Ali sat down with our Operations Manager Nathan to discuss kitchen experimentation and innovation at Sauce Shop. He and co-founder James are always coming up with different ideas on how to squeeze the most flavour out of the ingredients that go into our sauces, so here's a bit from behind-the-scenes.
What sort of processes are you using currently?
A lot of work goes into developing our recipes, using real food you know what to expect in a lot of ways, so it's about finding the balance of everything else that goes in to really bring those great ingredients to life. Fermentation's a big thing for us in that sense. It's an age-old process that was used for preserving food, but it's become so popular for various reasons, like the incredible flavours it brings out in the simplest ingredients, but also for its health benefits.
You can read more about our fermentation process here.
What's the inspiration behind those kind of ideas and processes?
James and I are really interested in the science of food and flavours. He did a Food Science degree and I did Genetics, so we like to delve pretty deep into how we can alter the way things taste with more than just great recipes. We're also keen home-brewers in our spare time and a lot of the processes go hand-in-hand, especially when it comes to fermentation.
We're loving drawing these links to brewing and seeing more evidence of that with the flavours being released at the moment. Is there more to explore there?
Definitely. We've drawn a lot of inspiration from some of our favourite breweries, and the craft beer scene as a whole. It was so exciting to be using Neon Raptor's beer for Endangered BBQ Sauce and heading over to the taproom with it straight off the line. We're also working on some really interesting stuff using beer in different ways. Keep an eye out for more of this kind of thing, we've got big plans.
Why do you think it's so important to be experimenting like this?
We want to make the best tasting sauces available. It's exciting for us to discover ways to make something taste even better and important that we keep adapting and improving. Seeing people enjoy what we're doing and creating a buzz about new flavours we release is the best feeling. Brands should be fun to be a part of and we have such a great community of fans. A lot of food brands are pretty static, we don't see why people can't get as excited about sauce as they do about something like beer.
The white label range is the testing ground for the slightly more out there ideas you guys come up with. What's on the cards for that?
Top secret of course! But we're planning to get these releases out even more regularly. There's so many ideas flying around and we can get them turned around surprisingly quickly. That's the benefit of a small operation and no need for it to go through various teams to be signed off! Expect to see more collaborations, super-limited runs and definitely a lot of unique sauces you won't find anywhere else.