Funded! This project was successfully funded on October 21.

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Sawatdi krap! A new original, premium quality, world-inspired hot sauce made in small batches with real fruits and vegetables.

The Apinya Story

Adam and Apinya Ross met at a mutual friends' Independence Day party in 2011. Shortly after we started dating we began sharing our cooking skills with each other. Apinya's were Thai dishes she knew from working at her mother’s restaurant in Khon Kaen and Adam's were dishes he tried while traveling—Peruvian, Indian, Greek, and others. Sharing these meals resulted in the core idea of our company which combines Thai ingredients with flavors from other world cuisines.

From home kitchen to professional copacker, overseeing quality the entire way
From home kitchen to professional copacker, overseeing quality the entire way

One dinner, Apinya made a dipping sauce from Thai chilies, ginger, soybean paste, and garlic that struck Adam as having the perfect balance of spiciness and flavor. The next day we started thinking about how we could share it with others as a bottled condiment. Apinya Thai Chili Sauce was developed over 8 months, 36 different ingredients, and 68 test batches in our kitchen, refining the recipe each time to find the perfect balance of spicy and savory, heat and flavor.

Tasting tables and on the shelves at retailers
Tasting tables and on the shelves at retailers

In less than a year we've created and manufactured 4 original sauces, partnered to sell with 29 retail stores in 49 locations nationwide, have been published in over a 15 media outlets, won a Golden Chile Award for Best Asian-style Hot Sauce, and we were chosen as The Gourmet Retailer Editors' Pick (50 selected from 940 entries). So far everything has been developed ourselves from the ground up and 100% self-financed, but in order to make our fifth chili sauce, produce some great Kickstarter-first products, and meet our long-term goals we need your support!

Inspiration! Traveling through Thailand, Peru, and Morocco
Inspiration! Traveling through Thailand, Peru, and Morocco

The Sauces

Thai Chili Sauce: Inspired by the flavors of Thailand, but totally original. Made with ginger, garlic, fresh Thai chilies, and roasted red peppers. Gingery, garlicky, and peppery. Pairs well with unseasoned chicken, fish, and steak, sandwiches, soups, pizza, bland Chinese takeout; use it as a dip for seafood, kabob, veggies, dried mango. Use it to replace ketchup, cocktail sauce, other hot sauces.

Thai Basil Aji Sauce: Inspired by the Peruvian aji verde salsa, infused with Thai flavors. Made with tomatillos, Thai basil, fresh Thai chilies, garlic, and cilantro. Tart and herbal. Pairs well with: salads, rotisserie chicken, burritos, yucca; mix it with mayonnaise for a creamier sauce. Use it to replace salad dressings, salsa, verde sauces for cooking. Our first fusion hot sauce.

Coconut Harissa: Inspired by Moroccan spiced harissa, infused with Thai flavors. Made with sun-dried chilies and tomatoes, coconut juice and pulp, fresh Thai chilies, and spices. Smokey, savory, and sweet. Pairs well with chicken, ribs, sandwiches, mac & cheese; use it as a dip for pita, cheese, and charcuterie. Use it to replace bar-b-que sauce, ketchup. Our second fusion hot sauce.

Pumpkin Panang: Inspired by seasonal fall ingredients, infused with Thai flavors. Made with pumpkins, coconut milk, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaf, and Thai chilies. Tangy, sweet, creamy, and hearty. This is the first in our line of seasonal sauces that use in-season ingredients and are only produced once per year in one batch.

"Sauce No. 5": The result of this Kickstarter! We're busy at work in the kitchen coming up with new flavors. NOTE: The first four sauces below are available now and can ship in October. If you elect to include the new “Sauce No. 5” in your rewards, your order will be held until it's produced. We are aiming for a mid-late November release.


What’s special about Apinya sauces?

All our chili sauces are gluten-free, fat free, low sodium, and contain no artificial colors or flavors. They stay fresh for up to a year from production and don't need refrigeration after opening. All our sauces are fruit and veggie based—these are definitely not just another brand of spicy habanero vinegar. We're based in Virginia, our sauces manufactured in Pennsylvania, ingredients sourced from local suppliers, and the labels are printed in Ohio.

We made it our mission to create foods using a few simple ideals: whenever possible, use fresh, raw ingredients instead of pre-processed, never use artificial flavors or colors, work with local small businesses, source ingredients as locally as possible, and most importantly, make totally unique foods of the highest possible quality.

Setting up a tasting table and sales booth at a local market
Setting up a tasting table and sales booth at a local market

What will the Kickstarter funds be used for?

To make our fifth original chili sauce: This is our first and main goal for this Kickstarter. We need backing to buy lab testing for safety approval, bottles, labels, ingredients, and labor to make our next batch. Our next new sauce will be developed as either a fusion sauce (right now we are exploring cuisines from Mexico and India) or the next seasonal sauce, Winter.

