Interview Done By Mike Wilkerson
MW: Tell me about how your product came about?
GF: For years I would always have the responsibility for bringing the Bloody Marys to parties, vacations, and family get together. All my friends and family loved my recipe and said that I made the best Bloody Mary that they had ever had. Many times over the years I heard people say that “You have to sell this stuff”. I figured out that it is a hassle to cart around all the ingredients that I used in my recipe, so I came up with the idea of making a concentrated spice blend that you can add at the time you make your drink. That way you do not have to measure out all the ingredients every time you go to mix a drink. It makes it easy to make by the glass or by the pitcher and it comes out perfect every time. I became spoiled by enjoying my own mix and I refuse to order a Bloody Mary out at a bar or restaurant because you never know what you will get. Even two bartenders at the same place can make a drastically different tasting drink and most of them use some cheap mix that tastes like garbage.
MW: How me different lines do you have?
GF: I have learned that Bloody Mary fans are very passionate and very particular about their drinks. I do not wish to compete directly with the many pre made mixes already available on the market. Instead, I want my product to be different. It not only makes the best cocktail (even just with tomato juice I call it a Bloody Shame, but it is still a tasty drink!) but it also makes a great spice to add a kick to your favorite recipes. It goes great in chili, cocktail sauce, soups, dips, and all kinds of sauces. I have a page full of recipes on my website and ask people to contribute recipes that they come up with.
MW: Do you have any other products coming out?
GF: Rocko’s Bloody Seasoning Blend is my first and only commercial product so far. I am currently in around 25 stores and a dozen restaurants in the Metro Boston area. I need the product to grow and expand before I branch out into other products. I have some ideas about some other spicy condiments and marinades that I hope to produce in the future.
MW: Can consumers buy it from your website?
GF: Rocko’s Gourmet can be found on the website www.rockosgourmet.com. It lists all the retail locations and restaurants that currently sell the product. You can buy the product from the website using PayPal and pay a small shipping fee.
MW: Do you do food trade show?
GF: I have attended the Boston Food Show for the past couple years but have not had a booth. It is very costly and I would have to sell alot of product to make it worthwhile. Instead of having my own booth, I have concentrated on connecting with other vendors and distributors to try to keep expanding my business and supply chain. I hope to connect with some small to mid sized distributors that will help me to continue to grow my business across New England and beyond.
MW: What would you like to say in closing?
GF: My motto on my logo is “Life is too short to consume bland, boring food and drink”. I really believe that you should live each day to the fullest…like it could be your last. That includes enjoying every meal like it could be your last. Life is just too short to waste on anything less than great.
The video review I did of their product: