That has been a common refrain from our friends over the years as we gave away our family Teriyaki Sauce as gifts during the holidays. It wasn’t until December of 2008 when we finally began taking them seriously.
I’m not sure there was really an exact “Ah Ha” moment, it just sort of developed as my wife and kids began talking about it. It may have been my daughter’s teacher relaying to us that she “could drink it straight from the bottle”. Or it may have been my son’s never-ending quest for ways to make money!
Whatever it was, the idea was developed and we were finally ready to take our recipe to market.
We contemplated several ideas. Local fairs, the Farmers Market, barbecue contests, etc. All seemed like a viable way to get started. So we first began looking for a bottle. It was not as easy as we thought. Having glass bottles shipped to us in NC proved to be a bit costly.
But we finally found one that we could afford and ordered our first 60. It seemed like a lot. We thought, “What if we only sell 5 or 10, we’ll be stuck with all these bottles!” We pressed on.
Next was a label. We developed an idea around a beautiful Hawaiian quilt and various other items we had purchased in Hawaii on a recent vacation. We gave a picture and our concept to a graphic artist who forged our first label. With just some slight revisions, we were ready to print.
Printing on our inkjet printer on some label stock from Staples it looked OK at first. Until it got damp. And smeared the ink. And tore the paper.
But we forged on.
After discussions with several quick print shops, we found a paper and an ink that we were happy with and printed a thousand labels! (We still have a stack of ’em left) These labels held up much better and we began selling our sauce.
Next post, our first customer is found!