A beloved Ann Arbor institution, Zingerman’s businesses attract thousands of visitors every year. It all began when Paul Saginaw and Ari Weinzweig opened Zingerman’s Deli opened in 1982, in an historic building near the Ann Arbor Farmers’ Market. “It was just the two of us and two employees,” says Ari. “We envisioned a really unique deli serving traditional Jewish food that would be a great place to work and a great place to eat.” Zingerman’s has now grown into a community of nine different businesses, 22 partners, three staff partners and 700 employees. Along with the deli are Zingerman’s Bake House, ZingTrain, Zingerman’s Catering & Events, Zingerman’s Mail Order, Zingerman’s Creamery, Zingerman’s Roadhouse, Zingerman’s Coffee and Zingerman’s Candy.

According to Ari, the latest endeavor is Cornman Farm, a real working farm located on 27 pristine acres in Dexter, MI. The 1834 farmhouse and a barn were restored and renovated to accommodate events including weddings, private dinners, cooking demonstrations and meetings. The farm’s fields yield a variety of vegetables including heirloom tomatoes, peppers, onions, garlic, carrots and squash that are used at the Roadhouse. The rolling pastureland sustains cattle, hogs, sheep and goats.

Opened in 1992, Zingerman’s Bakehouse specializes in bread and pastries. It has an on-site bakeshop for retail sale of baked goods, and a teaching kitchen designed for home bakers of all different skill levels. Zingerman’s Mail Order sends delicious food anywhere in America, including hearth-baked breads, handmade cheeses, varietal coffee, estate-bottled olive oils and customized gift baskets.

Zingerman’s Roadhouse opened in 2003. The full-service, sit-down restaurant serves American fare including full-flavored, Southern-style barbecue, dry-aged steaks, oysters, mac & cheese and an impressive selection of small-batch bourbons. Zingerman’s Creamery is dedicated to bringing delicious hand-crafted cheese and gelato to dairy-lovers everywhere.

Zingerman’s Catering offers their services to business meetings, small parties and large events. They deliver and serve everything from corned beef to caviar, charcuterie to champagne, party platters to wedding cakes. Zingerman’s Candy Manufactory is a wholesale candy maker that creates old-fashioned American sweets by hand. Zingerman’s Coffee Co. is a wholesale roaster supplying cafes, restaurants and businesses.

ZingTrain is a consulting company specializing in training, service, merchandising, specialty foods and staff management. Through seminars and one-on-one consulting, ZingTrain shares Zingerman’s expertise with companies and individuals. “People come from all over the world to learn about our approach,” says Ari.

The most popular Zingerman business is the Deli, says Ari. “That’s the biggest draw!” he exclaimed. A customer favorite is the delicious Reuben sandwich made with Zingerman’s corned beef, Switzerland Swiss cheese, Brinery sauerkraut and Russian dressing on grilled, hand-sliced Jewish rye bread. The Deli serves thousands of tasty made-to order sandwiches and stocks an enormous variety of farmhouse cheeses, estate-bottled olive oils, varietal vinegars, smoked fish, salami, coffee, tea and much more. “We strive to provide our customers with good food, good service and an exceptional eating experience,” says Ari.

While Ari is proud of the company’s growth, his sights are set on the future. “We mostly focus on what we are going to do next and what we are going to better,” he says. “We are honored to have so many customers and so many people who work for us. It is an honor to serve people all over the world!” ♦


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