Angelo’s Fresh Market owners no strangers to the food business
BY CASEY TONER firstname.lastname@example.org August 25, 2013 4:28PM
Carla Bolin stands outside Angelo's Fresh Market in Flossmoor. | Casey Toner~Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 27, 2013 6:23AM
Bryan Oedzes wants to show you a world of restaurant-quality foods at Angelo’s Fresh Market in 10 minutes or less.
The Italian speciality shop sells everything, including milk-fed veal, uncured bacon, burgers made of brisket, sirloin and short-rib, spinach stuffed ravioli, cheese ravioli, and veal osso bucco tortellaci. It is located at 1044 Sterling Ave., Flossmoor.
“We decided we’d put together a small retail express concept that provides these foods and does it in a very quick setting,” Oedzes said. “We understand people don’t want to go to their local grocery store and spend an hour there.”
Oedzes, the vice president of South Holland-based Dutch Valley Foods, opened the store in July with his partner Carla Bolin, of Chicago Heights.
Bolin, 49, is no stranger to the food industry. Her family used to own the Italian restaurant chain Angelo’s with locations in Chicago Heights and Country Club Hills. When she was 12 years old, she started making pizzas at the restaurants. Later, she worked as a server, bartender and then a manager.
Although her heart was still in the food business, she didn’t want to work in a restaurant again due to the demands of the work.
“I don’t want to live there — the hours at a restaurant are way worse than at the store,” Bolin said. “I didn’t want to do a full restaurant so we figured we’d join forces and get the best of the best. We have the best olive oil, the best balsamic vinegars and the best steaks.”
The food sold at Angelo’s is purchased from niche vendors. Angelo’s buy its steaks, for example, from Fred Linz, who also sells meat to Michael Jordan’s Steakhouse, Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse and other well-known city establishments. Angelo’s Fresh Market sells its dry-aged porterhouse steak for $24.99 a pound.
Dutch Valley Foods supplies the store’s veal, while Angelo’s Fresh Market buys its sausage from the family that used to run the locally famous Speciality Shop in Chicago Heights, which has closed. Bolin said she knows the Gianetti family, who ran the sausage store, and asked them to make some of their signature foods. They obliged.
Bolin said that by the end of the year, she hoped to open up two other Italian speciality shop franchises and begin building a national franchise chain.
“Everything has gone well,” Bolin said. “The word of mouth has been beyond what was projected or expected.”