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Posted June 25, 2005 by Nick Lindauer in Hot Sauce News
 
 

Hot Stuff of Saratoga is changing hands


Kate Francesa and Rick Monaco have owned the business for the past three years. They closed the business deal Friday with John and Sherry Knotek, who will take over the the store on July 1.

Hot Stuff of Saratoga sells a variety of salsas, hot sauces, condiments, cookware and accessories. ‘The business is growing every day and demanded our full-time attention,’ Monaco said. ‘Operating Saratoga Salsa is a full-time job.’

Francesa and Monaco will be focusing on Saratoga Salsa, which they founded four years ago. ‘The Knoteks are very energetic and have great plans to expand the market,’ Monaco said. ‘We couldn’t ask for anyone better to buy the business.’

Knotek is a native Saratogian and his wife works at St. Clement’s School. Monaco said they are thrilled that the store will remain the same type of store and the name will also stay the same.

‘It’s a destination here in Saratoga,’ he said. ‘It’s the only place like it from Port Jefferson, Long Island to Saranac Lake.’ ‘We’re looking forward to taking the ball and rolling with it,’ John Knotek said.

He plans to expand the e-commerce part of the business, build up distribution and expand on certain lines of merchandise.

‘The fun begins July 1,’ Knotek said.

Saratoga Salsa

Saratoga Salsa has customers in Key West, North Carolina and New Orleans. Their original plan was to visit them for tastings of new products, Monaco said.

‘We haven’t been able to get there because of the store,’ he said.

They’ll be operating the company from North Carolina during the winter.

They entered in the America’s Best Zesty Food Show in California last weekend and took first, second and third places for their three entries. The awards were determined by chefs who used the products to cook and make drinks.

‘Everything has a family twist,’ Monaco said.

Their latest product, Fireman Fred’s Flaming 3 Alarm Chili Mix, is named after his father.

Some local merchants who stock Saratoga Salsa are Pepper’s Market, The Candy Gram, Compliments to the Chef, Putnam Market and Impressions of Saratoga.


Nick Lindauer

 
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