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ABOUT US

Our Sauces

Pura Vida! Famous Original Recipe

Our restaurant owner customers buy it by the gallon. (Over 1,600 gallons in 2020.) Why? It's mild, but with a really nice kick, and it Works. On. Everything.
 
Our founder, Jorge Ball, invented this sauce after years of experimenting (he's very particular about hot sauce). For his
Famous Original Recipe Jorge blended Jalapeño and Habañero chile peppers from Mexico, sweet onions, ripe tomatoes, garlic, organic agave juice, fruit juices, sea salt, vinegar and his own special mix of herbs and spices. The happy result, immediately coveted by a growing fan base of family, friends, friends of friends and quickly several local restaurants, was an irresistibly versatile sauce that kicks up the flavor in just about every food you can imagine putting it on. Even chocolate pudding. (Really, it's true!)

Pura Vida! Famous Original Recipe is STILL made the same way Jorge made it back in the day -- by hand in small batches, now by our friend Miguel Esquivel at his spotless and very busy facility here in Southern California. 

Image by Bart Zimny
Pura Vida Famous Original Recipe
Pura Vida Famous Original Recipe Label
Pura Vida Famous Original Recipe

Why does Famous Original Recipe stand out from the crowd?

It's the abundant flavor, fusing fragrance with bite, hot and sweet. Many hot sauces just add heat. Pura Vida! Famous Original Recipe adds flavor and just the right kick of heat, enhancing and intensifying the taste of everything it meets. 

What can I use it on?

Um, everything. Really – if it’s worth putting in your mouth it’s going to be elevated by Pura Vida! sauce. It's amazing on fish, chicken, beef, vegetables and salads. Incredible in sauces and spreads. An inspired addition to scrambled eggs, fritattas and omelets. There’s really nowhere you can’t use Pura Vida! Famous Original Recipe – it’s up to you!

Pura Vida! Carolina Reaper

Introduced in July 2021, our wonderful new Carolina Reaper hot sauce has been years in the making. Developed with yes - the hottest pepper in the world, it's more than just fiery. It's fiery with amazing flavor, blended with fruit juices, garlic, agave, sea salt, sweet onions and a special herb and spice blend.

 

And as a medium hot sauce, it won't send you to the emergency room. Just to Nirvana. There's no pain with our Carolina Reaper, only pure deliciousness.

Jorge Ball developed this unique Carolina Reaper sauce because the Reaper's distinctive taste and incredible Scoville Scale rating of 2,200,000 SHU was crying out (literally) for an imaginative, flavor-fused approach. Not interested in killing the tastebuds of our customers, Jorge tamed the heat with a delicious blend of fresh ingredients so it shines but doesn't destroy. In other words, you can have your hottest pepper in the world and eat it too! 

Like all our sauces, it's made by hand in small batches, now by our friend Miguel Esquivel at his spotless and bustling facility here in Southern California. 

Image by Bart Zimny
Pura Vida! Carolina Reaper
Pura Vida! Carolina Reaper
Pura Vida! Carolina Reaper

Why does Carolina Reaper stand out from the crowd?

It's the taste of the hottest pepper in the world tamed to medium heat by incredible flavor. So you can savor its piquancy while enjoying its character. Pura Vida! Carolina Reaper is perfect for chile pepper heat lovers who are also interested in complex taste, not pain. 

What can I use it on?

It's a culinary wonderland of possibilities. Wonderful on beef, chicken and ribs, in salad dressings and all kinds of sauces, shrimp, crab and other seafood, vegetables and more. Fabulous in a Bloody Mary and glorious on a burger.  In short, Pura Vida! Carolina Reaper makes food come alive!

Our History

Pura Vida! Gourmet Chile Pepper Sauce began way back in 2009 when chef George Ball started making hot sauce from a home garden in Long Beach, California, where gorgeous home-grown chile peppers, tomatoes, and sweet Maui onions seemed like the perfect ingredients.

 

Through the years he tweaked and experimented, creating dozens of different recipes, growing and testing an array of peppers from all over the world. The results were taste-tested on friends and family, given as gifts for birthdays, holidays, house warmings and thank you gifts. The response was overwhelming! Everyone wanted more. So Pura Vida! Gourmet Chile Pepper Sauce was born.

monkey Holding Pura vida
Snake with Pura Vida

Today, Chef George still uses the most succulent local ingredients for our Famous Original Recipe and Carolina Reaper sauces: vine-ripened tomatoes, the finest fresh Jalapeño, Habanero, and Carolina Reaper peppers, sweet onions, fresh garlic and all the other delicious ingredients (15 in all!). Thanks to some exceptional and reliable sources, along with our good friends at Specialty Foods (who turn out our small batch sauce perfectly every time) we're keeping several local area restaurants well supplied along with selling to our loyal individual customers, whose numbers keep growing daily. Because our sauces are made with such special care and love, we know you’ll enjoy making them a part of your daily menu.

 

In fact, we bet as soon as you try them you'll be hooked, too. What we hear from all our customers is:

“I use your sauces on absolutely everything!”

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