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Two Cleveland culinary products win Good Food Awards

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Clevelanders Ian Barrett of Fuego Fermentations and Alaina Caruso of The Home Pantry won high honors at the national Good Food Awards announced Friday, April 21, in Portland, Oregon. Barrett received the award for his fermented habanero hot sauce. Caruso was recognized for her strawberry rose jam.

The Good Food Foundation recognizes products for the combination of responsible business practices and superior taste. The Cleveland companies were among 200 out of 2,000 entries that won.

Both products are made in Cleveland’s Old Brooklyn neighborhood. The fermented habanero hot sauce is sold in retailers around Northeast Ohio. Products from The Home Pantry are sold at the West Side Market and specialty retailers in 26 states.

“It is great for Habanero and Fuego Fermentations as a brand to get recognized for the tasty sauces that we work so hard to get right,” says Barrett. “What makes our products special is the passion we put behind them and the attention to detail. We care about hot sauce. That’s why we make hot sauce for hot sauce people.”

Caruso is also pleased. What’s special is that we love what we do. We hand cut and make all of our products, we de-seed the jam, we taste test and texture test every batch,” she says. “I think all of the care that goes into making these products show up in the end result.”

“I have no expectations throughout this whole process as a business,” she notes. “My ultimate goal is to enjoy life and to always do my best, not be the best. I am just so grateful that what I love to do is reflected back from everyone who enjoys the jams. It’s a really nice feeling.”

Paris Wolfe is a life and culture reporter for Paris Wolfe She has a special interest in food, dining, cocktails and spirits. You can reach her with news and story ideas at [email protected]. Here’s a directory of her latest posts. Follow her on Instagram @pariswolfe.


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