To buy more local produce: Ever since we had our first tomato from a local farmer's market, we can't eat supermarket tomatoes anymore and have truly come to believe that local is better. Our goal is to use at minimum one ingredient in every batch that is locally sourced. This can be a challenge because a lot of our ingredients are either only available in tropical climates or rarely in-season locally. Additionally, local produce comes from smaller suppliers, so the cost is higher. If we have the resources we can purchase larger quantities and store them for use when they're out-of-season as well as source locally for our new line of seasonal sauces.

To launch some Kickstarter-first products: The production of our very next sauce will be contingent on its success, but additionally the Tuk Tuk t-shirt and Apinya Trio gift sets (shown above) will be produced as a direct result of this project's funding!

To contribute to some long-term goals that will keep you enjoying Apinya and increase quality and accessibility: 

- Create at least two new chili sauces each year in our fusion and seasonal lines

- Create a custom squeeze bottle that is unique to our sauces

- Build and operate our own facilities to produce all our products directly (we currently strictly oversee workers in a professional facility for each batch we make)

- Work with a distributor to make our products more widely available around the country (and eventually, world!)

Filming our own commercial; covering a local kiosk with a giant poster for free advertising; stamping our own bags
Filming our own commercial; covering a local kiosk with a giant poster for free advertising; stamping our own bags

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

The risks to complete this project are very low. We have been actively creating, producing, selling, and marketing our sauces for almost one year. There have been no major setbacks, but we have worked out dozens of technical details from FDA approval, to finding a squeezable bottle that doesn't melt while filling it, to optimizing shipping costs with various packing arrangements, and have overcome every one of them. We see obstacles as challenges and actually enjoy working out solutions.

Our main concern is that we won't approve a final recipe for the 5th sauce by November; we always make dozens of test batches to find a perfect flavor balance and won't release a new product if we're not 100% confident in it. This is why we are offering our current sauces in place of the new one for backers. We know many of you will want to receive your rewards guaranteed in time for the holidays.

We are very creative when it comes to cutting costs. We repurposed a $5 shipping pallet to create a sales kiosk, deliver orders to retailers by foot or bike whenever possible, and have spent next to nothing on brand development and advertising.

Kob kun mak (thank you very much) for your support!

FAQ

  • -- Thai Chili Sauce --
    Nutrition Facts: Serv Size: 1 tsp (4.5g), Servings: 38, Amount Per Serving: Calories 2, Fat Cal 0, Total Fat 0g (0% DV), Cholest 0mg (0% DV), Sodium 34mg (1% DV), Total Carb <1g (0% DV), Protein 0g. Percent Daily Values (DV) are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

    Ingredients: Roasted peppers, Ginger, Thai chilies, Vinegar, Garlic, Sugar, Salt, Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), Potassium sorbate and Sodium to maintain freshness. Allergens: Contains sulfite

    -- Thai Basil Aji Sauce --
    Nutrition Facts: Serv Size: 1 tsp (4.5g), Servings: 38, Amount Per Serving: Calories 2, Fat Cal 0, Total Fat 0g (0% DV), Cholest 0mg (0% DV), Sodium 10mg (0% DV), Total Carb <1g (0% DV), Protein 0g. Percent Daily Values (DV) are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

    Ingredients: Tomatillos, Thai chilies, Cilantro, Vinegar, Garlic, Thai basil, Ascorbic acid, Salt, Pepper, Potassium sorbate Sodium bisulfite to maintain freshness. Allergens: Contains sulfite

    -- Coconut Harissa --
    Nutrition Facts: Serv Size: 1 tsp (4.5g), Servings: 38, Amount Per Serving: Calories 9, Fat Cal 2, Total Fat <1g (0% DV), Cholest 0mg (0% DV), Sodium 23mg (1% DV), Total Carb 1g (0% DV), Fiber <1g (1% DV), Sugars 1g, Protein 0g. Percent Daily Values (DV) are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

    Ingredients: Roasted coconut juice (Coconut juice, Water, Coconut pulp, Sugar, Citric acid, Potassium metabisulphite), Chilies (including Thai), Vinegar, Tomatoes, Coconut pulp, Garlic, Salt, Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), Spices, Potassium sorbate and Sodium bisulfite to maintain freshness. Allergens: Contains tree nuts, sulfite

    -- Pumpkin Panang --
    Nutrition Facts: Serv Size: 1 tsp (7.4g), Servings: 38, Amount Per Serving: Calories 3, Fat Cal 2, Total Fat <1g (0% DV), Cholest 0mg (0% DV), Sodium 17mg (1% DV), Total Carb 0g (0% DV), Fiber 0g (0% DV), Sugars 0g, Protein 0g. Percent Daily Values (DV) are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

    Ingredients: Pumpkin, Coconut milk (coconut extract, water), Water, Vinegar, Ginger, Thai chilies, Shallots, Garlic, Fish sauce (anchovy extract, water, salt, sugar), Sugar, Kaffir lime leaf, Lemongrass, Salt, Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), Spices, Potassium sorbate and Sodium bisulfite to maintain freshness. Allergens: Contains tree nuts, anchovies, sulfite

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Funding period

- (40 days)