About Upper Lakes Foods

Customer Testimonials

We’re celebrating over 50 years in business, and your success fuels everything we do. Tell us your story.

  1. Steve Anderson, ULF Customer since Sometime in the 90's, says:

    We’ve been in business for 35 years on the same corner in Frederic, Wisconsin. For a good share of those years Upper Lakes Foods has been our primary supplier. Thank you Upper Lakes for your great service! We have many fond memories of all the staff at ULF. Congratulations on the first 50 years and looking forward to many more years!
    “Bean” & Vonnie Anderson – BEAN’S COUNTRY GRIDDLE

    Posted on: January 19, 2017

  2. Kris Neff, ULF Customer since 1988, says:

    I have worked with ULF for over 25 years and they are beyond compare to other vendors. Their approach to providing quality product, exceptional service, and competitive pricing has been 5 star to me. They have continued to demonstrate loyalty to our organizational needs and will assist with all aspects of culinary menu creation and customer experience. They are, and will always be, my first choice in a culinary vendor partnership.

    Posted on: January 20, 2017

  3. Rita and Steve Rasmuson - The WaterShed Cafe, ULF Customer since 2015, says:

    Thank you so much for being a consciously aware provider of local and sustainable foods. Through your thoughtful purchasing and sourcing, you have made it possible for us to source our small restaurant with the ingredients that are the flavors of The Watershed Café. Congratulations on your 50th year!

    Posted on: January 23, 2017

  4. Merle Sampson, ULF Customer since 1982, says:

    We have worked with Jean and the rest of the ULF staff since the 1980’s. ULF provides us excellent choice, service, value, and has always been very willing to go the extra mile whether helping open a new housing community, staff nutritional training, or guidance in menu and recipe planning. Good luck in your next 50 years!

    Posted on: January 31, 2017

  5. David Bottem says:

    Thanks to Ron S. , Lynn C. and the entire ULF Team for their support and guidance. Thanks to the ULF Team, Barnum Schools are serving high quality healthy meals to our students, and at a great value! Congratulations on 50 years!

    Posted on: February 13, 2017

  6. Cheryl Plante, ULF Customer since 1996, says:

    Congratulations to Upper Lakes Foods for fifty years of providing fantastic products and the best customer service around! As a Certified Dietary Manager, Upper Lakes Foods has helped me in many ways. They assisted me in the successful startup of a new kitchen and food service and continued to work with me for 18 years. Recently, I started working in a new position and I was thrilled to find out that Upper Lakes Foods was already the primary vendor there. It has been a smooth transition for me because they take such great care of their customers and they never let you down. Their corporate chef helps find creative menu ideas and assists with the preparations for special events. The non-commissioned salesperson keep us informed about the latest industry trends, new products and opportunity buys. We never have any issues with credits and the quality of the products are always top notch! Upper Lakes Foods cares about the success of their customers and it shows!

    Posted on: February 13, 2017

  7. Dean Korach, ULF Customer since 09/01/1997, says:

    I have been doing business with ULF for 20 years now. Their dedication to the food industry and customer first attitude has actually made me feel like I am part of a team with them. From my sales person, inside sales person, management, right on up to my delivery guy, the service/care is parallel to none, extraordinary is all I can say! I was fortunate to have started purchasing when Larry Sorenson was at the helm, his influence of making a difference in those his company served, was obvious to me the moment I placed my first order back in 1997. In my mind, ULF set the bar as role models in the food industry of this region and their employees are the foundation of that example… My only regret at this stage of life is that I never went to work for them and became part of the ULF family legacy… The best to each and everyone of you as you celebrate this milestone of success!!!
    Dean Korach
    Dir. of Food Service
    Marshall School

    Posted on: February 14, 2017

  8. Chelly Townsend, ULF Customer since 1967 (we weren't here then but we're pretty sure. , says:

    The DECC celebrated 50 years of business this year too! Upper Lakes has been with us all along. We’ve come a long way in 50 years and Upper Lakes Foods has grown with us. You’ve trained us, guided us and helped us through some jams and we’re so grateful. We look forward to many more years with you.
    Thanks Lynn and the gang!
    Your Concession and Catering friends from the DECC

    Posted on: February 14, 2017

  9. Rendezvous Sports Bar & Grill, ULF Customer since 2014, says:

    We love Upper Lakes Foods. Our sales rep Lynn C. goes all out to have us try new items and enhance what we currently have. She is not just our salesperson, she is an adviser and a member of our FAMILY! Speaking of family, it is Upper Lakes Foods. We have had deliveries by owners, managers, actually most of Upper Lakes Foods staff have dropped off some product! ULF is one BIG family! Also local works BEST for us!

