“Do you guys actually have a Cafe?”
This is a question we get asked all the time. Although not a reality yet, the idea is for opening a cafe one day, with most everything on the menu spice based – spice for flavor not necessarily for heat. The line of gourmet hot sauces is the 1st step in that direction.
As a two-man start-up, spreading the hot sauce love, the first customer was Stroh’s Gourmet Deli on Abbot Kinney in Venice, CA in 2006. Adding two more flavors, Chipotle Garlic and Caribbean Spice, word started to spread about the sauces and the business got off to a great start.
With roots going back a few decades to the advent of the Buffalo Chicken Wing, All Spice Cafe gourmet hot sauces got started because many people who tasted the wing sauce made by founder JD Cowles kept saying that he should bottle and sell his sauce. After years of home cooking and lots of family & friends continually telling him to bottle the sauce, All Spice Cafe got its start in 2006 when JD thought he would finally test out the market and produce some bottles of his greatly loved sauce.
In the fall of 2006, three sauces were entered in the 2007 Scovie Awards as part of the Fiery Food and Barbecue Show in Albuquerque, NM. In early November the news came – the Cayenne Habanero took 3rd place for Habanero sauces and the Caribbean Spice took 1st place for Caribbean style sauces! September of 2007, the Chipotle Garlic was awarded a 3rd place Fiery Food Challenge Award at the Zest Fest in Fort Worth, TX and later in the year the Caribbean Spice was awarded a 1st place Award at the Hot Sauce Awards in Manhattan, NY! 2008 was a great year for All Spice Cafe – Los Angeles magazine’s annual Best of LA issue named JD “Best Hot Sauce Maker,” 3 Golden Chile Awards at the 2009 Zest Fest and 7 Scovie awards at the 2009 Fiery Food and Barbecue Show. The first Whole Foods stores, as well as gourmet shops and restaurants in Southern CA starting to carry the sauces. An online store was also started in 2008 for those people who didn’t have access to the products in their areas.
The business continues to grow, adding Whole Foods stores in AZ, HI, and NV as well as more gourmet shops and eateries. 2010 also brought 6 new products to the brand, Sweet Habanero and Sweet Ghost Pepper Popcorns, two new spice rubs, Ghost Pepper Adobo and Ghost Pepper Jerk, a Ghost Pepper Sauce, and Ghost Pepper Grinder. The Bhut Jolokia pepper from India is the hottest pepper in the world, referred to in the West as the Ghost Pepper, offers extreme heat without adding Oleoresin Capsicum (pepper extract).
Stay tuned to allspicecafe.com as new products keep being developed and expansion into new markets continues.