Artisan Spotlight: NW Elixirs

Makers, Meet, Williams-Sonoma Behind the Scenes

Does hot sauce live on your kitchen table next to the salt and pepper? Are Tabasco and Tapatio practically food groups? Then today, we’re talking to you.


I chatted with the guys behind the Portland company NW Elixirs to learn the story behind their Hott Sauce #1, which Chef Andrew Garrett (pictured above) and his partner Mitch Miller are calling “the ideal sauce for absolutely anything.”


How did you start making hot sauce?

Miller: Chef Garrett spent over two years developing this sauce. He wanted a single sauce to replace the shelf of condiments in his fridge. He wanted a multi-purpose sauce with different layers of flavor to be used for cooking and baking, marinating AND used on top of foods.


Who inspires you in the kitchen?

Garrett: From the time I was old enough to pull bowls and pans out of drawers, I was cooking.  My father and grandmother influenced my cooking style most with heavy spices and Cajun accents. I really loved the way our family dinners felt and the sense of community a small town BBQ can have.


What’s your favorite way to use your product?

Miller: If we had one favorite use, we wouldn’t have to make so much of it! We literally use this sauce with almost every meal, and the beautiful part about it, is it’s so versatile. We’ve even had one of our fans busily working out how to use it in her brownies!


How did you create your packaging and style?

Miller: “New” and “high tech” are not always all the rage. Sometimes “classic” or “vintage” is truly the way to go. Our bottles were designed after traditional apothecary bottles, containing medicinal elixirs (which is also how we stumbled across our name). After some research, we found the definition of elixir: the absolute embodiment or quintessence of anything — and it all fell into place. NW Elixirs: the absolute embodiment of food.


We are excited to release NW Elixirs’ #’s 2, 3, 4, 5 and so on!


About the author: As a merchant for the Williams-Sonoma artisan market program, Vicky seeks out artisans and their products for the 5 markets in the cities of New York, Chicago, Atlanta, San Francisco, Portland and soon to be Austin for their monthly events. She looks for artisanal products that customers can taste, learn and experience first hand from the artisan themselves.

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