Retiring from a life at sea almost a decade ago, it didn’t take Mark and Bronwyn Welbeloved long to find their land legs and start creating their award-winning Worcestershire sauce.
Happily married for 30 years, Mark said he was once the captain but had now relinquished the reins to Bronwyn as she mastered making their Well Loved Worcestershire Sauce.
Bronwyn’s passion for making preserves, sauces and jams using farm fresh local ingredients flourished after an overwhelming response to her Worcestershire sauce at a market.
“Bronnie went off to the local market by herself and when she came home with $400 in her pocket, I knew it was something special and I was in,” Mark said.
“From day one we were committed to using quality ingredients, supporting local producers in each sauce we made in our converted cookhouse.”
Well Loved Worcestershire first time a winner
The couple’s sauce is now found in 130 shops around Australia and bottles continue to fly off the shelves.
Well Loved Worcestershire Sauce has recently been crowned the best in both Australia and New Zealand in the Mr Chilli food awards.
Having never entered a competition before Mark said they were blown away after receiving the news of the first-place win.
“We laughed, we cried and then we laughed some more,” Mark said.
“It just goes to show people love their Worcestershire sauce.”
A lot of love and care goes into every bottle of Well Loved Worcestershire Sauce and there are four varieties available to suit the individual palate.
Mark said there was the original Worcestershire sauce and, after advice from customers, they created two other varieties before eventually making the award-winning fourth bottle.
“We have four heats in our sauce,” Mark said.
“The original recipe, then some said it was too hot and others said it wasn’t hot enough, so we have a strength either side.
“We decided to use the second hottest chilli you can buy on the market, the Trinidad scorpion chilli, we get this from Goanna Hill Chilli at Gaeta.
“Using top quality ingredients like this has really steered us in the right direction.”
Taste Farmers Market biggest support
After living on a boat within arm’s reach of one another for 20 years, you’d think the couple would need their own space.
But Mark said it’s the opposite and if they’re not busy in the kitchen cooking up some of the finest sauces, they are selling it together at festivals around Queensland.
“This year we are really looking forward to the Taste Bundaberg Festival,” Mark said.
“It’s our biggest day of business for the year, the support from locals is terrific and so we have actually doubled our store size this year to keep up with it all.
“We’ve been going to this festival for four years, and we actually sold out by 10am the first year!
“We sold more than a bottle a minute, it was so popular that we’ve had 30-40 per cent growth each year.
“For us it’s really a fairy-tale story and we are really enjoying the life that we are living.”
For those who haven’t tried Well Loved Worcestershire Sauce, Mark said it was the perfect ingredient to add in stews, spaghetti bolognaise or on bacon and eggs for breakfast.
He said one of his favourite ways to enjoy it was poured over ice cream.
“Customers told me for years they enjoyed it poured over ice cream, so I actually made ice cream with it – it’s delicious,” he said.
“I never thought about adding it to ice cream, but flavours like caramel come out in it because all the individual flavours develop separately in your mouth.”
Mark said the longer the Worcestershire sauce sat in the cupboard the better and bolder the taste.
“The longer you keep it the smoother the taste – just remember to give it a good shake as the good stuff is always at the bottom,” he said.
The Taste Farmers Market will be held on Saturday 12 June from 7 – 11am at Alexandra Park (West), Quay Street.