There’s a broil of creativity in the air when you walk through a London market. You can almost taste it. The passion for good food and the zeal in traders’ eyes as they tell you about their dish is infectious, and there’s one sustained theme that burns brightly across the board: Spicy!
London has long had a taste for spicy food attributable to a rich cultural history and open-minded population. This combined with individuals’ ever-empowered ability to create and share sees a growing community of ‘cottage industry’ and start-ups in food and drink that promises innovation, diversity and quality.
Where our choices were once blinkered into what was available on the supermarket shelves or the four or five beers the brewery supplied to our local, we are now seeing our options expand exponentially; Micro breweries pump delicious blends of unique, fresh beer into our glasses, coffee is bespoke ground and delivered to our door fresh, full ingredients and recipes delivered into our kitchens to cook at home. Life is being made easier and more enjoyable by a more sociable culinary marketplace.
Unlike ketchup, hot sauce is a talking point. Aside from diversity of brand and flavour its heat stimulates conversation about preference and inspires playful competition! With sales growing year on year, amounting to £18m last year in the UK alone, it only makes sense to echo this diversity of choice on people’s dinner tables. The average hot sauce user is broadly aware of cupboard staples such as Tabasco, Heinz and Encona – they’re great sauces and easily available, but why settle for Echo Falls when you can have Don Perignon? Why not try something new every month from a plethora of the innovative micro-manufacturers popping up all over the country?
I want to see happen with hot sauce what’s happened with craft beer. To champion the small manufacturers of these gastro masterpieces and diversify the nation’s palates. To leave behind the monotony of opening cupboard doors to the same bottle every week. And to see hot sauce take it’s place on the map of our culinary revolution.
If this strikes a chord with you follow the link below to my Kickstarter and find out what I’m doing about it.
Dave Rotheroe is originally from Liverpool but now lives in London. He’s chosen to escape his career in IT to pursue various food ventures in and around London.
(Ok, ya’ll. I love a good subscription service (Spicery, Pact Coffee, I’m looking at you) and I LOVE hot sauce. Let’s get this thing off the ground, eh? I need to spice up my cupboard a bit and Lick My Dip is totally up for the challenge.)
If you’re interested in getting in touch or writing a guest post for The London Diaries, tweet me at @stephanie_khani or email me at emailthelondondiaries [at] gmail.com! I love getting emails and am always open to new ideas and post pitches.