    Posted on: February 20, 2017

  10. Greg and Vicki Gamst, ULF Customer since 1975, says:

    We wish our most sincere Congratulations to the Sorensen family on 50 years of the most dedicated service and friendship!

    We can truly attribute the success of our business to all of you at Upper Lakes Foods. We were very fortunate to have had such a great company right out our front door. The service was always impeccable and the bond between us was more than imaginable.

    I will try to keep this “short and sweet.” Our business and personal relationship with ULF began in 1975 at the Red Oak Inn and continued with us at Gampers until 2013.
    We were so very blessed with weekly visits from “The Queen” Lynn Christman! Not only was she a great sales lady, she became our best friend and mentor. I’d love to tell some stories, but if I do this will never end. Thank you so much for everything, dear Lynn!

    Lest we forget anyone in this operation, we will just say “Thank You” to all of you who work so hard to make your customers feel so important.

    Thank you Pat Sorensen and family. You just have to know that Larry is so proud of all of you!

    Congratulations and love you all!
    The Gamst Family

    Posted on: February 23, 2017

  11. Kathy Mathis Trailways Inn, ULF Customer since 1981, says:

    Congratulations Upper Lakes Foods on 50 years! I remember sitting at a table with ULF salesman, Zino Tully, making my first order. And 36 years later, we are still going strong! Thank you for 36 years of great food, great employees, and great service!

    Posted on: February 28, 2017

  12. Joe and Dee Dee Jirovec, ULF Customer since 2013, says:

    We bought Gamper’s in November of 2013. I met our rep, Lynn Christman, about a month beforehand. From that day forward, Lynn, along with the rest of the ULF staff, has treated my family like royalty. Their customer service is second to none! They will do anything, at anytime, to help resolve any issue that may arise. ULF is our ONLY food supplier. They have never given us a reason to look anywhere else. Congratulations on 50 years!! Here’s to many more!!!

    Posted on: March 3, 2017

  13. Dan Dixon, ULF Customer since Mid 1980's, says:

    Guardian Angels of Elk River is proud to have a working relationship with all of the fine staff at Upper Lakes Foods. They have always served us with the very best food and products, but more important than that is their individual attention to details. Lead with a team of high quality people, Scott Sorensen, Jean Mattson, and Jim Bradshaw will get the job done no matter what is asked of them. We celebrate 50 years with you and we look forward to the next 50!

    Posted on: March 6, 2017

  14. Al & PeggyVilla, ULF Customer since 1995, says:

    We love Upper Lakes Foods at Peggy Sue’s Cafe. They are a big part of the reason we are still here 21 years later. We love the great quality in all your products. The drivers are always courteous. We especially love Lynn C. for all the help and ideas through the years.

    Congratulations on 50 years! You’re the best!

    Posted on: March 16, 2017

  15. Jamie Wilson, ULF Customer since 2000, says:

    Thank you Upper Lakes Foods for supporting every facet of food service. So thankful that I have been able to count on your top notch service through thick and thin. Building relationships and pushing each other to learn more and be better, that is what it is all about. Wishing you 50 more great years!

    Posted on: March 22, 2017

  16. Shaun Hammel - The Rosemount says:

    Brian and Upper Lakes Foods know how to take away the tedious work that takes up a lot of time for a chef. I am always starved for time. My partnership with ULF has supplied me with menu costing and menu ideas, great product suggestions and product selection as well as their attentiveness and honesty. My partnership with ULF is invaluable.

    Posted on: March 27, 2017

  17. Maria Field says:

    Congratulations to Upper Lakes Foods on the “50th” Anniversary of being in business, and from Heritage of Edina, a client for 22 years.

    Heritage of Edina was started by Wayne Field in 1960 and within 13 years he had 23 nursing homes around the United States plus the 4 buildings in Edina which are now 3 Assisted Livings and 1 for Autistic Young Adults called Erik’s Retreat.

