Dalesandro's Caesar dressing mix being sold at Petty's
BY JASON ASHLEY WRIGHT World Scene Writer
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
12/12/12 at 3:12 AM
They weren't open to customers yet, but Buzz Dalesandro was busy in the kitchen of his namesake restaurant at 18th Street and Boston Avenue.
His son, Sonny, has taken over the reins of the famed Italian eatery, known for things like swordfish on weekends, the Oliva Olio linguine and, of course, the Caesar salad.
In fact, the latter was why we came by the restaurant Tuesday morning.
"This is a loaded Dalesandro's Caesar," Buzz said as he came out of the kitchen and set a large white bowl of salad on a white-clothed table - a gorgeous heap of torn Romaine lettuce, Parmesan, red peppers and chicken.
Today, the dressing came on the side - and in a pint-plus-sized cup heralding Dalesandro's Finest Caesar Dressing Mix, which is now available at Petty's Fine Foods in Utica Square.
"My passion has always been cooking," said the senior Dalesandro, who filled in for Sonny this past weekend. Otherwise, it's all his son's business.
"At 60, I really am 'The Old Man' now," he said of what those in the kitchen call him when he's there. "But they keep their distance when they call me that."
Still, Buzz didn't want to retire completely, so he developed his popular Caesar dressing for market earlier this year. Then, about six weeks ago, he took it to Mike Griffeth, manager of Petty's.
Since that successful meeting, November sales doubled October's, and less than halfway into December, sales have tripled, Buzz said.
Don't look for the dressing in a typical shake-and-pour bottle, though. Buzz's Caesar is frozen, with a plastic container a little bigger than a pint, inside of which is the frozen base of the dressing. Just thaw it in the fridge for a day or in cold water, add a pint of olive oil, mix, then serve.
Like chili or a good sauce, the dressing is even better the next day, and the day after that, Buzz said. It's also a good base for other dishes, as he mentioned a Skiatook friend who brushed it on ribs.
He's in talks with another local, upscale food retailer about carrying the dressing mix, but he's hush-hush about that now - just like he is the recipe for the Caesar dressing.
For now, you can find it at Petty's for $6.99, as well as at the restaurant.
For more, check out tulsaworld.com/dalesandrosfinest
Original Print Headline: From table to store
Jason Ashley Wright 918-581-8483
Buzz Dalesandro sits with a loaded Caesar salad and tub of Caesar dressing mix at Dalesandro's in Tulsa. Sales of the dressing mix have tripled since its recent launch at Petty's Fine Foods. MATT BARNARD / Tulsa World
Dalesandro's Caesar dressing comes as a frozen base to which olive oil is added before serving. MATT BARNARD / Tulsa World