|Sergeant "Sal" Perinelli|
Hawkeye tries to tip Sgt. Perinelli (left) on the finer points of preparing French Toast in the Season 9 episode "The Life You Save".
|Rank:||Staff Sergeant (E-6). U.S. Army|
|Job/Role in Unit:||Mess Cook for the 4077th|
|Hair Color:||Black, Greying|
|Birthplace:||Brooklyn, NY, U.S.|
|First appeared in:||"The Life You Save" (Season 9)|
|Last appeared in:||“A Holy Mess” (Season 10)|
|Appeared on/or in:||M*A*S*H, 3 episodes in total|
|Played by:||Val Bisoglio|
Sergeant Salvatore "Sal" Pernelli was a character who appeared in three episodes of the CBS-TV series M*A*S*H, Season 9's "'Twas the Day After Christmas" and "The Life You Save" and Season 10's "A Holy Mess" . The part of Pernelli was played by veteran character actor Val Bisoglio.
For most of the series, it was unkonwn whether or not the 4077th even had a mess cook, despite the constant complaints from the soldiers about the food. Most of the complaints were directed at Private Igor Straminsky as he was serving the food, but Igor was never reveaIed as the actual cook. In Season 1 "Cowboy", Mike Robelo had a billing as cook but his name was not given. With Pernelli's appearance, the question as to who was responsible for the lousy food was finally answered.
In "Twas the Day After Christmas" , Pernelli had the pleasure of having Major Winchester working under him in the 4077th's Christmas Day observance of a British Army tradition called "Boxing Day", where officers trade places with enlisted personnel for a day. Winchester prepared an ambitious menu, but Pernell was not interested in complicated meals that required esoteric ingredients. He conveyed to Winchester, in no uncertain terms, the urgency of getting the food cooked fast--with the hoards of people that come into the Mess Tent, they don't have time for fancy meals! Pernelli also reveled in assigning the snobbish Winchester to wash and scrub all the dishes, pots, and pans between meals.
In The Life You Save (TV series episode), Hawkeye was assigned peripheral duty as mess officer and tried to convince Pernelli to serve French Toast, giving him detailed step-by-step instructions on how to make it. Pernelli then half-heartely applied Hawkeye's instructions by mixing a huge vat of powdered eggs and dumping numerous slices of bread in the vat, to "absorb the froth".
In "A Holy Mess" , a grateful Korean farmer awareded the 4077th fresh eggs after a US Army infantry unit helped to liberate his chicken farm near the camp. Pernelli was enlisted to prepare the eggs at a special brunch, but bristled as everybody wanted their individual eggs prepared to order. Pernelli unilaterally decided to scramble them all, but refused to serve them outside while the mess tent was occupied by Private Nick Gillis (played by Cyril O'Reilly, an AWOL soldier seeking sanctuary.