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Tresetti’s World Caffe: A downtown original

Situated on the corner of 11th and J streets in downtown Modesto, Tresetti's World Caffe has sat a staple of fine casual dining for over 20 years.

In 1994, Mitch and Tammy Maisetti, along with their business partner Paul Tremayne, had a venture to return fine dining to the area that would feature first-class world fare in a casual, fun and relaxing atmosphere to downtown Modesto.

“We combined the first part of Paul’s last name, ‘Tre,’ and the last part of ours, ‘setti,’” said owner Tammy Maisetti, about the establishment’s name. “We got ‘World Caffe’ from a popular NPR (National Public Radio) show on dining out.”

The restaurant provides a casual but intimate setting that can also portray fine dining with its white tablecloths and contemporary art on old brick walls. It also features an attached wine store with boutique wines as well as wines from around the world.

Their chef, Ramiro Gonzalez, served as chef de cuisine under Wolfgang Puck and has worked in the restaurant business for over 30 years.

In addition to rotating specials, Chef Gonzalez and his staff have created a variety of house favorites that have been on the menu during Tresetti’s 21-year stretch of culinary success.
“If we took them off the menu, it would create chaos around here,” Maisetti said.

One of those items is their chicken and andouille (Cajun sausage) gumbo that patrons can get at any time, even past restaurant closing when the bar is open. The gumbo is derived from a special recipe from New Orleans that a woman known as “Ernestine” taught Mitch Maisetti and was brought to Tresetti’s.

Maisetti said that at any time they feature various dishes on the menu from France, Italy, India, Greece or other places in the world.

“That’s why we’re the World Caffe,” Maisetti said, pointing out that in their ‘caffe’ they use two ‘f’s to differentiate it from a basic eatery.

“When we do make changes or additions we look for cuisine around the world or ‘old school’ dishes that would fit our application,” said Maisetti, pointing out their chicken cordon bleu of lightly breaded chicken stuffed with smoked ham and fontina cheese topped with champagne-mushroom crème sauce served over rice pilaf and accompanied by the chef’s choice of vegetables of the day.

Other house favorites include a seafood pasta with prawns, scallops and Maine lobster tossed in lemon fettuccini with a spicy lobster crème sauce and topped with lemon agrumato olive oil and tomato confit.

Another featured dish is their pan roasted maple leaf duck breast topped with a berry glaze and served with Israeli couscous with cranberries and sautéed vegetables.

Appetizer highlights are their trio of grilled bruschetta with pesto, humus and a traditional bruschetta of diced tomatoes and Kalamata olives or their Cajun style crab cakes. The Monterey Bay fried calamari is also popular among diners.

Maisetti said that plans are for a New Year’s Eve Dinner similar to last year which featured a four-course prix fixe menu featuring an appetizer, soup or salad, main course and dessert.

Located within walking distance of the State Theatre as well as the Gallo Center, Tresetti’s World Caffe is the ideal place for dinner or drinks before or after a show. The restaurant can handle group banquets in either its Union Room – a transformed union hall from back in its day – or its Wine Room – the wine store area with window seating.


GETTING THERE: Tresetti’s World Caffe
927 11th St., Modesto
CONTACTS: (209) 572-2990
Monday thru Saturday: 11 a.m. - 2 a.m.
Sunday: 3 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Lunch and Dinner with a Late Night Menu available
Full Service Bar