We were born on October 1, 1975 in St. Paul, right on the corner of Grand & Cleveland. And we’re still there — and in 21 other locations. Everybody who runs this company lives here. We’re you and you’re us.
Read on, Friends & Neighbors:
IT’S WHERE WE STARTED
WHERE WE ARE & WHAT WE BUY
When we started our business and open our first modest restaurant in 1975, we did so with excitement, trepidation, and a sense of responsibility. We saw this as an opportunity. Yes, to make money, but also to bring some new foods (New York-style pizza and hot hoagie sandwiches) to this area. Within days we also quickly began to understand the obligation we had to care for those our success or failure were most dependent on, our employees and you, our customers.
Since our restaurants have been supported by the communities we serve, it has always been important to us that we, in turn, support those communities. Long-time DAVANNI’S customers probably know that we are a home-grown company with local ownership. You may have heard one of our spokespeople say that the money you spend at DAVANNI’S stays here. Of course, we live here. Of course, we employ members of your family, friends and neighbors. Of course, their earnings end up getting reinvested in the local economy (food, clothing, housing, automobiles, furniture, entertainment, etc.). Because we are local, the money we invest in new restaurants, the repairs and remodeling we do, the taxes we pay, all go back into our communities. What may not be quite as obvious, are some of the other ways we choose to reinvest in the health (financial, civic and otherwise) of this place we all call home. Read the articles on local partnering if you are interested in learning more about what we do with every dollar you choose to spend with us.
LOCAL SOURCING, LOCAL INVESTMENT
One of the focuses of being environmentally responsible and “green” is for businesses to source their supplies locally. The reason is simple, to conserve fuel and therefore minimize emissions by reducing trucking costs.
However, we believe there is another reason why it is a good idea and therefore a goal of ours to source goods locally. By now, we hope you know that we are a local company, started in St. Paul in 1975. You may have seen our table tees stating that the money you spend at DAVANNI’S stays in our communities. Well, that is not only true when it comes to the 1100 people who make up the DAVANNI’S family (some of whom are probably your friends and neighbors — even family), but that good is multiplied many times over when you include the companies that we rely on for the products we use.
Take, for example, Jerry’s Produce of St. Paul. Jerry’s was our first supplier in 1975 and the partnership with Jerry Hurley and his family continues today. The fact that Jerry is blind probably helped us get credit initially, because he couldn’t see how young we were at the time.
Or there’s Burnett Dairy Co-Op in Grantsburg, WI. Many of the large cheese manufacturers in the mid-70’s were controlled by Mafia money. Although it was more expensive, we believed that the mozzarella cheese produced by Gary Olson, the crafts people and dairy farmers/owners of Burnett was the very best. Our good taste has been confirmed not once, but twice since then, with Burnett’s mozzarella cheese being named “Best in the World” in international competition.
There are dozens of stories like this when it comes to the partnerships forged between DAVANNI’S and our suppliers since we started in 1975. Since that time, the dollars you have spent at DAVANNI’S have gone back into and impacted our community through the lives of thousands of DAVANNI’S employees and probably hundreds of thousands of our neighbors.
The map linked below pinpoints where over 90% of DAVANNI’S ingredients come from and where our food dollars are spent each month. It is locally sourced ingredients that we use to make the best pizzas and hoagies anywhere.