When Steve Rapillo ’82 P11 first started helping out with the family business at 10 years old, it was out of a desire to spend more time with his dad, who was hard at work six days a week. At that time, Tufo’s Wholesale Foods, Inc. in the Bronx, New York, went door to door, offering home food delivery. Today, Rapillo is president of the business, which has grown to become a national distributor of over 3,000 food and beverage products.
Rapillo says it is “work ethic, personality and honesty,” that have helped him build the family business over the years, which started in 1929 as a home egg delivery service, by horse-drawn carriage. Today, Rapillo loves working with their chef customers. “I help them plan their menus, especially what cheese goes with what menu dish,” he says.
The 25,000-square-foot Tufo facility stocks dairy products, bagels, condiments, juices, dressings, spices, coffee, tea, frozen foods and paper goods, before the trucks head out to deliver the items to customers at restaurants and stores across the country. He stocks both national brands and his own family Tufo brand. And if Rapillo could add one Kimball favorite to this inventory? “The chocolate chip cookies!” ■
—Maura Sullivan Hill
Photo: Steve Rapillo ’82 P11 and his wife, Jeanne-Marie DeSalvia Rapillo ’82 P11, who spearheads the gourmet gift basket side of their family business.