Nick Pellegrino

Chef & Owner, Mangia Nashville - Focacceria, Bar & Ristorante

Nick Pellegrino, is the creator of Mangia Nashville (pronounced MAHN-jah), the popular Italian pop-up restaurant that was named Trip Advisor’s “#1 Restaurant” while operating in Franklin, Tennessee. The immersive dining experience has helped make Mangia Nashville a destination restaurant for foodies from all over America and beyond. Nick now offers three Italian dining concepts at his new permanent home in Nashville’s Melrose neighborhood. In addition to the wildly successful reservation-only, price fixed, song-and-dance weekend events, he has introduced Nashville’s first focacceria with house-made, fresh casual Italian offerings, including signature and custom-made focaccia, black carbon bread, sausage, cheeses, small batch limoncello and gluten-free everything. A weekly Sunday Supper with bocce ball brings home his vision for a true Italian experience in Nashville.

Nick’s traditional Italian menus and the lively, communal atmosphere were inspired by his child-hood and catering business in New York City, travels throughout Italy, and music industry experience, on the road and in Nashville. “The desire and passion I have for bringing people together and entertaining them is at the core of everything I do.” Nick’s goal is to change the way people perceive the whole restaurant experience one meal at a time. “I want Mangia Nashville to be a joyful place where you leave your problems at the door, enjoy a great meal, meet new people, sing, dance, and celebrate life… It’s the ultimate social network.”

Mangia Nashville’s unique concept quickly garnered the Nashville Scene’s 2011 Writer’s Choice Award for “Best Weekly Food Event” and Nick was dubbed the “Godfather of Pop-Ups” in Tennessee. Nick is a regular guest on WSMV Nashville’s “Today in Nashville” as well as the “What’s 4 Dinner” segment during the morning news broadcast. He has been featured on Cooking Channel, Travel Channel, CMT, Nashville Public Television’s “Tennessee Crossroads,” WKRN and FOX Nashville, among others.

Nick currently lives in Franklin, Tennessee with his wife and son. He is working on his first cookbook and hopes to expand his Italian food concept to other cities throughout the Southeast.