti says. But he prefers the dining room service: “I want to get my people. Talk to my customers.”
The restaurant, which is closed Sundays, is open for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. the rest of the week and for dinner from 5 to 9 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.
David Grisanti’s Italian Restaurant is at 684 West Poplar Avenue in Sheffield’s Antiques Mall in Collierville.