‘Little Italy in the Bronx’ brand expands product offerings

The Belmont Business Improvement District and Summer Garden Food announce two new additions including imported Italian gnocchi and bronze die pasta made from Tuscan wheat to the portfolio of the ‘Little Italy in the Bronx’ products, which already includes seven sauce varieties from cherry tomato to arrabbiata. Sourced from Tuscany, the new pasta and traditional Italian gnocchi will be available at stores nationwide beginning in early 2020, including spaghetti, angel hair, linguine, rigatoni, rotini and farfalle.

“Our mission at the Belmont Business Improvement District is to promote and expand the economic wellbeing of our local business community and the iconic Arthur Avenue neighborhood, by promoting our ‘Little Italy in the Bronx’ brand, our strong ethnic heritage and traditions. Our community has been deeply rooted in our Italian heritage for over a century,” said Peter Madonia, chairman of the Belmont BID. “When Summer Garden Food first approached us about a partnership about the sauce line, it seemed like a natural fit.”

Headquartered in Youngstown, OH and operated by Zidian Group, Summer Garden Food was originally founded as a family-owned and operated business in 1948 by the late John Zidian who first immigrated from Italy. “As a company, we are always looking to expand our footprint and launch a premium pasta sauce. After searching for the right partner, we found that the Arthur Avenue neighborhood was a perfect fit not only due to its history, but also because the amount of artisan shops and restaurants that are all concentrated in this unique neighborhood. We simply couldn’t find another area like this outside of Italy,” said Mike Audi, national vice president of Sales for Summer Garden Foods.

Originally launched in January 2018, the Little Italy Bronx pasta sauces are now in over 6,000 stores in the U.S., including ACME, Meijer, Publix, Safeway, ShopRite, Stop and Shop, Jewel and more.

In addition to the Tuscan pasta, the Belmont BID and Summer Garden Food are currently working on introducing Little Italy in the Bronx Gnocchi. While the Tuscan pasta features 100% wheat from the Tuscan countryside and water from the springs of Valdichiana, the Gnocchi will consist of 80% potato and 20% wheat flour made in the Calabria region.

Unlike most pasta sauce plants in the U.S. that utilize large kettles and silos of tomato paste, all Little Italy in the Bronx Sauce are crafted in small-batch production, which avoids overcooking tomatoes. Summer Garden Foods produces Little Italy in the Bronx sauce in small kettles creating more of a sauce that consumers would find in Italy using ingredients from the garden and simply cooked for a short time.

A portion of proceeds of the Little Italy Bronx pasta sauces and products go towards the Belmont BID to help preserve the Arthur Avenue neighborhood and traditions for generations to come. As an economic and cultural engine, the Belmont neighborhood hosts thousands of regional and local shoppers, as well as domestic and international tourists each year, making it one of the busiest and well-known communities in New York City.

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