Hot sauce master David Tran arrived in California in 1979 from Vietnam, humble and hungry but in need of a spicy additive worthy of his Pho soup. He quickly set out on a mission to produce one to share with his Southeast Asian community of Los Angeles, which was also suffering a hot sauce drought. Within a few months, his first chili sauce “Pepper Saté Sauce” was born and Tran began selling it door to door to local restaurants and markets. He named his company “Huy Fong Foods” in remembrance of the old Panamanian freighter, the “Huey Fong”, which carried Tran out of Vietnam, and chose his zodiac animal, the rooster, as his logo.
The Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce we all know and love was first sold in 1983, made from fresh, red Jalapeño chili peppers, vinegar, garlic, salt and sugar. Huy Fong Foods has never advertised their products, they simply let the sauce’s legend spread by word of mouth, and spread it has, like wildfire, now ranking as one of the world’s leaders in the hot sauce industry.
“Run free, my child, and spread the sweet, spicy gospel of truth.”
Starting in a small shop in Chinatown and moving into a 68,000 square foot building in Rosemead, CA in 1986, Huy Fong Foods production of Sriracha sauce has increased every year. In 2010 the company had to open a new, 650,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Irwindale, CA where they produce up to 20 million bottles per year, enough sauce to fill about five Olympic swimming pools.
All the jalapenos used in Huy Fong sauces are grown nearby in Southern California and processed less than a day after harvesting. Over 100 million pounds of peppers roll through their factory over the course of a 10-week harvest season, which provides for their year-long sales. Still, the demand for the irresistibly spicy sauce is growing faster and faster.
Sriracha lovers around the world erupted into a state of utter horror and disbelief when they heard the rumor that production might be suspended indefinitely due to a lawsuit initiated by the city of Irwindale, home of Huy Fong Foods manufacturing plant. Get this, the city was complaining of the SMELL! What a strange turn of events, considering how many people have expressed great interest in a Sriracha perfume.
The manufacturing plant has rooftop vents with filters that absorb approximately 90% of the chilli and garlic odors from the processing exhaust, and Huy Fong has done everything in their power to better contain the delicious aromas. California is the home of Huy Fong, and we’d like to keep it that way. So, with the assistance of Governor Jerry Brown’s office, an agreement was reached with the city to drop the suit. Add it to the state seal, shout it from the rooftops and break open that box you’ve been guarding with your life.
The clear, iconic plastic squeeze bottle with a rooster logo filled with ravishing red spicy sauce and topped with a bright green cap is hard to miss, but beware the innumerable imitators.
David is picky about his peppers. Not only are they grown in the U.S.A., but they all come from one farm- Underwood Ranches located in Ventura County, California. Owned by Craig Underwood, this is the largest red pepper farm in the country, growing over 100 million pounds of peppers per year on 1,750 acres. Although this may sound like enough peppers to last through the next ice age, the supply must increase every year to meet the increasing demand for Huy Fong Foods sauces.
Every day over the 10-week harvest season, 30 semi loads of fresh peppers arrive at the factory doorstep within 2 hours of being picked, hot and ready to be processed in less than 24 hours. It’s a big job, but Craig only sells his peppers to David and David only buys his peppers from Craig. This unusual farmer- manufacturer relationship allows Huy Fong Foods to offer premium quality products made from peppers grown, picked and processed exclusively in California.
Originally invented for use in Pho soup and other traditional Vietnamese foods, Sriracha sauce has since infiltrated much of the Asian food industry, now widely used even by top Sushi chefs to spice up a range of rolls and dishes.
As Sriracha’s popularity grew, so did curiosity and an era of experimentation began. Users quickly discovered its endless versatility and compatibility with many different types of food including pizza, noodles, meat marinades, burgers, the list could go on for days…
“I’ll do what I want”, an enterprising gourmet chef exclaimed as he squeezed a glob of Sriracha sauce into a batch of hand-churned ice cream. You can now find Sriracha in many dessert dishes, making people jump with joy or plummet into speechless confusion at the fact that somehow, it works!
Legend has it that Sriracha is good on absolutely everything. Everything edible, at least. Go ahead, spice up the whole menu! Try out one of these delicious, unique recipes or just use your imagination!
No more ducking under the table to sauce your meal, making back-alley deals or muttering requests to your server. Let go of any condiment shame you may have experienced in the past because in fact, Sriracha has benefits for your health, body and mind!
The capsaicin present in the peppers used to make Sriracha sauce is proven to make you
So go ahead, sauce freely!
Although churning out sweet and spicy bottles of Huy Fong Sriracha is a rewarding task of saucy splendor all on its own, it’s even more gratifying to find the internet peppered with odes, ballads, sonnets, fiery love proclamations and vows of undying devotion from the unabashed cult following Sriracha has amassed over the years.
Sriracha loves you, too!
Huy Fong produces three unique hot sauces, each with a flavor of its own. The most popular sauce is characterized by its clear plastic bottle, green cap, and Rooster logo. Sriracha hot sauces are the most versatile sauces you’ll find; whether you’re cooking Asian, American, Italian, or Mexican, there’s a sauce that will match your taste buds.
No weak sauce here!
Sambal Oelek is made of chilies with no other additives, such as garlic or spices, for a simpler taste. Use this sauce to add heat to a dish without altering the other delicate flavors.
Available in 8 oz., 18 oz., and 8.50 lbs. sizes
Sriracha is made from sun ripened chilies which are ground into a smooth paste along with garlic and packaged in a convenient squeeze bottle. It is excellent for adding a delicious, spicy kick to a wide variety of dishes. Like all Huy Fong sauces, only the highest quality ingredients are used – and never any artificial colors or flavorings.
Available in 17 oz. and 28 oz. bottles
Chili Garlic is a tempting blend of coarsely ground chilies and garlic. This delicious sauce complements everything from chips to poultry to soups. It has a full-bodied flavor that will make your mouth water.
Available in 8 oz., 18oz., and 8.75 lbs. sizes
Sriracha sauce is available in 17 oz bottles (perfect for your purse or briefcase) and 28 oz bottles (for the kitchen table), but at the request of so many loyal customers, Huy Fong will begin offering 1-gallon bottles for restaurant use (and for the most hardcore of addicts.) To-go packets are also available in some locations, great for traveling and hot-sauce emergencies.
You can find Sriracha sauce in almost any major supermarket, Asian market, and many restaurants.
For many customers, Sriracha is not just a condiment; it’s a way of life. Incorporating the sauce into almost every meal, keeping it on-hand at all times, eating it straight out of the bottle; some might call it obsession, but it must be love. With memorabilia ranging from iPhone cases to T-shirts to Lollipops, the Sriracha craze is evident, and it’s becoming more and more difficult to deny the possible existence of an organized Sriracha Festival.
Spice up your life with official merchandise straight from the birthplace of the world’s favorite hot chili sauce. You’ll find tees to proudly proclaim your Sriracha fandom, socks to keep your toes piping hot, knick-knacks of an unusually fiery variety, a zesty selection of rare Sriracha flavored treats, and more exclusive products to celebrate that sweet and bold Sriracha love.
Just one of the many fan sites offering endless praise for Sriracha and its many uses.
Sriracha has earned a cult following, but the story of this spicy sauce is a mystery to most fans. Dedicated to Sriracha lovers, this fast-paced documentary travels around the globe to reveal its origin and the man behind the iconic “rooster sauce.”