Sendy Sauce started in Eagle couple’s kitchen this summer and is now available in 33 locations
'It's been fun; it's been growing'
A hot sauce that started in an Eagle couple’s kitchen as a way to use an unused food processor given to them as a wedding gift is now available in 33 businesses, including one in Mississippi.
“I don’t know, I think it’s luck,” said Clay Vansteel, owner of Sendy Sauce along with his wife, Kali.
From liquor stores, coffee shops and breweries to restaurants, yoga studios, markets and gas stations, Sendy Sauce is available in 25 locations throughout the valley, as well as two in Leadville, four in Glenwood Springs, one in Carbondale and one in Mississippi.
Harvest Grill in Meridian, Mississippi, is run by one of Clay’s friends from the valley who moved away and started his own restaurant.
“He’s got a guy that makes bloody Mary’s with it in his bar,” he said.
Sendy Sauce has also been shipped to 45 states, just waiting for some hot sauce connections in Alaska, Nevada, Kentucky, New Hampshire and Vermont.
“There’s a lady in Puerto Rico that keeps ordering,” Clay said.
While the Vansteels both carry full-time, regular jobs in the valley, Sendy Sauce is slowly growing.
“It’s just having fun,” Clay said. “Businesses don’t have to be uptight,” adding that he and his wife haven’t taken a penny yet from the business.
The Vansteels have already worked through some uptight moments, such as the stresses of the first 25-gallon batch they made of Sendy Sauce. Then they made a 50-gallon batch,
“Now, I just scheduled a 100-gallon batch,” Clay said.
Out of a 100-gallon batch of Sendy Sauce comes over 2,500 5-ounce bottles.
“This next step, I don’t think I can put 100 gallons worth in my 4Runner,” Clay said.
The Vansteels have been busy promoting Sendy Sauce with a grassroots effort, building social media pages and going into shops to talk to potential Sendy Sauce locations.
Clay’s been spending time after his job at Bachelor Gulch delivering cases as well as expanding outside the valley. They still wrap shipments in Vail Daily newspaper and include fresh copies on bigger packages.
“One of the benefits to living in a smaller valley is that you know a lot of people,” Clay said, adding those people are usually part of a business and businesses here like to support one another.
While time is limited to focus on new flavors, Clay said he is happy with the number of locations Sendy Sauce is in and will be looking to add more flavors.
“It’s been fun,” he said. “It’s been growing.”
Sendy Sauce could have been a hot sauce for the Vansteels to enjoy themselves, or maybe along with some friends and family. It also could have been a sexy ketchup limited to establishments in this valley. But Sendy Sauce is a mountain town hot sauce, possibly coming to a location near you.
Sendy Sauce is available in …
- Boone’s Wine & Spirits
- Eagle Ranch Wine & Spirits
- Color Coffee Roasters
- Stout House Coffee Kitchen
- Bonfire Brewing
- Eagle Visitor Center
- Red Canyon Cafe
- Sweet Water Liquors
- Boneyard in Eagle Ranch
- Ace Hardware
- Village Bagel
- Village Market
- Riverwalk Wine & Spirits
- Stop n Save Conoco
- Dogma Athletica
- Colorado Meat Company
- Avon Liquors
- Beaver Liquors
- Joe’s Liquors
- Pier 13 Liquors
- Lionshead Liquors
- Vail Fine Wines
- The Market at Vail
- West Vail Liquors
- Mt Massive Liquors
- Stop N Save Conoco
- Rocky Mountain Pizza CO
- Blue Bird Cafe
- Turtle’s Liquors
- Rhino Liquors
- Sopris Liquor & Wine
- Harvest Grill