We all need the kindness of friends, especially now. Rosati’s relationship with their newest customer – Weaver Markets in Denver, PA – an old-fashioned, family-owned quality supermarket since 1968 – started with an inquiry from JoAnn Buckwalter to Don Rutt, their Frozen Food Manager.
Luckily for Rosati, JoAnn is a HUGE fan of Rosati Ice’s full flavor, scoopably delicious Italian ice and also is a high school classmate of Rosati Ice’s owner, Rich Trotter. (We won’t tell you what year they graduated…)
JoAnn, an Adamstown resident, has been shopping at Weaver Markets for 25 years and often wondered why they didn’t carry Rosati Italian ice. Not known to be shy, JoAnn approached Don Rutt and he explained that he purchased Rosati Italian ice years ago when Rosati cups were sold in boxes. She was determined to make a sale and Don asked her to “call her boss”. JoAnn’s exuberance and curiosity paid off!
Rosati delivered 10-ounce cups in twenty flavors and 2.5-quart party pails in five flavors to the store in June. Traditionally, Rosati Ice is sold seasonally in food stores, but, at Weaver Markets, Rosati Ice 10-ounce cups and 2.5-quart party pails are sold all year long.
Smooth Texture. Variety of Flavors!
Unlike other national brands, Don likes the smooth texture, that Rosati is known for, and the variety of Rosati’s flavors. When asked what are his top selling Rosati flavors, Don states, “Root beer is the best, followed by mango, cherry, and blue raz. One of my coworkers bought a WHOLE case of 10-ounce chocolate cups. Rosati’s 10-ounce coconut cup is the go-to refreshing treat of one customer. “When I couldn’t get Rosati in, some people had a fit.” (Yep, that’s what he said!)
Rosati’s 2-quart party pails are found in two spots in the frozen food section – stocked with 5-quart tubs of ice cream. “Rosati sells better there with the bulk items,” claims Don. Rosati’s 10-ounce cups are in coffin cases (strange word to describe a freezer!) along with Rosati’s new 99-calorie Sugar FreeZ 10-ounce cups in cherry, lemon and mango and Rosati’s new fruit ice 10-ounce cups – made with 100% juice – in cherry, lemon, and mango. What a selection!
Ideal Demographics. Rosati Ice Sells Well Here Even in Winter
The location of Weaver Markets and the store’s demographics are a big plus for Rosati. According to Rutt, “There are older housing developments nearby and people walk to the store.” JoAnn adds, “This is a unique area. People come from all over to ‘Antique America’. There are extravaganzas and the hotels are filled. Rosati ice will sell well here, even in the winter.”
Weaver Markets “support and strengthen the surrounding community in every way possible,” according to their web site. For example, with five different school districts nearby, the Weaver folks support each school’s fundraisers. “All of them get their turn and receive 25% of the revenue from The Wagon,” states Don, a 35-year store employee.
JoAnn is a Rosati Ice treasure who is greatly appreciated! “It is especially gratifying to have a longtime good friend who not only recommends your business but solicits the customer directly”, says Rich Trotter, Rosati Ice owner. She visits Weaver Markets twice a week and straightens out the stock for a pleasing display. While she’s there, she can’t resist buying some Rosati Ice cotton candy/blue raz to bring home. Thank goodness for the kindness of friends! Thanks, Don Rutt and JoAnn Buckwalter for bringing our Italian Ices into your favorite store! Visit Weaver Markets today!!
2610 N. Reading Rd
Denver, PA 17517
One of Rosati Ice’s newest distributors, Pointe Dairy, is “a family-owned wholesale food and dairy distribution company serving metro Detroit and beyond,” according to its website, www.pointedairy.com
“Family” is the most important word in the description. Joseph Selvaggio founded the company in 1968 and it’s currently run by his three sons – Anthony, Alex and Joseph, Jr.
Even the PM, Ken George, found his way to the company through “family.” In 1977, his wife, Terri worked for a food store, one of Pointe Dairy’s customer’s.
Unlike many of Rosati’s other distributors, Pointe Dairy is “close to a broadline distributor. We have over 3500 items that we sell to party stores, nursing homes, restaurants. You name it, we handle it”, states Ken.
When asked how they dealt with COVID 19, Ken admits, “In the beginning, it was a nightmare, as restaurants were forced to shut down and we had fewer trucks making deliveries. Fortunately, our retail business went up with single-serve, multi-packs. We held our own and adapted very well.”