    By 1990 Wayne had sold everything except the Edina complex because the deal just didn’t work out. We then took charge of running the complex and a young salesman from Upper Lakes Foods began to stop by often, to entice us to do business with him. I forgot who our vendor was then, but we certainly did not have a good personal relationship with them. So after listening to this young man for many months, Wayne Field, being the Founder, President, and CEO of Heritage of Edina gave the persistent young salesman a challenge to take back to Larry Sorensen, the Founder, President, and CEO of Upper Lakes Foods. Wayne asked that Larry come to Edina and meet us for lunch so they could talk and make a deal between them, face to face.

    Larry agreed and after having a great visit and discussion over lunch, they made a deal and sealed it with a handshake, verifying their approval and trust of each other. Witnesses to this was Jim Bradshaw, John Blahnik, (the persistent young salesman), and I, Maria Field, wife of Wayne, and in charge of paying all the bills.
    Wayne and I started coming to the Food Shows at Cloquet every year and would always get to visit with Larry, Jim, and John. The 5 of us would meet for lunch at least once a year until we lost Larry in 2006.

    Wayne became ill and then died in 2009. We miss them both so very much, but life goes on and now the 3 of us still have lunch or dinner once a year, Jim, John, and I.
    The fact that I have been running Heritage of Edina by myself, (plus my wonderful staff), I appreciate and am forever thankful for Jim and John and all the staff at Upper Lakes Foods for all the help and advice they have given us. John stops by every week to bring new recipes, introduce new food items and give good suggestions to the Director of Dietary, Preetha, who has been here for 20 years.

    We hope our business association will continue for many years in the future.

    Posted on: March 27, 2017

  18. Jane Pantzke - ElderCare of Minnesota says:

    Upper Lakes Foods tours bring smiles and conversations to the elderly with snack and dessert presentations of enhanced culinary food. The team is a cheerful and they provide an uplifting, unique blend of culinary history, culture and, perhaps most important, food for a true taste of life. When we think of Upper Lakes Foods, the famed heart and soul of food culture embarks. The ability to customize menu items specifically to satisfy your customers are regionally, nationally and globally inspired. Truly enjoy working with the Upper Lakes Foods Team.

    Posted on: March 29, 2017

  19. Randy Hickle - Tobies Restaurant says:

    We’ve been around a long time, much longer than family businesses are supposed to last. My father and mother in law, John and Esther Schrade, took over Tobies Restaurant in 1966 and moved it to its current location along I-35 in Hinckley, MN.

    Larry was a colorful operator. I knew him very well. One time he dumped a whole briefcase full of cash onto a table to get our attention. He was trying to make an impression on us. Why all the cash? I don’t know, but that was Larry. Then he scooped it all up and left.

    Lee Nordin and Ron Strasburg worked with us too, such great salesman. They could sell ice to Eskimos. And LaVonne, what a saleslady she was. Her voice alone was honest and trustworthy like listening to Joyce Lamont on WCCO Radio.

    Recently, Paul Ochs has taken good care of all our needs with quality and great pricing. Our restaurant has been working with Upper Lakes Foods for almost 50 years.

    Scott Sorensen and family have always been our friends and business partners. We have enjoyed our business relationship these past years and are looking forward to another 50 years.

    Posted on: March 29, 2017

  20. Priscilla Blom, CDM,CFPP, ULF Customer since 1987, says:

    Aicota Health Care Center has been with Upper Lakes Foods for over 30 years, We joined them as one of their first Prelude accounts and we have been satisfied ever since.They have always been ready to assist us in any situation from helping at a picnic , inservicing our staff or hand delivering a forgotten product. We have always relied on their fair pricing, quality products and customer service. Here at Aicota Health Care Center – Upper Lakes Foods is top notch!!!

    Posted on: April 27, 2017

  21. Barb Griffiths says:

    Upper Lakes Foods has been ISD 196 (Rosemount, Apple Valley, Eagan) Food Services’ prime vendor for over a decade. They have always served our district high quality, cost effective food with timely communication. They maintain strong food safety standards and are very responsive to our ever changing school food service needs. We appreciate the partnership between ISD 196 Food Services and Upper Lake Foods. Congratulations on your 50th Anniversary!

    Posted on: September 27, 2017