Food and Drink - Spring 2011 - (Page 184)

>r RETAIL sendik’s fine foods inc. The Finer Things Many Milwaukee-area residents are loyal to Sendik’s Fine Foods. By Staci Davidson >> Jim Balistreri is part of the third generation of his family to run Sendik’s. The first generation launched the business from a cart. ore and more, big box retailers are super-sizing their stores by adding groceries and produce. As a result, if a consumer needs a new Wii game, laundry detergent and a couple of T-shirts, he can also do his grocery shopping at the same place. Small, independent retailers often fear for their business when a big box giant moves in, but this is not a huge concern to Thomas Balistreri III, vice president and co-owner of Sendik’s Fine Foods Inc. “New competition always presents its challenges, but company profile it also helps us stay focused on our mission, on what we Sendik’s Fine Foods Inc. do best – providing customers with an unparalleled Annual revenue: $30 million ping experience,” he says. “People are curious by nature Headquarters: Brookfield, Wis. and may try out a new competitor for a while, but then Employees: Approximately 195 Specialty: Produce and fresh goods they come back to us because we are what they know Thomas Balistreri III, vice president and expect from a food store.” and co-owner: “My grandfather always said, ‘don’t worry about the So what is it about Sendik’s Fine Foods that its loyal competition, just do what you know customer base knows and expects? According to how to do and do it to the best of your ability.’” Balistreri, it is the company’s dedication to quality and service in every aspect of its operation. Those are the M values, he says, that he learned from his grandfather and father, who managed the business before he and other members of the third generation took over. “The No. 1 thing they taught me was always quality – to provide the best quality and best customer service,” he says. “My grandfather always said, ‘don’t worry about the competition, just do what you know how to do and do it to the best of your ability.’” The dedication to quality service started back in 1926 from the back of a cart. Thomas Balistreri Sr. left his native Italy when he was 17 to avoid being forced into Mussolini’s army, and he moved to Milwaukee, where his father, uncle and two brothers already lived. His father and uncle had started a successful wholesale fruit and vegetable business, which his brother Tony eventually took over. Tony peddled the produce on a cart, and when the business grew quickly, he asked Tom to join him. In May 1926, Tom and Tony Balistreri and their father, Salvatore, opened the first Sendik’s location in Shorewood, Wis., just north of Milwaukee. Three years later, they opened a second store. By 1949, there were three Sendik’s > 184 food and drink • spring 2011 •

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food and Drink - Spring 2011

Food and Drink - Spring 2011
Tableside Chat
Table of Contents
News a la Carte
Current Events
FAD Exclusive
A Ripening Field
History in the Making
New Wine Paradigm
Don Sebastiani & Sons/ The Other Guys
St. Julian Winery
Ste. Genevieve Winery
Herzog Wine Cellars
Meier’s Wine Cellar
Oak Ridge Winery
Producers: Keeping Trade Secrets
MaMa Rosa’s Pizza
Gel Spice Co. LLC
Vegetable Juices Inc.
Royal Caribbean Bakery/Caribbean Food Delights
Red Stripe Beer
Robertet Flavors
Annabelle Candy
Andrea Foods
Anchor Brewing
F&F Foods
Santa Sweets Inc.
Hillside Candy
Ricos Products
Sethness Greenleaf Inc.
Wunder-Bar: Automatic Bar Controls
Antigua Distillery
AMES International
Amato’s Bakery
Charlie’s Pride Meats
Citromax Group of Companies
Diamond Bakery
Grindmaster- Cecilware Corp.
Heartland Mill
Kirschenman Enterprises
Rakhra Mushroom Farm
FAME Food Management
Schneider Packaging Equipment Co. Inc.
Sea Harvest Corporation (Pty) Ltd.
Sparrer Sausage Co. Inc.
Jamaican Teas Ltd.
Westminster Cracker Co.
Distributors: Don’t Risk It
The Fricks Company
U.S. Foodservice – Milwaukee Division
Arizona Select Distribution
Fairway Packing Co.
Ingredient Innovations
J.J. Taylor Distributing Co. of Minnesota Inc.
Mastronardi Produce
Milne Fruit Products Inc.
Pellerito Foods
Albion Fisheries Ltd.
RPE Inc.
Retailers: Savoring the Moment
Roadtown Wholesale Trading Ltd.
Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt
Quick Chek
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory
Sendik’s Fine Foods Inc.
Zaro’s Bakery
Balboa Brands
Restaurants: Toss Around Ideas
Sizzler USA
Dick’s Last Resort
Granite City Food & Brewery Ltd.
Liberty Entertainment Group
Roly Poly Franchise Systems
Santa Fe Cattle Co.
Winger’s USA Inc.
Bensi Restaurant Group Inc.
Leo’s Coney Island
Three Things

Food and Drink - Spring 2011