Families’ food needs were vital this spring, so Pointe Dairy donated pallets of food intended for the restaurants to Forgotten Harvest and – thru a local Masonic lodge – Feeding the Hungry.
Working at Pointe Dairy for decades, Ken has a great grasp on the industry. “Everyone is getting their fingers in others’ items. It’s becoming a ‘me-too business.’ To distinguish ourselves, we handle different items and high-quality items. For example, we started selling hemp items to area coffee shops.”
Most of our distributor relationships started in person at food shows and this one is no exception. After Joe met Rosati Ice’s owner, Rich Trotter, at a food show, he decided to carry our 2.5-gallon tubs and 10-ounce grab-n-go cups for the dip stores in their area called Whippi Dip (similar to Dairy Queen).
Pointe Dairy is proud to be a master distributor for Unilever, which puts Rosati Ice alongside the nation’s best ice cream and novelty brands including Breyers, Ben & Jerry’s, Mars, Talenti, and Good Humor. “With the addition of dairy-free, nut-free Rosati Ice, our summers have gotten busier.”
Due to increased demand for dairy-free frozen desserts, Pointe Dairy now sells Rosati Ice’s 2.5-gallon tubs to restaurants and scoop shops and their 10-ounce cups to mobile vendors. “Ken states, “Ice cream trucks ask for the Rosati Ice 10-ounce cups, available here in cotton candy/blue raz, cherry, Cry baby sour apple, lemon, mango, patriot, and watermelon. They are a huge seller! Would love to get Rosati’s 4.4- ounce cups into our schools,” admits George.
And why not? “Rosati Ice’s taste is phenomenal with smooth texture, which holds up well in temperature variations.”
Shari Mazzetti, owner, Modern Cone scoop shop, wholeheartedly agrees. “We sell a lot of Rosati. It is very popular, you have no idea! We make an Italian ice slush. Our customers expect Rosati Ice and when we don’t have it, they are upset and disappointed.”
Shari buys a few SKU’s of the 2.5-gallon tubs from Pointe Dairy, who carries Rosati Ice in blue raspberry, cherry, rainbow, cotton candy, lemon, mango, strawberry lemonade, and watermelon.
Three family-owned businesses working together to bring smiles to customers’ faces – manufacturer Rosati Ice, distributor Pointe Dairy and scoop shop Modern Cone! With Rosati Ice, it truly is ‘all in the family’!!
2716 American Drive
Troy, MI 48083
“Be careful what you wish for.” If you are Rosati Ice’s Nate Todd, K-12 school sales associate, he is truly blessed that what he wished for did indeed come true and his career led him to Rosati ice.
After graduation from college, which he admits “was a great experience”, Nate explored an opportunity with his close friend’s father’s business – selling Polish brand water ice. “We almost franchised it,” admits Nate from Fort Wayne, Indiana. I fell in love with the product, but people in the Midwest have no clue what water ice is. Thankfully, the deal fell thru. We successfully failed.”
One door closed and another one quickly opened. Nate recalls meeting Rich Trotter, owner, Rosati Ice at the national school nutrition conference in Dallas. Nate was eager to have a mentor in the Italian ice business so he and Rich simultaneously reached out to Tom Curyto about utilizing Nate to sell both Rosati Ice and Polish Ice to the K-12 school industry.
Todd started with Rosati in 2012 and felt “complete clarity. I knew this is where I am supposed to be.” Nate is blown away by how Rich Trotter “leads and serves.”
Unique in his ability to genuinely connect with people
And the admiration is mutual. Rich states, “Nate is unique in his ability to genuinely connect with people and share the Rosati Ice mission of making school lunches more fun with our dairy-free, frozen fruit juice cups that are naturally colored with no added sugar and meet the fruit requirement for school lunches. Nate represents himself, his family and the Rosati family well with everyone he meets. Nate needs little supervision. For years, he has traveled the country spreading the good news of Rosati Ice and steadily growing our business in over thirty states. He is loved by all with whom he comes in contact.”
His coworker, Sean Trotter continues “Nate is a devoted father and husband, who cares deeply for everyone around him. He and his wife Amber are raising three (soon to be four) beautiful children, and as a member of the Rosati family, he brings this same spirit into his daily work. Nate has an honest desire to be a source of joy to everyone he meets. Approaching his work in this way, allows him to serve his/our customers with grace, and to ultimately bring more smiles into the cafeterias of the schools that we serve.
What we do and what we offer is better than anyone’s.
