Dalesandro’s in Tulsa is one of those places that has kept a cult-type following. When we visited, the place was packed and the doors kept opening to bring in more.
Centered around a horse-shoe type bar that was buzzing with yuppies and regular folk, it was clear that most of the diners causing the dim roar were familiar not only with the place, but the bartender and waitstaff alike.
I love places like these where in the words of Cheers, “everyone knows your name” and locals frequent often.
We sat at a white tableclothed pub-height table and pretty soon Sonny Dalesandro came out to say hi. S onny likes to refer to himself as “chef, owner and dishwasher” at Dalesandro’s.
Sonny is the humble, but very friendly owner who is the 2nd generation of Dalesandro’s. Oh yes, and he’s a former soccer pro also. I know this because his jerseys are proudly displayed on the wall at Dalesandro’s. Started by his father Buzz, Dalesandro’s was relocated and reopened by both Sonny and Buzz. Sonny uses the traditional recipes his grandmother created and he sticks to them. He’ll tell you that he knows those recipes inside and out and instead of a constantly changing trendy menu, Dalesandro’s sticks to lovingly prepared old family Italian recipes every day.
And Tulsa locals tend to agree as they keep coming back.
Recently featured by Southern Living in the Three Day Guide to Tulsa, Dalesandro’s offers up some of these dishes that we had.
To begin, we had the Ceasar Salad.
Dalesandro’s Caeser is touted by some as “the best Caesar in Tulsa” and perhaps it’s because of the dressing. Several restaurants boast of having fresh and snappy romaine, parmesan and romano cheeses and a bite of freshly ground black pepper, but Dalesandro’s dressing is what, in my opinion, makes their Caeser stand out. The dressing is a balsamic based dressing, unlike the usual egg-emulsified creamy Caesar dressing you might be used to. Draped lightly with freshly roasted red peppers, this was delicious.
Next we had to try the Swordfish Picatta.
Dalesandro’s hand cuts this baby into 8 ounce steaks, breads it with herbs and parmesan cheese, sautee’s it in butter and then pops it into an oven to finish baking. To finish it off, they nestle it on to of angel hair pasta and ladle picatta sauce (lemon caper sauce) with mushrooms over top.
Mr. Wonderful and I loved this. We really, really loved this.
While I wanted to try the much praised Carpaccio, or the Stuffed Shells, or even the Chocolate Gateaux, a chocolate custard dessert made in-house with Belgium Calibaut Chocolate, we were severely stuffed after our day of Tulsa tasting and just couldn’t manage.
We’ll have to go back again.
Life is tough, but we’ll do it!
Dalesandro’s Italian Cuisine
If you’re trying to find your way to Tulsa or Dalesandro’s, here is a map!