Food & Drink: Father, son team fired up about hot sauces

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For more on Silagy Sauce, and where you can find it in Clark County stores: www.silagysauce.com

Rachel Pinsky

It may seem odd to make hot sauce at a golf course, until you meet Dave Silagy. As Dave says, “I golf, I’m a big golfer.” His son and business partner, Mitchell, prefers mountain climbing. The father-son yin-and-yang of this relationship may be part of what makes Silagy Sauce unique.

Currently, there are two types of sauce available through their website and sold locally — a green Cilantro Lime Serrano sauce and a red Smokin’ Habanero sauce.

I sampled both. The green sauce reminded me of a Mexican tomatillo sauce — tangy from the tomatillos and fresh-squeezed lime juice with an herby overlay of fresh cilantro and a touch of heat from the serranos. This sauce goes well with scrambled eggs or drizzled on a chicken taco. The red sauce isn’t in-your-face and fire-in-your-throat hot. It has a smokiness that reminds me of chipotle peppers. This balance comes from a special blend of peppers. The smokiness is achieved by smoking the peppers on a smoker with a special blend of wood. Dave and Mitchell spent two years experimenting with the different blends of peppers and wood before they perfected their red sauce.

The Silagys use all fresh ingredients; there are no additives or artificial flavors in these sauces. Fresh produce arrives at their kitchen at the Cedars on Salmon Creek and in a day or two, after prepping and cooking the sauce, it is poured into glass bottles.

“We like the glass,” Dave told me, “because we feel that the plastic leaches and it’s going to affect the taste. The glass is pure, clean, and we hot fill our products and you can’t do that with plastic.”

How did this father-son team get into hot sauce? According to Mitchell, “My dad is just a creative genius when it comes to making food. If he makes a dish, everyone is over. ‘Hey, Dave’s making pizza’ or ‘Dave’s making chicken’ and we would have half the neighborhood over at our house.”

Dave’s interest and knowledge of global cuisine grew during the four years he was in the Navy stationed in places such as Hong Kong, the Philippines and Australia. “We pulled into Hong Kong,” Dave said, “and a lot of guys would just take off to find the Burger King in Hong Kong.” Not Dave, he enjoyed savoring the local cuisine and bringing those flavors back home into his kitchen. Dave and Mitchell are currently working on a Southeast Asian hot sauce featuring lemongrass, ginger and Thai peppers.

An eclectic blend of music is played while making the sauce. According to Dave, “We listen to classical music while prepping the vegetables.”

“When we are cooking the sauce, we listen to some classic rock like CCR,” added Mitchell. “And, when I’m cleaning up, AC/DC, something like ‘Thunderstruck.’ ”


Rachel Pinsky can be emailed at couveeats@gmail.com. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @couveeats.