While schools in the areas Nate covers – Southern CA, TX, NC, S, GA, MD, VA, PA – are trying to figure out the guidelines for in-school learning, he is sensitive to this unique time with the school lunch programs. He readily admits, “What we do and what we offer is better than anyone’s. It’s so exciting!”
Nate’s passion, enthusiasm and spirituality shines through even on phone calls and all throughout this interview. Father of three young children, ages 6, 4, and 2 and a 4th child due in December, Nate teases “We are consistent, having a child every two years.”
When asked what he likes about his job, Nate is quick to answer. “Oh man, I love my job! I am so grateful! The opportunity to meet with child nutrition directors is golden. When I started, many of them were older than me and they had a motherly relationship with me. The work-life balance is ideal! It’s an honor to represent Rosati Ice while providing for my growing family.”
Nate’s impact on the school sales has been noteworthy. Through his diligence, schools in NC, SC, MD and VA have Rosati Ice’s 4.4-ounce cups made with pure apple juice that are Smart Snack approved and meet school nutritional guidelines.
No matter how this school year unfolds, Nate says “This is the time for us to shine.” And we will in schools across the country from sea to shining sea!
Check out www.rosatiice.com for more info on Rosati Ice’s K-12 school cups and for a seasonal pre-order form.
Consumers are the BREAD AND BUTTER of every food manufacturer and Rosati Ice is no exception. Founder Sam Rosati was ONE SMART COOKIE to develop hand-cranked Italian ices in his basement’s home in Philadelphia in 1912.
Throughout the decades, Rosati Ice USED THEIR NOODLE to address not only consumers’ food allergies and dietary restrictions, but product safety too, while consistently producing a delicious, scoopable frozen treat.
“Rosati Italian Icse have great flavor and consistency. I had cherry and chocolate flavors and they were yummy. It reminded me of this old Italian guy in my hometown that made incredible ice and sold it at a roadside stand.” – Doug S., Greenville, SC.
Rosati Ice, along with their distributors, acknowledge that people who are lactose intolerant and/or have nut allergies are unable to eat ice cream and diary-based novelties. Rosati Ice successfully satisfied their cravings. All products – 4.4-ounce, 6-ounce and 10-ounce cups, 2-quart party pails, and 2.5-gallon tubs are made in a dairy-free, nut-free, gluten-free plant.
Consumers have spoken out again and we listened. Their requests for sugar-free Italian ices prompted Rosati Ice to develop SugarFreeZ in three flavors in 10-ounce cups: lemon, cherry and mango – which were sold in selected food chains this most recent summer.
“I am so happy I can enjoy Rosati Ice in the new sugar-free flavors that are stocked at the Kinsley ShopRite in Brodheadsville.” – Laura S., PA
Tamper-Proof Lids, Clear Cups
Consumers want affordable, grab-n-go treats. For the food stores, Rosati Ice developed 10-ounce cups in almost two dozen flavors. For product safety, all 10-ounce Rosati Ice cups are sealed with tamper-proof lids. Because of the clear Rosati cup, what the shopper sees inside is what they get. They can easily see the bright oranges, reds, yellows, and blues, designating the full flavor inside each and every 10-ounce cup. Just ask Jane.
“I ate Rosati water ice as a kid. I recognized the rose on the 10-ounce cup packaging at Acme. The BEST water ice!!! Bought two containers. I have party pails from last summer and still tastes good. LOVE it!” – Jane Y., NJ
To consumers like Doug, Laura, Jane and hundreds of others, they know Rosati Ice is the GREATEST THING SINCE SLICED BREAD. Who wouldn’t agree? Once you taste your first spoonful, you will be hooked.
Now, you can HAVE YOUR CAKE AND EAT IT TOO! Rosati Ice in 6-ounce and 10-ounce cups and 2.5 gallon tubs can be purchased all year from our office/plant/warehouse in suburban Philadelphia, M-F from 8-4. Please call 610-626-1818 to check inventory for your flavors. Please go to the product section of our Rosati Ice web site – www.rosatiice.com – for a complete list of all of Rosati Ice’s flavors.
The September return to school is always an exciting time! Seeing old friends and meeting new teachers makes up somewhat for the sadness in saying goodbye to summer fun.
The start of this 2020 school season is drastically different and emotionally charged. With so many schools going “virtual,” the students will have limited in-classroom learning with all its benefits. While it may seem trivial compared to the other stark differences, students in many states will be unable to join their buddies at lunch and enjoy a 100% frozen fruit juice cup of dairy-free, fat-free Rosati Italian Ice.
