Urban Family Restaurants
Italian born World Master Chef Salvatore Gisellu has been serving up his award-winning cuisine since 1987. Graduating with the highest distinction from Entre Sardo Formasione Professionale in Sardina, Italy Chef Salvatore has a long-standing reputation for his innovative Italian cuisine.
Chef Salvatore grew up in Italy in a house built for his family in the late 1800s. The youngest in a big family, Chef Salvatore and his siblings looked forward to eating Sardinian bread that his mother would wake up to bake twice a week. With the leftover dough from the bread she would make pizza in their wood fire oven. The families’ favorite pizzas were made with fresh basil and tomatoes from their garden and homemade cheese from the family’s cow, and always with anchovies. “In Italy, everything used in cooking was fresh that day from the garden, the butcher or the sea,” said Chef Salvatore.
Following culinary school, Chef Salvatore spent five years in Italy where he worked at Villaggio Palmasera Resort in Sardinia and served in the military preparing meals for servicemen and special event dinners for officers. In 1991 Chef Salvatore moved to the U.S. and helped open Arcodoro/Pomodoro Ristorante Italiani in Dallas and Hous-
ton as executive chef. During his time there, he received the “Best Pizza” award by the Dallas Morning News. Following Arcodoro/Pomodoro, Chef Salvatore has prepared gourmet cuisine in popular Dallas restaurants such as Ferrari’s and Coco Pazzo.
In 1998, Chef Salvatore joined Daddy Jack’s Wood Grill as Chef de Cuisine. In 2002, his American dream finally came true when he bought the restaurant. Daddy Jack’s Wood Grill is an award winning restaurant and Deep Ellum landmark serving the finest steak, seafood, and pasta. Daddy Jack’s was voted “Best Neighborhood Restaurant” by D Magazine and received four stars from Zagat.
His food has received numerous accolades such as the Texas Chefs Association’s “Best Dish of the Southwest,” Dallas Observer’s “Best Italian Restaurant.” He is a member of the Texas Chef’s Association and the American Culinary Federation. In 1998, he was accepted into the Epicurean World Master Chefs Society, which is an international organization of recognized elite chefs.
Chef Salvatore’s newest venture, Urban Crust opened in June 2009. Chef Salvatore and his wife Jeanne-Marie partnered with Nathan and Bonnie Shea to repurpose a harness and saddle shop from 1896 and turn it to a Plano dining destination. Urban Crust serves authentic wood-fired Italian pizzas updated for the modern and sophisticated palate. In addition to gourmet pizzas, Chef Salvatore will offer daily specials. The stylish three-story restaurant in downtown historic Plano contains a roof-top ice bar, “32 Degrees,” which provides a remarkable view of the city.
In his spare time, Chef Salvatore enjoys cooking for his family and visiting his vineyard, “Lunga Vista” in Fairfiew, Texas. He and his wife Jeanne-Marie have two children, Luca, 9 and Matteo, 7. According to Jeanne-Marie, it is not always easy to make their lunches for school – they have very refined culinary palates and will not eat anything frozen, leftover, or pre-made.