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Sea Isle Guys Grow Up and Make Hot Sauce

Hank SaucesIt’s not often that anyone from Sea Isle City grows up and tries to make something of him or her self.

OK, that’s a joke.

Hank Sauce is no joke, though. It was an idea concocted by two young South Jersey lads that has flourished into a seasonal restaurant and a hot sauce company. The sauces are available locally and online.

According to their website, the idea for Hank Sauce was born in a local Cape May County school cafeteria:

Hank Sauce started as an idea between two childhood friends who share a love for the ocean as well as a “do it yourself” attitude.  Brian (Hank) and Matt first met on a balmy October day in the dining establishment of the Dennis Twp. Elementary School system.  Maybe it was the cafeteria air, but something prompted Matt to call Brian a $#&@!*. Although completely capable at 5’1” 120lbs (in 5th grade) Brian refrained from killing Matt, which would have ended all Hank Sauce possibilities.  The two awkwardly rode the bus to band practice after school where they discussed various topics such as music, surfing, and fishing; realizing they shared much in common.  It was also around this time that Hank started working in the restaurant scene and developing a serious interest in food. From here he sharpened his skills and made the original version of Hank Sauce as a flavor enhancer for personal meals.

Longing for a break from the harsh New Jersey winters both Matt and Hank decided it was time to relocate after 18 years.   They set their sights on Flagler College in the beautiful and historic town of St. Augustine, Florida. Rave reviews from roommates and friends confirmed that Hank’s cooking was legit, and “the sauce” was something special.  Matt saw an opportunity for a graphic design project and asked hank about bottling up some sauce to make labels and a logo for his portfolio.  From there the sauce became extremely popular amongst friends and they realized it had potential.  They brought on longtime friend and roommate Josh and the crew moved back to New Jersey to build the brand.  After hustling farmers markets and expo shows they opened the first “Hank Sauce Spot” in March of 2012.

I tried, and bought some Hank Sauce the other day at the Tackle Direct Store on Tilton Road in Egg Harbor Township. I love the cilantro-infused sauce, Clianktro. Other available flavors include Camouflage, Herb-Infused, and Hank’s Heat. While it certainly isn’t the hottest sauce I’ve ever tried – it may have been the tastiest!

Good luck, Hank! (and, the other guys….)

 

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