By M.M. Cloutier Special to the Daily News
Palm Beach Daily News
Posted Dec 21, 2019 at 2:42 PM
For Palm Beach restaurateur Gianni Minervini, Thursday night unfolded “beautifully” as his longtime white-tablecloth Italian restaurant celebrated another milestone.
After being closed since May, his 19-year-old Trevini has reopened in a prominent ground-floor space at 223 Sunset Ave., where renovations have been underway for months.
Minervini, dressed in a tailored suit and tie, welcomed more than 180 guests to Trevini ’s new Sunset Avenue home. The space is graced with a wall of French doors and a broad blue-and-white striped awning.
“What a beautiful evening,” Minervini said later, recalling a full house, both inside and along an outdoor terrace, as patrons enjoyed such dishes as truffle-sauced pasta and grilled branzino. “It’s a great new beginning.”
The restaurant’s new venue seats 110 within its 2,856 square feet inside and its awning-covered terrace —making it similar in size to Trevini’s former location.
But the new space, including a bar near the entrance, has “a more youthful point of view,” said Peter Niemitz, president of Boston-based Niemitz Design Group, which designed Trevini’s new space.
In addition to the aforementioned French doors opening to terrace dining, the restaurant features a dining room with blue and cream hues, high-gloss mahogany finishes, Carrara marble accents and travertine floors.
“We wanted to give it a more contemporary Milan or Rome feel with clean Italian lines, but all while reflecting the Palm Beach surroundings, Trevini’s sensibilities and Gianni’s classic menu,” said Niemitz, a former Palm Beach homeowner who has designed other area restaurants as part of his hospitality property-focused portfolio. “There isn’t a bad seat in the house.”
While Trevini, now open for lunch and dinner, has a decidedly new look, its menus remain familiar, with a mix of Italian specialties and an emphasis on fresh and imported seafood.
Longtime menu favorites include everything from seafood salad and beef carpaccio to salt-crusted whole branzino, porcini-mushroom ravioli and orecchiette with crab, asparagus and tomato.
Trevini’s location on Sunset is the restaurant’s third on the island since it debuted in 2000. Opening in The Esplanade, it built a devoted following that has grown.
In 2012, Trevini moved to the Bradley Park Hotel, 280 Sunset Ave., where it remained until May, when the hotel’s new owner, New England Development, began renovating the 95-year-old building to become the White Elephant Palm Beach hotel, due to open in 2020.
The 1980s-era office building Trevini now calls home sits just down the street from its last digs and is also owned by New England Development, which has been revitalizing the property since buying it last February.
“Everyone has been very supportive here,” Minervini said as he tended to final details before Thursday’s opening. “This area has a lot of energy. It’s exciting. I think it’s going to be a very good season.”
Minervini, a native of Bari, Italy, began his South Florida restaurant career in 1986, opening a fine Italian restaurant in Lantana and later, another in Fort Lauderdale.
He co-owns Trevini with chef Claudio Trevisan (the restaurant’s name is a combination of their surnames), who founded the popular Italian-cuisine Stresa restaurant on Okeechobee Boulevard in West Palm Beach.
Minervini and Trevisan also own Osteria, a May-through-October restaurant in Sapphire, N.C., where some of Trevini’s staff was working while renovations were underway at Trevini’s new Sunset Avenue location.
“Now another season begins,” said Minervini, whose daughters, Nina and Carla, have worked with him at the restaurant. While Trevini features a new dining room in a new location, he said, “what will never change is that Palm Beach is home for us.”