Location: Dallas, TX
Marital Status: Married
Education: Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Mississippi
Her father, Mike Kountouris, developed this unique dressing at the Mayflower, the legendary seafood café that he owned and operated for over 70 years. Callie was also inspired by Paul Newman’s method of contributing profits to charitable causes. “This is my dream, to give a portion of the earnings to the Center for Brain Health and to Save the Children.”
Do you have kids?
I have 3 stepchildren whom I love and helped raise. And my own daughter, Natalie,15. Can you believe I have a 15-year old? I had her when I was 44. When I got pregnant I was thrilled! Having children had been a lifelong dream of mine.
Did you go to college?
First I went to Millsaps College, a conservative Methodist college in Jackson, Mississippi where I grew up. You remember the movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding?” My parents were upset when I was dating someone who wasn’t Greek, so they had me transfer to the University of Mississippi where I earned my degree in education.
Did you work after college?
I taught elementary school for 10 years before becoming a Director of Major Accounts for a temporary help company. I was married in my 40s and when my daughter was about a year and a half old, I decided to become a domestic engineer (better known as Mom).
Tell me about your Dad’s salad dressing.
My daddy started a restaurant called the Mayflower Café with his uncle and cousins in 1935. It’s famous in Mississippi. Many politicians and celebrities have eaten there including Hal Holbrook, Dionne Warwick, Sally Field, Alec Baldwin, Whoopi Goldberg, John Grisham, just to name a few! My daddy’s dressing is like a remoulade with a swift kick of heat. People love it on everything! They call it a “comeback” dressing–that’s a Mississippi term–because people keep coming back for more.
What do you call it?
Papous’s Dressing, Dip, and Sauce. Papou means grandfather in Greek. My daughter would offer her friends carrots with her “Papous” dressing for a snack – and she decided that’s what we should call it, Papou’s! My daddy chuckled when she asked him for his approval.
Does your father still have the restaurant?
My daddy passed away four years ago. My brother now owns and operates the Mayflower. My daddy will always be remembered as an icon of Jackson, Mississippi and the restaurant lives on.
Who inspires you?
My father and my mother. Although a bit controlling (you know how Mediterranean moms can be) my mother instilled a great sense of self confidence in me. A portion of the profits of the dressing is going to the Center for Brain Health in tribute to her. She was in a car accident in 1970 and suffered a brain concussion and since then she’s struggled with the side effects of anti-seizure medication.
Tell me about your personal style.
When I was in sales I had to dress professionally, so I selected suits with a flair. I loved Audrey Hepburn’s style–she went from elegant to earthy in her later years. I loved the look of Joan Collins on Dynasty. I hate to say it because of her personality on the show. Having become a mom and the owner of my own business, I now find myself wearing blue jeans and t-shirts.
Why do you like Johnny Rodriguez Salon?
Johnny is very down to earth, yet he has great style and a great salon. He offers more than just styling. Their services include nutritional advice, therapeutic cleanses, make-up stylists, eyelash extensions, eyebrow shaping and wonderful proprietary hair styling products. They keep up with the latest in beauty services and everyone is very customer service oriented!
Do you have a favorite designer?
Tory Burch. I love her purses, shoes, dresses, and sweaters.
Do you exercise?
Absolutely! I am on a tennis team and regularly work out with weights and on a treadmill at a neighborhood gym.
Tell me a great book you’ve read.
Same Kind of Different As Me. It’s a true story about a couple here in Dallas. The woman dreams that she is supposed to help a homeless person. So they volunteer at a mission and while there she sees the man from her dreams. It is an incredible account of events with an inspirational ending. I don’t want to spoil it for you. A movie is in the works.
Do you have a signature perfume?
Michael Kors in the evening and Chloe by Lagerfeld in the day.
How do you wash your face and moisturize it?
In the morning I wash with Nuskin’s Clear Action Cleanser, tone with Biomedic Conditioning Solution, and Nuskin’s Tru Face Eye Refining Crème. In the evening I wash with Actifirm, an antioxidant cleanser, then apply iS Clinical Active Serum, and end with Relastin Skin Revitalizer cream. I use SkinCeuticals sunscreen when I play tennis. I have had several micro-dermabrasion treatments at Bella Vita Rejuvenation Center that make a difference in the way my skin feels.
What do you do to rejuvenate?
I take a bubble bath or I get a massage at the Crescent Spa.
What’s your biggest indulgence?
I would say starting this business because I’m paying for it!
What’s your favorite restaurant in Dallas?
I have several favorites because we have so many great restaurants here in Dallas. Stephen Pyles and Café Pacific are two at the top of my list. Wonderful ambience and consistently fabulous food.
Do you have a favorite wine?
Hess Chardonnay and La Crema 2007 Chardonnay.
What’s your favorite spot in Dallas?
Lakeside Drive. There’s a little park with a creek running through it and benches for people to sit and read or just enjoy the beautiful and peaceful surroundings.
What’s another passion?
I have to say- my husband laughs at me- but it’s dancing. I was a ballet and jazz dancer when I was young and now I would love to take ballroom dancing. My daughter and I love watching “So You Think You Can Dance?”My husband does not enjoy dancing, so I am going to need to find someone to dance with me! I look forward to it!