The Rosati team goes to the head of the class as they take the necessary steps to craft our 4.4 ounce school cups, “smart snack approved” (yea, Rosati!) that count as a ½ cup fruit serving on school lunch menus across the country.
Rosati Ice school cups are Major Allergen Free
The Rosati team has dotted its i’s and crossed its t’s. Rosati Ice school cups are made with 100% fruit juice, naturally colored and NO sugar added. All Rosati school cups are made in a dairy-free, nut-free facility and are major allergen free! An A+ all the way around! That’s a report card every parent and guardian will love!
Rosati Ice President, Rich Trotter, reminisces “When I first bought Rosati Ice 24 years ago, I didn’t like the novelty industry business model – busy summer, flat winter.” With that in mind, we developed new formulations and packaging and reached out to the school nutrition directors. And the rest, as they say, is History…and Geography, as Rosati Ice is in schools in 25 states.
“Thanks to the noteworthy efforts of the Rosati Ice sales team – Nate Todd, Nick DeKam and Sean Trotter – Rosati’s presence in the schools has grown tremendously,” states Trotter. From food service managers and school directors to parents and students, Rosati Ice consistently gets high marks from everyone.
School directors “love how we listen to what they need and create specific cups to fit in line with what they believe the kids will love. Rosy ‘moji is our top seller, followed by Rosati ice Cry Baby sour cherry,” states Nick DeKam, sales associate.
And the kids? Nick continues, “Every student I’ve ever shown Rosati Ice cups to makes their eyes light up. They sit down and within minutes they want more. Everyone loves the Rosati Ice flavors and smoothness of the italian ice cups. The kids love to find the new ‘moji face each time they go up to the lunch line.”
Lauren Couchois, RD, SNS, Director, Lee County schools, explains “Rosati Ice’s cups are not only a fun, creative way to provide a fruit serving to our students, but they taste great too! We love the Rosati Ice cups, especially the Rosy ‘moji cups as they are super popular with our students.”
Sean Trotter shares a story about a young student activist who brought back our Cry Baby Ices. “A school district in CA that offered our Cry Baby cups every other week suddenly stopped ordering. We learned there was a new child nutrition director and that person decided to remove the Cry Baby ice cups from the menu. However, a month later, we started getting orders again, and they were ordering twice as much as before. We soon found out that there was a girl in third grade who created a petition to bring the Cry Baby back. She got the signatures of nearly all of the students in her school, and shortly thereafter, they started to menu our Crybabies every week! It always amazes me how a small Rosati Ice cup brings so much joy to students everywhere.”
In 2019, Rosati Ice developed Good Fortune Ice with a fun fortune printed under every lid and refreshing orange Italian ice inside. Nate Todd, sales associate, boasts, “Kids and directors remarked how creative and fun it has been to find a fortune under the Rosati Ice lid.”
Every month from October to April, Rosati Ice offers fun, seasonal packaging and authentic flavors – Chillin’ Bat sweet orange ice for October, Givin’ Thanks apple pie ice for Thanksgiving, Sno’ Joe wild berry ice for December, Happy New Year strawberry lemonade ice for January, Swee’ Heart sweet cherry ice for February, Luck O’ the Ice sour apple ice for March, and Hip-Hoppin’ tropical fruit ice for April.
Fun and flavor in every cup for every season, Rosati Ices make the Honor Roll for parents and students alike!
Check out www.rosatiice.com for more info on Rosati Ice’s K-12 school cups and for a seasonal pre-order form.
Mobile vending. You hear and see those words a lot in the novelty industry, and especially at this time of the year. Quite simply, it’s “Bringing you more frozen treats than you and your sweet tooth could ever ask for,” according to Cool Concessions’ website.
We know a bit about “mobile vending” as our founder, Sam Rosati, known as “the King of Water Ice,” sold his popular italian ice from horse-drawn wagons throughout his beloved Philadelphia and at the New Jersey shore.
Sam could never have imagined that folks would google “water ice” and “Italian ice” today to find his 108-year-old company’s dairy-free, nut-free frozen treat.
Who better to explain this unprecedented mobile vending season than loyal customer and friend, Peter Hamouroudis, President, Cool Concessions (their name makes me crave something cool).
