The beauty of Italian food lies in the simplicity of it; each dish requires rarely more than 4-6 ingredients. So what makes Italian cuisine so special? The history, the passion, and the LOVE put into making it!
Rafael knows Italian food like the back of his hand. His love and respect for the culture is what inspired him to bring this care and knowledge to the great people of Downtown Fresno.
In the age of experimentation, fusion, and interpretation, he aims to bring your senses back down to earth with simplistic appreciation. Step into Valentino's and you'll be engulfed by the aroma of freshly sauteed garlic. Feast your eyes on the bright green ribbons of basil atop your Caprese. Anticipate the Rigatoni bursting out its bright, peppery goodness with each bite.
Italian food is an art form steeped in centuries old traditions. Come take a step back in time with the most wholesome and satisfying lunch experience...and we'll see you tomorrow!
"Rafael Ramirez has over 30 years experience working in the restaurant industry. Since moving to Fresno in the early 90s, he has helped open some of the most iconic restaurants in town such as Campagnia, Parma and Slates. Now, it’s his time to shine and showcase his passion for good food and great service.
When he’s not cooking he likes to spend time with his family, take spontaneous trips Santa Monica and work on his golf game. La dolce vita, baby!"
"Anthony Valentino Fabbian was one of Rafa's best friends. When they met, they became instant friends. Rafa and Anthony knew it would be a lasting bond that would not break. But then again, it's hard to believe anyone Anthony touched did not become his good friend. Anthony just had this way of speaking with everyone and being able to carry on the conversation. It did not matter who you were or where you were from. Anthony would be able to extract your entire life story with ease.
This is precisely what happened with these two. Anthony and Rafa spent many a night with each other enjoying their talks. These talks would become the foundation of a lasting friendship that no one could break. Anthony encouraged Rafa always to step out and do what he wanted. He believed in Rafa and wanted to support his friend in chasing his dreams. During their friendship, Anthony developed cancer. Anthony began to do Chemotherapy, but this did not help and made him weak. This was hard for not only Rafa and Anthony but everyone that Anthony touched because Anthony now needed encouragement and love.
Unfortunately, Anthony passed due to cancer on April 16, 2022. This was one of the hardest things for people touched by Anthony to hear. This meant that this light that had touched them and continued to pour love into them was no longer there. This was truly devastating for all.
After hearing the news, Rafa knew there was only one way to honor such a man: to name his dream after Anthony Valentino Fabbian. Now with a name for Rafa's dream, he knew it was time to take that leap. He knew that Anthony would want nothing more than for him to succeed in his dreams. So Rafa took the leap and opened Valentino's doors to the downtown community in October 2022. Since then, Rafa has made many new friends and has served every plate and customer with the love Anthony showed him."
Written By Anthony's son,
In loving memory of Anthony Valentino Fabbian
2405 Capitol St #107, Fresno, CA, 93721