Five Loaves Catering, 710 Coliseum Drive, has opened a retail shop that sells fresh entrees, sandwiches, sides and desserts.
Five Loaves, a successful caterer for more than 20 years in Winston-Salem, is owned by Marlene Littell.
For about 10 years, Five Loaves has sold a limited amount of frozen soups, casseroles and other grab-and-go items. “It was almost this underground thing where people who knew would come in the side door and get something,” said executive chef Leigh Hesling.
“I’ve always been amazed how popular the frozen food was,” Littell said. “Just today one woman came in and bought 10 quarts of soup.”
The two freezers are still there, offering such items as quarts of chicken tortilla soup ($12), beef chili ($14) and marinara sauce ($10), packages of salmon cakes ($15 for three), and pans of baked spaghetti ($18/large) and chicken and artichoke casserole ($18/large).
But Five Loaves has added a series of refrigerated cases that offer a large selection of fresh prepared food. Entrees include large bone-in pork chops ($12) and marinated grilled citrus salmon ($8). People can buy alfredo sauce ($8) by the pound, as well as cooked pasta ($4/pound) to go with it. There are turkey, ham and bacon club sandwiches ($10) and roast beef and horseradish on a pretzel roll ($11).
Sides sold by the pound include pimento cheese ($18), Caesar salad ($14) and green beans with browned shallot butter ($12). “People can come in and put a whole dinner together,” Hesling said.
Among the desserts are individual servings of cream-cheese brownies ($1.50), lemon chess tarts ($5) and New York cheesecake ($5).
Littell had tried retail fresh foods once before but stopped because it was hard to manage with all her catering jobs. Now, she said, she feels that her staffing situation is better. Hesling, the executive chef of Green Valley Grill and Printworks Bistro in Greensboro for about 15 years, came on board in April. A new pastry chef is due to arrive later this month. Those two, along with longtime kitchen manager Mike Kimball, put Five Loaves in a good position to offer more, Littell said.
“Customers have been begging me to do this for years,” she said. “It seems like someone asks me about it every day.”
The shop is mainly designed for takeout. But it does have a few tables inside and out. And people can order coffee, sodas, beer and wine in addition to food.
“People can get a coffee and a pastry and sit down if they’d like,” Hesling said. “And the shop probably will evolve as we see what customers want.”