Fresh out of college, “the business found me,” recalls Pete. “I thought I’d give it a shot and I saw an upside to it. I started with one truck and now have nine. Our business has grown because of social media. My wife, Laura, is the backbone of our business, handling logistics and operations. In 2004, I met Rosati Ice owner, Rich Trotter, at a trade show in Atlantic City and we started doing business together.”
Peter explains, “Due to COVID 19, our biggest challenge occurred in the spring, when many events were not only postponed, but cancelled. It really hurt our sales. Luckily, we were able to pivot and promoted “contact-less” curbside deliveries via Facebook and Instagram. We established a minimum order and designated a few trucks for this. Customers preordered and paid through Venmo. They appreciated seeing us come out for them. This offset loosing special event jobs.”
Cool Concessions has served treats at kids’ parties, weddings, corporate events, block parties, family reunions, and fundraisers. Anyplace in New Jersey and anytime from March till October where people want to have a fun time and enjoy refreshing treats like our full-flavored, scoopably delicious Rosati Ice Italian ices.
The names of the companies they’ve worked with reads like a “Who’s Who” – Princeton University, Adidas, Bloomberg, Special Olympics, NJ Transit, Google. Pete and his team have worked numerous events, but one stands out in his mind – for 24 hours, our truck was parked at JFK Hospital so employees on every shift could enjoy a treat. We fed about 800 folks.”
In addition, Cool Concessions is a wholesale supplier of novelty ice cream and bulk Rosati Ice Italian ice. They sell Rosati Ice in 2.5-gallon tubs in cherry, blue raz, lemon, rainbow and mango and 6-ounce cups in rosy ‘moji and 10-ounce cups in cotton candy/blue raz, cherry, watermelon, patriot, mango, Cry Baby sour apple and lemon lime.
Of course, we had to ask Pete about his favorite. “Lemon, it’s filled with flavor. Rosati Ice’s flavor selection is good.” And his customers? “Rosati’s 10-ounce cups in cotton candy/blue raspberry are our best sellers. Our customers like Rosati’s big flavor. In fact, some customers are so loyal to Rosati Ice, they will not try another Italian ice brand.”
Peter and Rich Trotter share a passion outside of the novelty business – both are basketball coaches.
“Managing people from March till October, helps me manage my basketball players. I don’t take a cookie cutter approach; I have to be understanding and communicate. It’s the little things that keep me sharp,” acknowledges Pete. And Rich Trotter would agree! Go teams!
86 Mantoloking Road
Brick Township, NJ 08723
For many families, summertime means having fun at an amusement park. “Fun, Food & Fantasy”, according to Knoebels Amusement Resort’s website has entertained families for nearly a century. While this season has been remarkably different (to say the least) from previous ones, Knoebels remains remarkably unique, in favorable ways, from other popular destinations.
For starters, you do not have to pay admission to the resort. That’s right! “America’s largest free-admission amusement park.” I like this perk, since I don’t enjoy the rides like my roller-coaster-loving, thrill-seeker husband and son. Instead, you pay as you go. Next, they have a family-friendly campground in a tranquil setting away from the hustle and bustle of the big cities. Ah…who wouldn’t want to chill out there now?
In between the thrills, head on over to The Shack for “your chill”- Rosati Italian Ice. It is decadently delicious, smooth and so refreshing. The ideal dairy-free, nut-free frozen treat!
Due to COVID 19, Matt Schell, Food Service Manager, consolidated the concession stands to offer everything in one stand called The Shack, across from Old Mill Ice Cream.
This is where families have 8 Rosati Ice flavors (mango, watermelon, lemon, blue raz, cherry, classic rainbow (cherry, lemon, blue raz), root beer, and sleep with the fishes) to choose from. Matt states, “Our most popular selling Rosati flavors are blue raz, cherry, rainbow, and root beer!”
When asked what Schell likes about Rosati Ice, he boasts, “I like the consistency and the strong, bold flavors. You can tell it’s a high-quality product!” Michelle Zimmerman, from our long-time distributor, InstantWhip Foods, agrees and adds “Rosati Ice’s name sells itself. It resonates with a lot of people from their youth. The Rosati folks are easy to work with and provide great point-of-sale items.”
Guests can enjoy their Rosati Italian Ice in either a small 6-ounce cup for $3.00, a large 10-ounce cup for $4.50 or layered with soft serve for a gelati for $6.00. It’s scoopably delicious!
The owners and management of Knoebels Amusement Resort are no strangers to hard times and park closures – from 1943 when the park closed due to WWII, to 1972 when Tropical Storm Agnes flooded the park and then again in 2006 when 90% of the park was submerged in water. However, the same resilience and fortitude that got them through those trying times will get them through the pandemic as well!
