MAPLE HEIGHTS, Ohio -- Finast Friendly Markets here is selling locally made pierogies in the frozen-food aisle.
The pierogies are made by Parma Pierogies, a local restaurant catapulted into the limelight after a visit from President Clinton, explained David Hughey, store manager of the Finast Friendly Markets in Fairview Park, Ohio.
The restaurant's owner, Mary Poldruhi, achieved national attention after two visits from the chief executive and coverage in Time Magazine as an exemplar of American entrepreneurship. She single-handedly raised almost $250,000 to open her first restaurant in Parma, a suburb of Cleveland, in 1991, billing her cuisine as fast, home-cooked Polish food.
Finast began selling Parma Pierogies in September. Hughey explained that they are merchandised with the other pierogies in the frozen case.
Finast is carrying five flavors: potato, potato and cheese, Joey's Pizza, sauerkraut, and broccoli and cheddar.
Hughey said Finast will eventually expand the selection to include all 10 flavors the restaurant sells. Currently six stores in the Cleveland area are carrying Parma Pierogies, but eventually they will be in all 40 stores, Hughey said.
Poldruhi expects a full rollout in the Cleveland area by the first quarter of next year, and she told SN she's negotiating with Tops Friendly Markets in Buffalo, N.Y., which would carry the line in 1998. She also plans to do more demos in the stores.