Drexel Culinary Science Alums Create Green Dragon Sauce
July 2, 2014
There is no doubt about the popularity of Sriracha lately. From restaurants to the refrigerator, it’s become a mainstream condiment. Much of its success is through the desire of consumers for global flavors. It was also the inspiration for two culinary science alums to create Green Dragon Sauce, a product that plays on the popularity of Sriracha using spicy green jalapenos complemented with garlic and cilantro with a touch of sweetness.
Matt Vignola, BS culinary science ‘12 and Kevin Ernhoffer, BS culinary science ‘12 created Green Dragon Sauce while working in the R&D KITCHEN at Chelten House Products in New Jersey. Chelten House Products is an industry leader in developing premium products for food retailers. The company’s expansive array of products includes salad dressings, sauces and marinades, salsa, pasta sauces, ketchup and mustard.
The idea for Green Dragon Sauce came to Vignola and Ernhoffer while they were working on a private label Sriracha formula. Through extensive culinary research, formula testing, tastings and analysis, balancing the spicy and sweet, Green Dragon Sauce took nearly a month to perfect. Once completed, the reaction to the product was unanimously positive and Vignola and Ernhoffer knew they had winner. So much so, Chelten House decided the product was worthy enough to enter it in the Association for Dressings and Sauces’ national competition being held in November.
In addition to Green Dragon Sauce, the duo has been working on expanding Chelten House’s diverse portfolio of Asian sauces and creating new products with Latin flavors. While Chinese and Japanese sauces have been popular, Thai and Korean variations have been gaining traction. Latin flavors from Peru have also led to opportunities for marinades and dressings using the Aji Amarillo, a small yellow chili which is a staple ingredient to Peruvian cuisine.
Both Vignola and Ernhoffer credit Drexel‘s focus on industry success as a reason they have been able to succeed so early in their careers. “I believe the entire Drexel experience places an emphasis on networking and professionalism that sets us apart from others,” said Ernhoffer.