Behind their masks, Knoebel employees are smiling, knowing they are giving their guests a true “Taste of Summer” in this topsy-turvy world. Rosati Ice – creating smiles since 1912!
Family owned and operated since 1926, Knoebels Amusement Resort was voted “the best food park in the world” 18 times (WOW)! The nation’s original Italian ice, Rosati Ice, is proud to be along for the ride. Let’s go for 20!!
391 Knoebels Blvd
Elysburg, PA 17824
When most of us think of “family” we immediately think of our biological families. You know, your mom, dad, your siblings, grandparents. Well, if you work for Clifton-Heights based Rosati Ice, you are lucky and blessed to have an extended family.
And no one is more thankful for his Rosati Ice extended family than Mr. Hong Ly, who was born in Vietnam and came to work in our plant 18 years ago.
Mr. Hong, as he is affectionately known, was a junior officer in the South Vietnamese Army when the communists over ran the country in 1975. He was placed in a ‘re-education camp’ for years and was slowly dying away when his captors released Mr. Hong to his family who nursed him back to health. At the family’s first opportunity, they escaped Vietnam by floating away on a boat praying that a ship would pick them up. After many days at sea their hopes were realized and some time later, Mr. Hong and his family migrated to Philadelphia where he has resided for the last forty years.
The smile on his face says everything. His coworker, logistics manager, Pat, definitely agrees. Mr. Hong always has a smile on his face and greets me with a big hello, how are you doing and good morning and afternoon.”
Never missing work, Mr. Hong always is pleasant and respectful with his co-workers and is considered a Rosati Ice treasure. He is most proud of his children and six beautiful grandchildren.
Recently, the Rosati family was interviewed by PHL 17 Weekend Philler producer, William Lehan.. Mr. Hong couldn’t have been happier to speak into the microphone and declare his favorite Rosati Italian ice flavor. Actually, he has a few favorite flavors – cherry, pineapple and coconut!
Anyone who has tasted our refreshing, flavorful Italian ice in our 6-oz, 10-ounce, 2-quart party pails will agree.
“Everyone feels like family.” “Like family to me.” “They are like my family.” “One great big family” “Proudly say they are my family.”
No matter who says it or how, Rosati Ice is a family business and we are proud to have Mr. Hong Ly as part of ours!
“Happiness is just an ice cream truck away” is the slogan on our great friends and distributor’s web site – Big Bell Ice Cream in Minneapolis, MN. CEO (Chief Eating Officer, get it?) James Freid and his wife Karen offer ice cream truck catering and special event services throughout the Twin Cities, and they couldn’t be happier.
Big Bell Ice Cream has that right – happiness IS buying a refreshing treat from an ice cream truck, especially when the heat and humidity crank up. And, especially now, with folks working from home and parents home with their young children. Who doesn’t have fond memories of eagerly waiting in line and tiptoeing to see all of the colorful cool stickers on the trucks and deciding which one to choose?
I’ve gotta admit, to this day I still can’t decide.
In addressing the current situation, James claims, “Ice cream trucks lend themselves to social distancing. Customers spread out while waiting in line. We held off an extra month getting our trucks out so we could train our drivers and enable customers to get accustomed to the new routine of social distancing.”
James fondly recalls when he met Rich Trotter, President, Rosati Ice, with his wife Debbie and his young daughter at the Ice Cream Convention. “Rich is THE nicest guy I wanted to buy from, but never did.”
Lo and behold, eight years ago, he started buying from Rosati Ice and “it’s been wonderful ever since.”
“Rosati Ice’s large appeal is that it’s refreshing (we hear that all the time!) and Rosati Ice quenches your thirst. The cups are easy to eat from and carry around. Rosati Ice is scoopable!” (That’s the Rosati ice pledge!)
When looking for a dairy-free frozen dessert made in a nut-free facility, the Freids were pleased to add Rosati Italian Ice especially “for kids that can’t have ice cream. We didn’t want them to be left out,” says Karen. There’s Rosati for them. We have eight flavors on all of our trucks. Rosati ice is selling well, especially the Cry Baby ice and rosy ‘moji ice.”
It’s not only about the product, but the promotion that creates happiness. “Point-of-sale is everything,” admits James. Rosati Ice’s decals display the cups nicely, they make the product look good, and they draw people in.” What more could you ask for?
While business has slowed down drastically due to COVID 19 and they’ve had problems hiring drivers, James and Karen have kept their sense of humor and reminisce about busier times. Leading up to last year’s July 4th, they worked nonstop till 2AM (that’s not a typo) Well, not this year. This spring, they missed having their trucks on college campuses during finals week. “The students would take a break, come out and buy a frozen novelty. Nope, not this year.
Challenges may continue, but Big Bell Ice Cream and Rosati Ice will forge ahead to bring happiness to folks with ice cream, novelties, and Rosati Italian ice.
3218 Snelling Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55406
The dream of “Big Daddy” Don DeConna, a WWII Veteran born in Pittsburgh, has grown to be Rosati’s oldest customer and a respected leader in the industry. DeConna Ice Cream is headquartered in Reddick, Florida. Unsatisfied working in the steel mills, Don decided to take his love of ice cream to a warm, sunny area and moved to Miami in 1947. And the rest is… well, sweet history.
Rosati Ice and DeConna have been on a sweet journey together since current owner, Vince DeConna’s dad managed the company and stayed active into his ‘80’s (now that’s a legacy!). Vince bought the company from his dad in 1990 and his son, Nick joined him in 2015.
Similarly, Sean Trotter, Rosati Ice owner Rich Trotter’s son, joined the company in 1997. Two generations of two legendary companies are collaborating to bring smiles to folks’ faces. What could be sweeter than that?!
The similarities of these family businesses continue through the years. After WWII, Rosati Ice and DeConna moved from their original locations to larger, more modern facilities to manufacture and warehouse more product and serve their growing number of customers.
Vince fondly recalls when Rich Trotter met with him before he bought Rosati in 1997 and they quickly became friends and continued the business relationship started by Sam Rosati and Don DeConna.
Rosati’s Italian Water Ice product line includes 4.4-ounce “school” cups, 6-ounce cups for mobile vendors and 10-ounce cups and 2-quart party pails for food stores in addition to 2.5-gallon tubs for scoop shops. That’s a lot of SKUs! “Anything Rosati carries we sell,” states Vince.
In the early years, “we just carried Rosati Ice’s 2.5-gallon tubs and then Rosati’s 6-ounce cups. When Rosati started producing 10-ounce cups, we brought them in.” Vince continues, “folks love the 10-ounce cups!”
Together, fifteen years ago, Rich and Vince developed the “typhoon” cone cups – blue raz lemonade Italian ice with a gum ball at the bottom of each cone. “They’ve been a great seller ever since. We sell a lot of them across Florida and Georgia.”
When Rosati added 4.4-ounce Italian ice cups to meet the nutritional guidelines of schools, guess who brought them in? DeConna Ice Cream.
And why not? According to Vince, “Rosati Italian water ices are flavorful and refreshing with great texture, great selection, colorful packaging graphics and scoopable.”
Rich Trotter can agree with Vince’s observation as Rosati’s production heats up at this time. “Consumers prefer Italian ice over ice cream as the temperature goes up. This is peak time for Rosati!”
Rosati has helped DeConna increase their sales by “offering another product to sell in the hot months.” For example, decades ago Vince DeConna worked with the manager of a water park in Florida. They set up their dip freezer, filled it with 2.5-gallon tubs of Rosati ice – which they bought every week – and have been buying ever since (until the current shutdown due to COVID 19).
Thanks for the sweet journey, may it continue until a third generation joins DeConna Ice Cream.
6300 W Highway 318
Reddick, FL 32686
“Just do the best you can, that’s all anyone can ask,” my mom always advised me. That sentiment rings true for Michelle Barton, part of the husband (Bobby) and wife team who own Southern Ice Cream, serving the Houston metro area and nearby towns,” according to their website.
When discussing the challenging current economic environment, Michelle says, “We are making it work. Our entire team is pitching in to keep everything moving smoothly.”
Due to COVID 19, Michelle talks about how they “reinvented themselves.” For example, they offer a “sundae ice cream kit” (How fun! I want one!) with hands-free delivery. It’s “super cute,” she explains, and it’s “a way to connect.” Connect they sure did, from kids buying them to show appreciation for their grandparents to parents purchasing the sundae kits for their graduating children.
Mobile vending is the core of their business, now with some necessary adaptations like plexiglass shields for event carts.
