For Pete’s Sake—Another vomFASS in Florida

Shaking off the arctic winters of Cleveland, Ohio, Jeff Ritter and Joe Pedro are now basking on the intercoastals of Indian Rock Beach, Florida. With 365 days of sunshine a year, Jeff and Joe are sunning and boating and planning the opening of their shop in Florida.


Jeff Ritter and Joe Pedro, vomFASS St. Petersburg


Toni Jakovec:  So, how did you two find out about vomFASS?


Joe Pedro:  Jeff (Ritter) began working with a head-hunter that did a search of franchise opportunities for us and that’s how be found out about vomFASS.


TJ:  You had never visited a vomFASS prior to investigating it as an investment?


JP: No we hadn’t.  Then after we discovered vomFASS we visited the Sarasota store, owned by Robert and Debbie Kay.  We really liked their stores and thought all of the products were terrific.  Of course, we bought a ton of products.  We bought wine, olive oils and vinegars and sampled everything. We brought it all home and loved everything.  So after that trip we decided to look into what it took to open up a franchise.


TJ:  Have you found a location for your shop yet?


JP:  We have a letter of intent that will be signed off within the next few days.  We’ve been negotiating back and forth with the landlord working out all of the details, which are now being finalized.  Our shop will be located in downtown St. Petersburg.


TJ:  What will that address be?


JP:  The address is 300 Beach Drive, St. Petersburg, Florida.


TJ:  When the leasing papers are finally signed, how long will it be before you can open your store?


JP: Of course, it all depends on how soon the architect can sign off on the design elements and when we can get our equipment and installation from vomFASS.   But, if all goes according to plan, we’re projecting between 3 and 4 months.


TJ:  Did you investigate any other franchises?


JP:  No, not really.  We use vomFASS type products all the time.  We do a lot of cooking and love fine wines.  Jeff likes different kinds of Scotches and whiskeys.  When we found out vomFASS carries all of these products, we thought, “Wow, this would be a great place to work.”


TJ:  Yes, it’s a nice way to spend your day.


JP:  Exactly.


TJ:  Would you and Jeff call yourselves foodies?


JP:  Oh yes, definitely.  We love to cook, we love to bake, although Jeff is more of the baker.  We try many different restaurants, so we’re foodies all right.


TJ:  Have you two found a favorite vomFASS product yet?


JP:  I really love the Maletti.  I think that is delicious.  We use the Pepper Vodka to make Bloody Mary’s.  Jeff loves the vomFASS Grape with Ginger Lemon Vinegar and the Oregano Extra Virgin Olive Oil.  We use so many products including the Garlic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, but honestly, we love everything we’ve tried.


TJ:  Tell me Joe, what background do both of you bring to vomFASS:


JP:  I have a Bachelor of Arts in Communications.  I was a branch bank manager for three different banks.  We owned quite a bit of property in Cleveland, so I became a property manager/landlord.  Also, I was a realtor for 11 years, 7 of those with Howard Hanna.


TJ:  What about Jeff?


JP:  Jeff has a Bachelor of Science in Accountancy, plus an MBA.  He is currently the Executive Vice President of Finance for a software company.


TJ:  Did you both grow up in Cleveland?


JP:  I did, well in a Cleveland suburb and Jeff grew up in Newark, Ohio which is in the Columbus area.


TJ:  Who does most of the cooking?


JP: Actually we both like to cook.  I’m Italian/Irish so I do a lot of Italian cooking.  But I pretty much cook everything.  Jeff, on the other hand, is a great baker.  He does all kinds of different desserts.


TJ:  I didn’t know you were Italian.  When I saw your name I assumed you were Spanish.


JP:  It’s a funny story.  My grandfather’s actual birth certificate shows his last name as DiPietro.  But when he went through Ellis Island his name was changed and shortened to Pedro.


TJ:  Who is going to run the store?


JP:  We will both be running the store full time once Jeff gets out of the corporate world.  We’re also lucky to have my sister down here, and she will become the store manager.


TJ:  Sounds like a great plan and I wish you nothing but great success.


JP:  Thank you.


Disclaimer: This information is not intended as an offer to sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy, a franchise. It is for information purposes only. Currently, the following states in the United States regulate the offer and sale of franchises: California, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin. If you are a resident of one of these states, we will not offer you a franchise unless and until we have complied with applicable pre-sale registration and disclosure requirements in your jurisdiction.