Secret sauce stays that way

Salt Lick takes the spotlight in a feature in today’s NYT: Life’s Great Mystery? It’s in the Sauce (page E6, byline Michelle Slatalla). On a quest, the writer tries to winkle out the ingredients, even quizzing the owner, but resorts to buying the sauce, abandoning the hope of home replication. Sometimes it seems as though Austin’s the condiment capital of the universe. Every visitor falls in love with some concoction or other. One of ours seeks Caritas Ranch Bar-B-Q sauce. This mysterious potion has been found sometimes at a Randall’s, sometimes at an Albertsons, and sometimes at a Sun Harvest. Now, at least, despite the burden of shipping costs, it’s out there to be bought via the Web. Someone else loves Lana’s Sweet & Sour Sauce. It’s been a blessing that this product has lately been reliably to be found at the Central Market’s northern establishment (though not in the southside one). I myself have become hopelessly addicted to Jaime’s Spanish Village hot tomatillo jalapeno garlic sauce. So far, this has not involved any search missions, because the northern Central Market has not failed to make it available, in a chilled case. Those guests who visit the Tears of Joy Hot Sauce Shop demand repeat pilgrimages every time they come back to Austin, so think before you let them know it exists; otherwise, it will take a permanent place on every return itinerary.

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