ALBERTSON'S ADDS PASTRIES TO COFFEE SHOP MENU

DALLAS -- Albertson's Coffee Shops here are sweetening sales by adding gourmet pastries to their menu.Following the success of their Coffee Shop venue -- located in selected Albertson's stores -- the retail chain wanted to expand their menu selections and offer more variety to their ever increasing line of customers.That expansion came into being when Albertson's reached an agreement with a local

DALLAS -- Albertson's Coffee Shops here are sweetening sales by adding gourmet pastries to their menu.

Following the success of their Coffee Shop venue -- located in selected Albertson's stores -- the retail chain wanted to expand their menu selections and offer more variety to their ever increasing line of customers.

That expansion came into being when Albertson's reached an agreement with a local commercial bakery.

The agreement enlists Massimo Da Milano Inc., also based here, as the exclusive supplier of gourmet pastries for nine Albertson's Coffee Shops in the Dallas/Fort Worth region.

"Massimo had approached us about carrying another of their products," said Jeff Lang, grocery sales manager for Albertson's. "After meeting with them, we discovered they could supply the pastries we wanted to offer in the Coffee Shops."

In operation for about a year, Albertson's Coffee Shops have become a popular resting place for weary shoppers.

The areas host seating for 14 customers and featur ice cream and biscotti, along with Seattle's Best brand coffee selections. MDMI's products are the first pastry items to be carried.

"We wanted to bring in a pastry selection to complement our other menu items," continued Lang. "Massimo had the right products and a good reputation. Their ability to service this area was another plus."

The bakery is supplying a variety of goods including fruit-filled Danish pastries and filled croissants, which sell for 99 cents, and scones, priced at two for $1. Albertson's sets the pricing for all items.

Lang said some locations will offer bundled specials if they feel customer traffic warrants such price deals. That decision is left to the individual Coffee Shops.

Massimo Da Milano Inc. is a commercial bakery that has served the Dallas market for over 14 years.

The bakery offers its customers more than 50 varieties of breads, pastries, cookies and cakes.

Albertson's, based in Boise, Idaho, operates a total of 878 stores, including 72 supermarkets and 746 combination stores.