Getting sauced: The finishing touch for good barbecue
Good barbecue takes time. Making the perfect rack of ribs, brisket or turkey leg requires the right amount of smoke, heat and seasoning. To top it off, the right barbecue sauce adds the perfect finishing touch (except in the case of dry rub barbecue). Many companies use pre-bottled barbecue sauce on their products. For others, making their own takes a little more time, effort and expense, but the results are worth it.
Golden West Food Group, a Vernon, Calif.-based processor with a number of brands, has been producing the Jack Daniels line of fully cooked barbecued meats for the last 15 years. Last fall, the company became the licensee to manufacture a line of Jack Daniels barbecue sauces, too.
Tony Cimolino, chief marketing officer, said that the company will roll out a line of premium sauces this summer.
“It uses only high-quality ingredients, so there are no preservatives. There is no high fructose corn syrup, there’s no corn syrup, and the product is also gluten free. And, inside is a little bit of Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey,” he says. “These are kettle cooked in small batches, they’re done in Fullerton, Calif., and we distribute nationwide.”
Golden West will introduce the line with an original, a Sweet & Spicy and a Honey BBQ sauce. The bottles are designed to stand out with a premium look. They are glass, not plastic, and they hold 19.5 ounces of sauce, which is more than the industry average of 18 ounces.
As an added benefit to producing the Jack Daniels sauces, Golden West is able to incorporate the sauces into its barbecue meats line. It’s utilized the liquor company’s extensive product line to produce new products.
“About three years ago we launched Tennessee Honey, which is a line of pulled pork and pulled chicken using the Tennessee Honey liqueur, which is one of the bottled flavored variants from Jack Daniels,” Cimolino says.
The trick of any type of widely distributed barbecue products or sauce is to come up with something that pleases a majority of the consumers.
“The barbecue traditions are so rich in the United States,” he adds, noting the regional variants across the country. Kansas City has a tomato-based sauce, while Texas may feature a spice rub and no sauce at all. Jack Daniels is a Tennessee company, so Golden West’s sauces are more closely related to the sweeter, Memphis-style barbecue. The company will be releasing more sauce varieties to please barbecue enthusiasts across the country.
“We’re coming out with a Jack Daniels Mustard Sauce to hit the Carolinas profile with vinegar and mustard,” he says. “We’re coming out with some flavors to satisfy some of those [other] regions.” IP