Frisco STYLE Magazine

February 2012

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BUSINESS Left, After investing a great deal of time and finances into research and development, Moni's Dressing was on store shelves in February of 2010. Below, Dritan and Artan spent time at their parent's restaurant, Benvenuti's, in 1989. Photo provided by Dritan Saliovski. our friends," Saliovski recounts. "They would sometimes drop us off at a theatre and take us back to the restaurant after the movie, just so we had some entertainment. It was very difficult." Determined to get out of the restaurant industry, at age 17, Mr. Saliovski started his own electronic importing and exporting business, primarily selling in Sweden and China. He met his wife, Sanida, in Sweden in 2001. His business was acquired and he worked for T-Mobile for a short time. In 2005, Mr. Saliovski and his wife found The American Dream BY MARIA LEAHEY AS FRISCO SHOPPERS pluck the best- selling vinaigrettes (Moni's House Tomato & Oil) off their grocer's shelf, very few salad lovers might speculate about the story behind this Frisco creation. After all, who would guess that the motivation for a successful salad dressing product launch was a stack of plywood and sacks of flour? When Frisco restaurateur and entrepreneur Dritan Saliovski recalls his childhood, he remembers very little "face time" with his parents, Eddie and Merita. They worked 11-hour days at their restaurant, Sicily's, in McKinney and Leonardo's in Frisco. "I woke up at 6am for school to find my dad sleeping; he FEBRUARY 2012 would start his workday four hours later. I got home at 3pm to study and was in bed by 9pm, while he was staying at the restaurant to close up at 10pm." If young Dritan and his brother Artan came to the restaurant in the evening to see their father Eddie, they would stay late and learn to sleep on all kinds of makeshift beds. "I remember sleeping on plywood planks and flour sacks in the backroom of the restaurant, or we slept in the backseat of our SUV as our mom took us home," he recalls. Any childhood fun had by Mr. Saliovski and his brother came from a surprising source: the customers. "They became themselves purchasing Luigi's, an Italian restaurant on Preston Road and Lebanon. He knew it was what he loved to do but was also torn about the hours a restaurant required. It was the same old thing he had grown up experiencing and he had promised himself he wouldn't repeat. "Sanida and I loved the relationship we had with our customers at Luigi's but really didn't have any family time," says Mr. Saliovski. "I have always told myself I would much rather be poor and have a happy family than wealthy without a family. Then I saw something in the salad dressing my parents served for more than 30 years. People asked for it by the cupful and sometimes hauled it home in milk jugs." Mr. Saliovski found it ironic that no one in his extended family, including his parents' eleven brothers and sisters, had thought to put this dressing on the grocer's shelf to make it available for everyone. He decided to give the enterprise a try. The tomato vinaigrette, the house dressing special, is made from a key No portion of this article may be reproduced without express written permission of Style Publishing Group, LLC. ©2012 • All rights reserved. FRISCOSTYLE.COM 15

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