4/5/13

Moni's Natural Dressing and Pasta Sauce Giveaway!!


On Wednesday April 3, I had the pleasure of meeting Dritan Saliovski. To the locals in Frisco and McKinney, the name is synonymous with Moni’s Naturals as well as Sicily’s and Luigi’s Pizza and Pasta restaurants. As I pulled into the parking lot of Sicily’s restaurant I had to hunt for a parking spot because nearly every space was filled by the hungry lunch crowd.

For those who don’t know, Dritan’s family has owned and operated over 150 restaurants in Texas. Over the years, restaurant patrons have pleaded for Dritan’s family dressing and pasta sauces.  One day, it hit Dritan that he should bottle and sell the products so people could enjoy them anytime they wanted.

When I entered the restaurant my nose was immediately greeted by the most enticing Italian smells. Dritan was sitting by the front door and welcomed me in his bright turquoise shirt and firm handshake. We grabbed a table and Dritan let me bombard him with questions.  Below is a sneak peek at our conversation:

Alicia: Dritan, tell me what makes your products different from all the others next to it on our shelves at Market Street.
Dritan: We feel that our product is the most unique because we use all fresh ingredients. We pride ourselves on using fresh tomatoes while many other sauces use tomato concentrate [in the pasta sauces].

Alicia: Tell me more about where you get your ingredients.
Dritan: Our pasta sauces contain carrots, onions, garlic and basil that all come from the Dallas Farmer’s Market. We use a certain type of tomato that we can only get from California and we’re very selective about our olive oil. While others use plain olive oil, we insist on extra virgin olive oil from the Mediterranean.

Alicia: At Market Street, we want to be a health and wellness destination for our guests. How do your products fit into that goal?
Dritan: Because our pasta sauces have fresh carrots and less sugar there is less acid. Our pasta eaters mention that the sauces don’t give them as much reflux. Our Original Salad Dressing contains only 45 calories per serving; and, our Lite Salad Dressing has “0 Weight Watchers points”, gets one of the highest
NuVal scores for salad dressings and contains no high fructose corn syrup. Update: Moni’s Lite Dressing is up for Dietitian’s Top Pick in Salad Dressings at Market Street. Look for new Dietitian’s Top Pick signs coming this summer.

Alicia: I see that your products are gluten free. Was that a conscious decision?
Dritan:  When we first created the salad dressings we saw that it was gluten free. We also discovered that my wife needed to eat a gluten free diet. So from then on we ensured that all the products were gluten free. We even manufacture them in a gluten free facility.

Alicia: Do you have plans to develop any more products?
Dritan: As a matter of fact, we are testing out some vodka and alfredo sauces at the restaurant today. It takes us about 6 months to perfect a recipe and about a year from idea to shelf.

Alicia: I imagine that the bar is set pretty high with all your family members and loyal restaurant patrons as taste testers.
Dritan: It has to be just right. We are already at the 19th version of the recipe and I’m sure we’ll still have more changes. The tricky part is that a recipe could be a homerun in the restaurant but may not work out once bottled and on the shelf. We have to find a consistent taste that people can get in our restaurants and on the shelves.
Read more about the Moni’s success from the article in Frisco Style Magazine (Feb 2012).
Be sure to follow Moni's Natural on Twitter @MonisNatural and like them on Facebook.

GIVEAWAY!!

Dritan and his family have been kind enough to offer 3 of our Market Street shoppers a chance to each win a $10 gift card to Sicily’s (in McKinney) or Luigi’s (in Frisco) restaurant as well as 2 of their 6 products (Spicy Marinara, Garlic and Basil Marinara, Original Marinara, Famous House Vinaigrette, Famous Light Tomato Vinaigrette, Italian Country Balsamic Dressing).

To enter to win, leave a comment below listing one thing you learned about Moni’s that you didn’t know before reading today’s blog.

This prize giveaway is only for Market Street shoppers in the Dallas Fort Worth area. Winners must be able to pick up their prize at their nearest Market Street Supermarket (McKinney, Frisco, Allen, Plano, Coppell or Colleyville). Prizes cannot be mailed. Winners will be selected on the morning of April 12th and will be announced on the blog. Three winners will be drawn at random from those who leave comments before 9 am (Central Time) on April 12th. The winners will then get to choose if they want their gift card to Luigi's or Sicily's, which of the 2 products they would like and which store they would like it delivered to.

Update 4/12/13: Congrats to Kimber and CRoth for winning this weeks blog giveaway.
 

5 comments :

  1. I can't wait to try Moni's products! I'm a true tomato sauce lover and love the fact that they use fresh ingredients from Dallas Farmer's Market as well as premium tomatoes and olive oil. Sounds yummy!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Kimber! Will you email me (ajerome@unitedtexas.com) and let me know which 2 products you would like and if you'd like your gift card to Luigi's or Sicily's. Congrats!

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  2. I think it's awesome that your salad dressing have so few calories and still taste amazing

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    Replies
    1. Hi CRoth! Will you email me (ajerome@unitedtexas.com) and let me know which 2 products you would like and if you'd like your gift card to Luigi's or Sicily's. Congrats!

      Delete
  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete