Chances are, if a customer in your restaurant orders ice cream, it's been provided by Big Apple Dairy Desserts.
According to Sal Pesce, vice president of sales, the company has been distributing premium ice cream to foodservice providers in the New York metropolitan areas since the 1970s from its original location in Brooklyn. Now, under new management since 2006, only the best ice cream comes from its warehouse in the Bronx. “We carry all brands,” says Pesce. “Edy's, Haagen Dazs, Schrafft's, Ciao Bella, Maria's Italian ice and Sedutto's tartufo, spumoni and lava cakes You name it, we carry it.”
In fact, Big Apple will be introducing the Sedutto lava cakes, tartufo, and truffles, in booth #1873 at the International Restaurant and Foodservice Show of New York in March in Manhattan at the Javits Center.
The lava cakes, with chocolate as the base layer, have fudge bubbling out of them, with raspberries or mint or chocolate chips on top.
Big Apple distributes to restaurants, ice cream parlors, hospitals, schools and universities, nursing homes, catering halls, country clubs, and stadiums, to name several. “We do every single outlet you can think of in foodservice,” Pesce notes.
Restaurants, though, are the biggest part of the business for Big Apple Dairy Desserts. And in that market segment, what's the hottest item? “Gelato,” he says. “It's really hot right now because it’s a fad that has hit and is growing. Gelato is lighter than ice cream, lower in calories, with a very distinctive taste. We keep adding flavors. The most popular new flavor is sea salt caramel. It took off like a rocket!”
Pesce is proud to point out that much of the ice cream it distributes – like Schrafft's and Sedutto – are only available at high-end restaurants. “Unlike many national brands in the marketplace, you won’t find these in retail or grocery stores. If someone gets hooked on that dessert in a restaurant, they can’t go to a supermarket and get it. That makes a restaurant stand out. They even put brand names on the menu, they're so proud of them.”
The company also custom-caters, he says. “Any type of point-of-sale, or signage, and where approved, we supply our equipment. The bigger distributors don't do this.
We specialize in ice cream and our product is always maintained at minus-15 or minus-20, which is important for consistency,” he says. “Our drivers fully understand and are dedicated to ice cream. We don’t have large minimums in Manhattan, which is huge for restaurants. And we deliver Monday through Friday and between Memorial and Labor Day, we run trucks on Saturday, too. You can get a delivery any day. For restaurants that don’t have a lot of storage, we can make frequent deliveries.”
Pesce says that the last impression most people have when eating out is dessert. “If the dessert's not good, you're not going back. We make sure you do.”
For more information, call 718-518-8700.