This is the final installment of a two part story on the DiSalvo Family businesses in Kettering. This Food Adventure leads us to Disalvo’s Deli on 1383 East Stroop Road. Since 1982, The Big Ragu has been frequenting this establishment because of the delicious, freshly prepared food. There is also a collection of Italian specialties that you wont find anywhere else in the Dayton area. The friendly staff are experts and have become our friends over the decades. Whether it is owners Ronnie and Mindy DiSalvo, or longtime employees Shelly and Jim, the service is exceptional.
Each day chef Ronnie prepares different “special entree items” from scratch. If you want a heads up on what the special of the day will be, sign up for email notification on the website disalvosdeli.com. We love the homemade soup of the day and specials like salmon and rigatoni in creamy tomato sauce when it is available. The Big Ragu’s favorites are the fresh mozarella panini with roasted red peppers or the fried eggplant on Fridays. We would also recommend a slice of the pizza of the day, made with fresh dough. There are so many Italian items in the deli case like chicken parmesan, artichoke salad, roasted red peppers in garlic and olive oil, mushroom salad, olives, stuffed baby peppers and more. This place is a great chance to explore your “inner foodie.” Want some freshly made pasta sauce? Pints and quarts of this amazing marinara are available in “to go” containers.
It seems however, that this deli has a cult following when it comes to their subs. We suggest you grab a sub menu on top of the display case, and look it over. The moment you peer through the dried imported pepperoni and loaves of bread to place your sub order, there is a realization that you are knee deep in a Food Adventure. The sub menu tells you to you choose 1 meat and 1 cheese from the list, then choose a type of fresh bakery bread. Extra freshly sliced meats and cheeses may be added to each sub for just 40 cents apiece. There are lots of toppings and condiments to choose from, like onions, lettuce, tomato, mustard, banana peppers, and hot peppers. Whatever toppings you choose, and this is important, make sure you tell them to add some Italian house dressing because it makes the sandwich. We wouldn’t steer you wrong on these killer subs ! The half subs are filling and a good deal at only 6 bucks.
In the mood for an Italian dessert? You can always find freshly filled cannoli (regular or chocolate dipped) and tiramisu. The deli also has various homemade specialty desserts like giant cakes, creme puffs, cookies and more based on what was prepared that day. Simply stated, they have some of the best desserts we have ever tasted. Also available on the menu are some vintage espressos and cappuccinos to complement any dessert.
DiSalvo’s Deli also has a nice Italian wine selection on the shelves next to jars of their signature salad dressing and jars of pasta sauce. There are fresh loaves of bread for sale, freshly made mozzarella cheese spheres, and grated parmesan cheese. It is fun to browse through the various pre-packaged pastas, jars of peppers, boxed Italian cookies and other Italian foodstuffs. In the display freezer there is frozen dough, freshly made frozen manicotti and ravoli that is ready for baking. Other favorite frozen pastas in this area include gnocchi and cavatelli. Here you will also find complete trays of frozen tiramisu for sale.
Other display cases feature Boars Head meats and cheeses, and some of Ronnie’s lasagna boxed lunches, salads and cooked pasta dishes ‘to go’. They have something for everyone here. Many local customers of Italian descent come to the deli to get hard to find items. The place is usually bustling and gets very busy during peak weekday lunch hours. If you have not visited this deli, you are missing another true jewel of the Gem City. This eatery is definitely one of our favorite spots to grab a bite. Whether it is a fresh dessert or a panini on a ciabatti roll, everyone can have a taste of Italy at DiSalvo’s Deli.
Take some time to scroll through the album below to see the variety of choices at Disalvo’s Deli.
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