By: Lynne O’Meara, Southern Maryland Resturants

Iossif (Joe) Gressis

Lucianna’s Steakhouse recently opened in Waldorf and it is fabulous! The restaurant is owned and operated by Iossif (Joe) Gressis and his family. His mother, Asimina, shared her love of cooking and her work ethic with her son.

The family has three other highly successful restaurants in the area…Galazio Restaurant (wonderful Greek food in LaPlata) and OBO Pizza (in Waldorf and Indian Head). Joe, who started his restaurant career with an ice cream truck, is one of the hardest working people I know! He is up early and works all day, and often late into the night. He wants people to be happy with his food and hospitality!

With this latest venture, Joe told me, “I wanted to bring fine dining to Waldorf”. He has succeeded! Lucianna’s (named after his Brazilian wife) is based on a Brazilian steakhouse concept. However, as Joe says, “it’s so much more”!

Not only do they offer traditional Brazilian cuts of meat and preparation, but they also serve ribs, chicken wings, leg of lamb and “so much more”! Most of the meats are placed on long sword-like skewers and cooked over an open fire. They are then served tableside by gauchos (the guys with meat on skewers). The meats are all amazing!

Lucianna’s opened in mid-September with dinner service and recently added lunch and Sunday brunch. Each meal includes unlimited meat, salad bar, side dishes, and bread. If you are not a meat-eater, you can just get the salad bar, sides, and bread.

The different meals have slightly diverse offerings…

Dinner Service – Typically has at least twelve meats and often includes beef ribs, Picanha (Brazilian cut), filet, flank steak, ribeye, sausages, pork, lamb, shrimp, and chicken. The night I went, they had Roasted Leg of Lamb, carved tableside and served on platters to diners. They also had an amazing Smoked Sous-vide Ribeye which was served tableside on a smoke-filled covered platter.

The salad bar is so much more than just salad. There are fruits, salads, charcuterie, beans, and rice. The salads can include potato, chicken, shrimp, seafood, Brazilian, Caesar, Wedge, corn, beet, and many more.

  • Dinner (includes salad bar) – $42
  • Salad Bar only – $30
  • Kids (10-12) – $21
  • Kids (5-9) – $10
  • Kids (4 & under) – Free

Lunch Service – Usually has around six meats and includes beef, chicken, pork, and sausage. The salad bar has a few fewer offerings, but still so much food!

  • Lunch (includes salad bar) – $26
  • Salad Bar only – $18
  • Kids (10-12) – $13
  • Kids (5-9) – $6
  • Kids (4 & under) – Free

Sunday Brunch – The brunch is amazing! There is an abundance of wonderful food! In addition to the salad bar, they have an omelet station, Eggs Benedict, carved roast beef and ham, quiche, biscuits and sausage gravy, waffles, eggs, and bacon.

The salad bar on Sunday had three different ceviches (South American dish of lime-marinated raw fish or seafood), beautiful fresh fruit, and delicious desserts. The biscuits alone are worth the trip! The Honey Rosemary Biscuits are made in-house by Chef Mario. So, so good!!

  • Brunch – $35
  • Kids (10-12) – $18
  • Kids (5-9) – $8
  • Kids (4 & under) – Free

All meals have sides that are served family-style to the table. The night I went, they had a vegetable medley, Zucchini Balls, Sautéed Mushrooms, Lentil Soup (to be served over the rice) and bread. The bread!! They have the delightful Cheese Rolls (traditional to Brazilian restaurants) and Garlic Butter Stuffed Rolls. The sides often change, but not the bread!

Desserts and drinks are extra, except at Sunday Brunch where they have some desserts on the salad bar. All the desserts are spectacular! They have a talented pastry chef who makes beautiful desserts! Well worth a visit just for dessert!!

Lucianna’s has a large, comfortable bar. There are twelve beers on tap, and they have a new bar menu. The menu includes Brazilian favorites such as Coxinhas (chicken croquettes), Bolinhas De Queijo (cheese croquettes), and Pastel (Brazilian street food). Stop in for drinks and bar food sometimes.

Everything is fresh and made in-house. The ingredients and meats are all top-quality! The beauty this type of service is the menu is not set, so there is always something new to try!

The staff is great too; everyone is helpful and friendly. If there is anything you need, just ask! This restaurant is an experience and a treat!!

Lucianna’s Steakhouse hours are:


  • Lunch – Open at 11 am, last seating at 2 pm
  • Dinner – Open at 5 pm, last seating at 9 pm


  • Lunch – Open at 11 am
  • Dinner – Begins at 3 pm, last seating at 9 pm


  • Brunch – Open at 11 am
  • Dinner – Begins at 3 pm, last seating at 8 pm

The restaurant is beautiful…elegance has arrived in Waldorf. Joe did a lot of the work himself and it is amazing! All the furniture was handmade in Indonesia and designed specifically for the restaurant. They will be replacing the fall decorations with holiday decorations soon, so stop in, take a look, and enjoy the incredible food! They can accommodate small and large parties.

Lucianna’s Steakhouse is located at 3331 Plaza Way, Waldorf (near MOM’s Organic Market). Check out their Facebook page and website (

For reservations call 301-374-8241.

Rating (out of 5):

  • Food – 4.8
  • Service – 4.7
  • Ambiance – 4.8

Total – 4.8

Lynne O'Meara

Lynne retired after 30 years of federal service with the Office of Naval Intelligence in 2015. After retirement, she was a Commercial Real Estate Agent, which is where she learned about the business side...