ChefView – Rivets American Grill

Chef View By Dana Johnson

Photos by Michael J. Mangano

Rivets American Grill

March Munchie Madness!

Mmmm… Modesto’s March Munchie Madness is a slam dunk at Rivets American Grill! This place has only been open for 6 months and has already scored big with the well-rounded, want it all, Modesto View readers who support our local businesses! Rivets is the full court; a sizable lip-licking menu, an extensive full bar, multiple flat screens to yell at your favorite sports players, and a variety of live entertainment 6 nights a week to get your groove on! As an added bonus, it is family friendly too! Check out the kid’s menu that has the usual favorites while proudly offering ‘adult menu’ choices with kiddo portions and prices! Love that!

Rivets owner/president is Roman Wagner who shares his title with the ever-popular cocktail lounge, The Boardroom and the classic P. Wexford’s Irish Pub where you may hear a toast with a hearty ‘Sláinte!’ (pronounced ‘slawn-cha’), which means Health! and is the equivalent to ‘Cheers!’

Roman had the business prowess to bring welcome new energy to the east side of Modesto on Oakdale Rd. to open Rivets. With all of Roman’s restaurant successes I was pleasantly surprised by his humble demeanor and his dedication to his two children as his priority. He deferred my interests to showcase Rivets’ Executive Chef Matt Glenns and the enthusiastic staff that makes for this solid restaurant team.

Rivets Executive Chef, Matt Glenns is a married father of two girls, ages 6 and 10. So I imagine for Chef Matt being in a home with 3 females he enjoys his bit of free time as a bass pro fisherman and he even has his own swimbait company, see to purchase his hand-crafted lures. He loves seafood and the movie, Bull Durham. Chef Matt has also been an avid drummer for the past 20 years. He has an equally impressive 20 year history of working in kitchens such as Outback Steakhouse, Mallard’s, Celestino’s, and Paragary’s where he learned many culinary techniques from Chef Kurt Spataro for whom he has high regard. Chef Matt also has been a private chef at the University of Pacific for the Greek Council, in the dorms, sororities, and student kitchens.

Chef Matt created much of Rivets menu and the following categories; Soups & Shares (not that I would ever consider sharing MY grilled artichoke), Sandwiches & Salads including the intriguing CA Poppy Salad, the Big Grub like Chicken Carbonara, plus the Sweet America featuring Apple Bread Pudding made with Hawaiian bread and salted caramel, all divine! I had to try the Drunken Turkey once Chef Matt told me he brines the turkey for 48 hrs., slow roasts it for 3 hrs, sliced thin atop an amazing French roll, smothered with provolone cheese, caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, and bacon served with au jus! Yes, so Dana~licious! Next time I’ll have to try one or more of the daily specials!

Rivets buys from many local vendors: Yosemite Meats, Compass Foods Poultry, Produce Express, Challenge Dairy, Gallo, Varni Bros., CenCal Beverages, Delta Sierra Beers, Dust Brewing Company, and the seasonal Modesto Farmer’s Market.

Modesto View signature question to Chef Matt; Beatles or Stones? In record time, “Stones!! I grew up on it! My Mom has the biggest vinyl collection I’ve ever seen, she would have said Beatles.”

Rivets American Grill

2307 Oakdale Road Modesto, CA 95355


Hours: Sun.-Thurs. 11am to Midnight

Fri./Sat. 11am to 2am

Monday –Saturday Live music starts at 9pm

Recipe (Clip and Save)

Chicken Artichoke Carbonara

2 tsp. crushed fresh garlic 1/4 cup pancheta diced 1/4 cup bacon cooked and diced 1 tsp. fresh tyme 1 tbsp. butter 1/2 cup manufacturing cream 1/2 cup chicken stock 2 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese 8oz. penne pasta 8 quartered artichoke hearts 6oz. grilled chicken sliced salt & pepper

1. Butter artichokes & chicken into the pan 2. Add garlic, tyme, pancheta, bacon, sauté for 2 minutes. 3. Add chicken stock, cream, Parmesan cheese 4. Add penne pasta to pan until sauce thickens.



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