Terranova’s Italian Restaurant: Fresh Fare in Huntsville, Alabama

A visit to Terranova’s Italian Restaurant in Huntsville, Alabama, is sure to provide a gastronomic delight and an aesthetic pleasure. From the decor to the menu, it is a fun place for a celebration, a girlfriend or business lunch or a romantic dinner.

Location: 1420 Paramount Drive, Suite #1, off of Highway 72 in Huntsville, Alabama.

Menu: A source of pride for owner Dan Oliver, is the fact that everything on the menu is made from scratch. The rosemary grown in his mom’s garden goes into the rounds of fresh bread that start off each meal. The herb mixture served with olive oil and bread is housemade and so good. Eggplants and tomatoes come from that same garden in the summertime. Fried green tomatoes, once an appetizer served on a trial basis, is now a permanent fixture on the menu. Eggplant parmesan at Terranova’s is excellent, but you might want to sample the fried green tomato parmesan as well.

Some of the most popular items include the corn crab soup as a starter followed by entrees such as chicken marsala, fettuccine alfredo, chicken scaloppine, spaghetti, lasagna and Lombardi – a seafood concoction of sauteed shrimp, blue crab claw meat and bay scallops. A relatively new favorite consists of two cod loins baked with parmesan. Gluten-free pasta and whole wheat pasta are available for diners who request them.

Dessert temptations include cannoli, Italian cream pie, strawberry tiramisu, creme brulee, and a chocolate creation large enough to be shared by the whole table called Mount Vesuvius.

Thoughts: Terranova’s opened in January of 2007 and has become one of Huntsville’s most popular restaurants. Dan Oliver experimented with recipes for two years before deciding which ones would make the cut to serve to his diners. After working for awhile in a popular Italian chain restaurant, he realized he wanted to incorporate the freshest possible ingredients and to make his own place very personal.

The decor is a particular reflection of the owner’s personality. Many small items were brought from Italy, but other interesting architectural pieces and antiques sought out by Oliver, create visual surprises everywhere you look. Numerous wood pieces plus the light fixtures in one of the dining rooms came from Alexandria, Egypt.

The atmosphere feels very similar to that found in family-owned trattorias in Italy. There is a sense of family at Terranova’s with attentive service and personal greetings from staff members during your meal.

Terranova’s offers six creative specialty drinks and has a large wine and beer list. Full banquet catering is available as well as a Family Style To-Go Menu. The family style items are portions for serving from 6-8 people all the way up to 20-25 people.  For a delivery fee of only $35, Terranova’s will even deliver in Madison or Huntsville. This should be a great feature for holiday parties and bowl-watching gatherings in the coming weeks.

Price Range: Appetizers are $8 or $9. Soups and salads range from $6 to $9. Lunch entrees start at $8 and go to $14 for grilled salmon. Dinner entrees go from $12 to $20. Specialty drinks are $7.50 each.

For a great atmosphere, visual stimulation and delicious Italian-style food, Terranova’s is an appealing choice.

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Connie Pearson

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