Walter Nassi died at his home on September 20th, 2022 at age 76, with his loved ones, wife Phyllis Pettit Nassi and son Enrico Nassi, by his side. Walter was born to Enrichetta and Coraggio Nassi in 1946 in the Tuscan village of Monte san Savino, Italy. At an early age he had a zest for cuisine which would be the catalyst for a culinary career extraordinaire that would last a lifetime.
His love for food took him to such prominent places as London, Porto Cervo, Gstaad, Nairobi, New York City and others where he served guests from groups such as the Cypriot High Commission, Embassy of the Sultanate of Oman, United Nations, Sony Music, and many others. After nearly 50 years of learning the food service industry in clubs and restaurants internationally, he found a new home in Salt Lake City where he moved in1996 with his family to open Il Sansovino in the American Stores building.
It was a few years later in ""his city"", Salt Lake City, that his international distinction as a renown restaurateur took hold. His signature restaurant, Valter's Osteria, opening on November 13, 2012, became a magical landmark for anyone interested in personalized Tuscan cuisine and the most hospitable welcome anywhere in the world. Valter's was a place where his grand passion for entertaining locals and travelers alike brought them back endlessly. He gave his gift of love equally to everyone, whether a celebrity or a regular. His passion for ""la vita"" was displayed vividly in his collection of diners' photographs at the restaurant's front entrance, and in the way he lived his life. Valter's Osteria received over a dozen professional awards such as Best Italian, America's Top Restaurants, and Lifetime Achievement Recognition from Salt Lake Magazine, Salt Lake Chamber, Zagat Review, and more.
Colleagues and friends from around the world will remember him as a giving, loving, and passionate soul who cherished every night in the company of diners who were entertained and thought of as family members by the master of hospitality. It was never just about money but about creating cuisine served with love and the wish to give something back. As he said in his book, ""working is not a sacrifice. It is a passion and love."" He displayed this passion in his art, ""the art of presentation,""at Valter's nightly with intricate meal composition on every plate.
He loved and cherished family and lived a life devoted to his church. He will be missed by wife, Phyllis of more than 42 years and son, Enrico. He is survived by niece Patrizia Nassi; of San Giuliano; nephew Emiliano Nassi of Fontegoro; the Valter's Osteria family; family and friends in Italia, New York, Connecticut, Kansas and Israel, and of course, Salt Lake City.
Walter was preceded in death by his mother, father and brother (Carlo). He was commended to God September 22nd, 2022 and his rite of Committal was September 23rd, 2022. Funeral Mass may be viewed by visiting his obituary page at www.starksfuneral.com. A public memorial service to celebrate his life will take place on November 10, 2022 at 6:00pm at the Cathedral of the Madeleine. Services have been entrusted to the care of Starks Funeral Parlor. The Nassi Family extends our profound thanks to the Carmelite nuns of Carmel of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Salt Lake City; the doctors, nurses and staff at Huntsman at Home; the Huntsman Cancer Hospital; Huntsman Cancer Institute; Drs. Christopher Dechet, Weldon Gilcrease, Benjamin Maughan, Shane Lloyd; Trisha, RN and Angi, RN; and the Greater Salt Lake community for your kindness and support in this difficult time; and as Walter always said ""Salt Lake, my city, TI VOGLIO BENE!!"" In lieu of flowers, a gift may be made in memory of Walter to benefit the ongoing work and mission of Huntsman Cancer Institute.