A Sauce Too Good Not to Bottle

Bon Appétit chefs make as much as possible from scratch, often including their own condiments and sauces. But then Executive Chef Darryl Bell of Foundry & Lux created a barbecue sauce so good it begged to be bottled! That was the best way to ensure it could be shared well beyond the café’s walls.

Executive Chef Darryl Bell holding a jar of 816 BBQ sauce

Executive Chef Darryl Bell holding a jar of 816 BBQ sauce

Packing more than just a sweet-and-savory punch, Darryl’s Kansas City–style sauce does good as well: 20 percent of proceeds are donated to the nonprofits No Kid Hungry and the Rafiki Foundation. Organizations close to his heart, they lighten the burden for those who cannot provide for themselves. No Kid Hungry generates funds to provide breakfast for kids in need while attending school, while the Rafiki Foundation helps orphans and widows in 10 different African countries by providing supplies, education, food, and other critical support.

“My motivation to create 816 BBQ started off from the idea that I wanted to be a part of supporting something bigger than myself, bigger than my personal situation in the world. I have nursed an ambition to help those in need since I was eight years old and first visited a homeless shelter,” explains Darryl. “The challenge has been to translate those ideals into an action that was tangible and realistic. I brainstormed for months and decided to produce something natural, sustainable, and generated from a deep personal connection.”

Darryl first learned how to make barbecue sauce as a boy in Kansas City. (Its area code, 816, inspired the name.) On his path to executive chef at Foundry & Lux, which included stints at well-known and Michelin-starred fine-dining restaurants, Darryl worked his way through France, Tokyo, Chicago, and the Napa Valley, and refined his sauce recipe over time.

Made from California-sourced tomato paste, brown sugar, and vinegar, 816 delivers complex layers of flavor, offering hints of spice balanced with sweetness. Now Darryl has become one of the Northern California region’s own Locally Crafted vendors — and other Bon Appétit Bay Area chefs can buy the sauce and support his efforts. Everyone is thrilled by the homegrown initiative.

Submitted by Nora Cata, Senior Marketing Specialist