Eli's Cheesecake

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Eli's Cheesecake
Type Private
Industry Food production
Founded 1980
Founders Eli Schulman
Headquarters Chicago, Illinois, USA
Products Cheesecake
Owners Marc Schulman, President
Employees 51-200
Website www.elischeesecake.com

Eli's Cheesecake is a cheesecake company based in Chicago. Eli's Original Plain Cheesecake, which has been called "Chicago's most famous dessert", is made of cream cheese, sour cream, eggs, sugar, and vanilla in a butter shortbread cookie crust. Since the introduction of Eli's Original Plain Cheesecake, the company now offers cheesecakes with various ingredients such as chocolate, fruit, or caramel, as well as other desserts like tarts, cakes, and tiramisu.[1][2][3]

History[edit]

Eli Schulman was born in 1910 on the West Side of Chicago.[4] In 1940, he started his first venture in the restaurant business with a popular coffee shop called Eli's Ogden Huddle.[5] He followed Eli's Odgen Huddle with Eli's Stage Delicatessen, where several notable performers dined.[5]

Eli's The Place For Steak[edit]

In 1966, Eli's The Place for Steak was opened and the celebrities followed.[5] Celebrities such as Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Gayle Sayers, and Henry Youngman all spent time dining at Eli's The Place for Steak.[6] During the late 1970s, Eli Schulman developed the original plain cheesecake as the signature dessert for Eli's The Place for Steak. The cheesecake represented the restaurant at the first Taste of Chicago in 1980, and it eventually became the festival's most popular dessert, with about 2 million slices sold as of 2005.[7] After being open for 39 years, Eli's The Place for Steak closed in 2005.[1][8]

Company president, Marc Schulman

Eli's Cheesecake Company[edit]

Eli's Cheesecake Company became its own company soon after the first Taste of Chicago in 1980 with a small North Side plant.[8] In 1996, Eli's Cheesecake Company moved to its current location in Chicago's Dunning neighborhood.[1][8] The new location, called Eli's Cheesecake World, includes a 62,000-square-foot (5,800 m2) state-of-the-art bakery, bakery cafe, and corporate offices.[1][8] Eli's Cheesecake products get shipped to customers all over the U.S. and to stores internationally.[9] Eli's is also available via a cooperation with Portillo's Restaurants and Lou Malnati's through Lou Malnati's Tastes of Chicago, which provides Chicago-style cuisine nationally.

Eli Schulman's son, Marc Schulman, became president of Eli's Cheesecake in 1984 and has been running the company since his father's death on May 8, 1988.[4] Later in 1988, a playground across from the street from Eli's the Place for Steak was dedicated in Eli's memory and named the "Eli M. Schulman Playground".[10]

Accomplishments[edit]

Eli's has made cheesecakes for four American presidential inaugurations. In both 1993 and 1997, it made 2,000 pound cheesecakes for Bill Clinton's inauguration ceremonies.[11][12] In January 2009, Eli's produced a 500-pound cheesecake for Barack Obama's inaugural ball, and in January 2013, the company made a 500-pound cheesecake for Obama's Inaugural Staff Ball.[13][14][15]

Desperate Housewives’ Jamie Denton and the Band From TV celebrate Eli’s 30th birthday at the Taste of Chicago.

Eli's Cheesecake made a 2,000-pound cheesecake to commemorate the Burnham Plan Centennial on June 27, 2009, as well as the twenty-ninth anniversary of the Taste of Chicago and Eli's Cheesecake.[16] Eli's has also made cheesecakes over the years for events such as Hillary Clinton's 50th birthday, Disney World's 25th birthday, Abraham Lincoln's Birthday Bicentennial Banquet (which President Barack Obama attended), Chicago's 150th birthday and Illinois' Governor Pat Quinn's inauguration in 2011.[17][18][19][20] Eli's Cheesecake continues to be favorite at the Taste of Chicago.[3]

Eli's has also been featured on some popular television shows, such as The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Oprah Winfrey Show.[20] In May 2012, Eli's Cheesecake was featured on ABC World News with Diane Sawyer in a special called "Made in America".[9]

Community[edit]

Eli’s has been very active in Chicago, and especially the Dunning neighborhood. Eli’s partners with schools and organizations such as Wilbur Wright College, the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences (CHSAS), Vaughn Occupational High School, the New Horizon Center for Developmentally Disabled, the Greater Chicago Food Depository, and the Illinois Department of Human Services.[21] Eli’s has a Farmers Market on Thursdays during the summer and into the fall with Wilbur Wright College.[21] Eli’s supports CHSAS students by buying their wildflower honey and using it in its cheesecakes, as well as providing job-shadowing opportunities.[21] The Greater Chicago Food Depository and Eli’s partner up for special food drive events like the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival and Sharing It Day, as well as food donations throughout the year.[21] Eli’s was honored by the Department of Human Services with the Spotlight Award, which recognizes companies who advocate for people with disabilities.[22]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Pam Henderson and Jan Mathew. You Know You're in Illinois When.... Globe Pequot, 2006. 30.
  2. ^ Eli's Cheesecake - Fruit Cheesecakes and Desserts
  3. ^ a b Taste of Chicago 2012: Finalizes Restaurant Line-up for 32nd Annual Taste. | Show Me Chicago
  4. ^ a b Larry Weintraub. "Eli Schulman dies at 78 - Chicago's cheesecake king". Chicago Sun-Times. May 8, 1988. 3.
  5. ^ a b c Eli's Cheesecake - About Eli's
  6. ^ Eli's Cheesecake - About Eli's
  7. ^ Robin Mather Jenkins. "10 Chicago icons". Chicago Tribune. October 12, 2005. D.
  8. ^ a b c d Arnold Collins. "Let them eat Cheesecake, Dunning". Chicago Sun-Times. September 7, 2007. S1.
  9. ^ a b 'It's My Favorite': U.S. Exports, Businesses Score Mideast Fan Base - ABC News
  10. ^ Eli's Cheesecake - About Eli's
  11. ^ Basil Talbott and Jerome R. Watson. "Capital Letters". Chicago Sun-Times. January 18, 1993. 8.
  12. ^ Basil Talbott. "Eli's makes name for itself on Mall". Chicago Sun-Times. January 20, 1997. 4.
  13. ^ Bill Zwecker. "At ball, a taste of Chicago". Chicago Sun-Times. January 13, 2009. 20.
  14. ^ Mary Lu Carnevale. "Inauguration Watch: One Giant Cheesecake, Coming Up". Wall Street Journal. January 13, 2009. Retrieved on December 8, 2011.
  15. ^ http://obamafoodorama.blogspot.com/2013/01/500-pound-elis-cheesecake-is-signed.html
  16. ^ "Make No Little Cakes". The Burnham Plan Centennial. Retrieved on September 18, 2009.
  17. ^ Chicago, Eli's And The Dot-com - Page 2 - Chicago Tribune
  18. ^ Obama Foodorama: President Obama's Favorite Cheesecake Recipe From The Lincoln Birthday Bicentennial Banquet
  19. ^ Hail to the Cheese « Eli's Cheesecake
  20. ^ a b Eli's Cheesecake - Food Service Extranet - Why Choose Eli's
  21. ^ a b c d Eli's Cheesecake - Community
  22. ^ Eli's Cheesecake - About Eli's - Illinois recognizes Eli's Cheesecake and other companies who empower people with disabilities through employment! October 27, 2004

External links[edit]