I was never one that particularly loved school. If I had it my way I would've been home playing video games. I found a glimmer of hope when I started taking computer programming in high school. We learned how to make simple applications and also games similar to old pong style games and I absolutely loved it. I said to mom. "I want to be a video game designer!" Only one problem . . . more school. I was never really that ambitious growing up so the idea of going to school and actually having to put time and effort to learn something was pretty overwhelming, so I decided to pass.
As I mindlessly worked my way through several majors at community college (I probably changed my major after every semester), I decided it was time to take a break and really start thinking about the direction I wanted to take. In the meantime, I started dishwashing at a local restaurant so I could bring in money since I wasn't going to school anymore. This is when I knew I needed to start figuring my stuff out or else I was going to be a dishwasher forever! *GASP* Being in the kitchen started to come pretty naturally for me so over time I started working my way up. But while I was climbing up the ladder, I knew the kitchen life wasn't what I wanted. I wanted to CREATE things! So I decided I was going back to school for video game design.
I ended up loving video game design. Everything about coming up with an idea and being able to create really intrigued me. I was in a pretty good spot at this point. I loved what I was going to school for and I was still working in the kitchen getting loads of hours every week. Overtime I was confronted with a major decision I was eventually going to need to make. If I really wanted to work for some of these big name video game design companies I was going to need to move pretty far away from my family. I have always been close to my family so I never had any intentions of moving. It was then I made the decision to quit school, focus on my job and see where life took me.
Life ended up taking me in a different direction. I found myself getting promoted as a Sous Chef at my first restaurant job. This is where things really started to change for me. Up until this point I was really just a reliable line cook that worked hard. I never went to culinary school but after becoming a Sous Chef I really learned a lot in the industry. As I learned more I developed a passion for cooking. I started to explore making things on my own and that's when I really started experimenting. This is when I learned how to cook hot sauce! However, even as I learned, the kitchen lifestyle never really hooked me. Low pay, lots of hours, grueling work, and having to request time off to do stuff? No way. So I thought to myself, if I have the skills to manage someone else's kitchen and make food that people are willing to pay for, why don't I just do it on my own terms.
At this point I really started looking into ways on how to make an income for myself. Just like creating video games, I was intrigued by taking an idea and bringing it to life. I thought about things I could do that really utilized my strengths in the kitchen but didn't involve all the stress of a restaurant. I've always been a hot sauce lover but I know its not everyone's cup of tea. I wanted to create a sauce that goes on everything and everyone can love (or at least try to!) I've tried a lot of hot sauce and it was hard to find a sauce that didn't overpower the dish with vinegar or burn your mouth off with zero flavor. So I used my knowledge as a chef and started experimenting with different recipes and I ended up creating a recipe that eventually evolved into what it is today. Since then I have quit my job, moved to Maine and have become a licensed business working out of Fork Food Labs in Portland Maine. Follow us @galactichobosauce to keep up with the rest of the journey!