Our Houston area friends at Southern Ice Cream sell Rosati Italian Ice 6-ounce cups to mobile vendors for special events at schools, churches and businesses, to name a few. Popular flavors include Cry Baby cherry, watermelon, rosy‘moji, and Cry Baby sour apple. They also sell Rosati Ice’s 2.5 gallon bulk cans in lemon, cherry and mango. “No one beats Rosati’s mango italian water ice. It’s outstanding!”
Like Rosati Ice, Southern Ice Cream found a cause that resonates with them – Child Advocates of Fort Bend. “We are inspired by their mission and how they help.” Proceeds from pushcart rentals go towards the fight against child abuse.
When asked what she likes about having Rosati Ice as a valued vendor, Michelle quickly claims “Great people. Easy to work with. Good consistent product.” And Rosati Ice values this treasured long-term relationship as well.
Together, we will do the best we can. Every day. In every way.
13755 Greenland Drive
Stafford, TX 77477
Family means everything to Al Mele of Havertown (located in the Greater Philadelphia area), our newest mobile vendor. In fact, when asked about his family’s importance, he boasted “absolutely.”
Mele is not new to the food business and, in particular, Rosati Ice. Al admits, “ I was always involved in the food business, one way or another.” As a teen in Northeast Philly, he had a truck. And you guessed it – he sold Rosati water ice from this truck. And, here he is four decades later with another truck. And Rosati Ice.
When selecting his company’s name, Al chose the name “Owl” as his nieces and nephews affectionately call him Uncle Owl.
Al’s refurbished truck has family “literally” painted all over it. His niece created the graphics and his daughter painted the truck in fun, vibrant colors.
Excited to start a mobile vending business again, Al “came back to Rosati Ice”. Last fall, Al contacted the century old company because he knew about Rosati’s superior service and dairy free frozen desserts. “It’s a great product, love the scoopability”. Plus, Mele admired Rosati’s family values which are in line with his. “I am so grateful for Rosati Ice’s help and continued support” explains Al.
Al carries Rosati’s 6-ounce italian water ice cups in Emoji (cotton candy/blue raz), Cry Baby apple, Cry Baby watermelon, and Cry Baby cherry. His offerings also include Rosati Ice’s chocolate, classic rainbow, mango, cotton candy, cherry, blue raz, lemon, and orange cream in Rosati’s 2.5 gallon tubs.
Rosati Ice President Rich Trotter says “Al is quintessential Americana. When faced with daunting challenges, Al, rather than retreat, embraced and overcame them. As a result, Al shifted his focus to press forward in this new venture. We are blessed that Rosati Ice is the beneficiary of the new direction Al chose to pursue!”
Al continues to count on his family in Havertown and now he can rely on his new Rosati Ice Clifton Heights family as well!
Owl’s Water Ice and Treats
Havertown, PA 19083
Our newest customer, Chuck & Debbie Geisel of Chuck’s Homemade Ice Cream, in Southport, NC, may have moved from NJ to NC to “retire” but the pair are anything but. Along with his wife, they own a scoop shop in charming, downtown Southport. They hope to open a second location in their town’s new shopping center. And if that’s not enough, Chuck makes and sells his legendary ice cream to many stores in Brunswick County.
Nothing makes Chuck happier than churning out 400 tubs of ice cream. In one week! Yes, you read that correctly. That’s the equivalent of 21,200 six-ounce cups of ice cream!!!! Chuck’s customer service acumen keeps him a scoop ahead. For example, he recommends to each of his customers that they have a “signature” flavor which he develops. The recent one, called Noah’s Ark, is topped with animal crackers.
Despite the 50 flavors he makes and sells, Chuck was looking to expand his offerings. Chuck explains, “I knew of Rosati Ice when I was working decades ago in New Jersey. He easily recalls, “I remember how good it was – smooth, creamy, and flavorful.” Got that right, Chuck! Taste. Texture. Color. Only Rosati Ice has all three!
“I wanted a dairy-free frozen dessert because folks were asking for a lactose-free novelty. I know it’s taking off, because my first customer – The Scoop in Holden Beach – quickly sold a few cases of Rosati Ice’s 10-ounce cups and already ordered more.” The Geisel’s now have Rosati’s premium 2.5 gallon tubs in their scoop shop.
Chuck’s passion for ice cream has carried over to Rosati Italian ice. Knowing Chuck, by the end of this summer, not only will his ice cream be in several mom-and-pop shops, but so will Rosati Italian ice. So glad, you aren’t “retired” yet, Chuck. Keep on scoopin’!
Chuck’s Homemade Ice Cream
607 N. Howe Street
Southport, NC 28461