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    Gristedes Adds Cubans to Online Offering

    NEW YORK -- Gristedes Supermarkets here continues to broaden its national e-commerce presence, most recently with Cubans--sandwiches, that is, in partnership with Freeport, N.Y.-based Roadhouse Foods.

    NEW YORK -- Gristedes Supermarkets here continues to broaden its national e-commerce presence, most recently with Cubans--sandwiches, that is, in partnership with Freeport, N.Y.-based Roadhouse Foods.

    The grocer is selling Roadhouse's six-count Original Havana Roadhouse Mini Cuban Sandwiches online through Amazon.com's Gourmet Food store and xpressgrocer.com, which the grocer operates.

    Via xpressgrocer.com, Gristedes began focusing on delivering grocery items to Manhattan residents, and has since launched a campaign to expand its online food division through a partnership with Amazon, as a way to offer Gristedes food products across the United States.

    "Purchasing food items online is a segment that is quickly gaining acceptance with consumers as a purchase that can be completed as easily as any other purchase made on the Net," said Roadhouse Foods c.e.o. Scott Bergman in a statement. "Gristedes is not only making a concentrated effort to position themselves as a leading nationwide online grocery retailer, but also to ensure that consumers are offered a unique variety of food products such as our Original Havana Roadhouse Cuban Sandwich, which has been a successful new product for many retailers."

    This Caribbean culinary favorite consists of ham, roast pork, Swiss cheese, and a pickle on authentic Cuban bread, all of which are toasted in a sandwich press, or "plancha."

    Roadhouse c.m.o. Peter Standhart told Progressive Grocer: "Gristedes is carrying our six-count mini Cuban sandwich in all of its stores. It's the only item they carry at this time, as it's the only item we offer at this time. We are lauching six new items in Sept 2005 and hope to increase our presence at Gristedes. The new items are as follows: Fresh Corn Sandwiches (Arepas) in two flavors (Plain, Jalapeno), Sweet Fried Plantains (Maduros), Fried Green Plantains (Tostones), Beef Empanadas, and a five-ounce Cuban Sandwich, larger than our current mini Cuban offered at Gristedes."

    Referring to the online partnerhsip with the grocer, Standhart added: "It was Gristedes who partnered with Amazon to go beyond New York City. We simply benefited from their parntership with Amazon."

    The Cuban sandwiches join an online assortment under the Gristedes banner that includes prepared meals, seafood, Certified Angus Beef, gourmet cheeses, fruits and vegetables, dairy products, and chocolate. Currently, the Roadhouse Cuban sandwich is one of the Gristedes items eligible for a special order: Purchasers get a gift certificate good for $10 off a future Amazon purchase when they spend at least $50 on Gristedes products.

    Gristedes operates about 50 stores, most of them in Manhattan.

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