* The owners of a company that successfully commercialized Mambo sauce — the original wing sauce in the DMV – were honored recently with the Family Business Award by Black Enterprise, the premier business, investing and wealth-building resource for African Americans.
“It feels kind of surreal. We never won an award recognizing how much work we’ve done,” says Arsha Jones, who, along with her husband, Charles, operates Capital City Co. out of a 2,000-square-foot warehouse in Anne Arundel County, Maryland. “It feels really good to be recognized by your own.”
The Jones’ received the prestigious award last month in recognition of their Capital City Mambo Sauce company, which started in 2011 in the kitchen of their suburban Maryland home. Every year at its Entrepreneurs Summit, BE recognizes African-American entrepreneurs for their accomplishments in cultivating successful small businesses.
Only two months after selling their special condiment online, Arsha, a veteran web designer, was contacted by The Washington Post, which featured the couple and their sauce in a Sunday front-page article. That story led to more than 1,400 orders overnight and $25,000 in sales the first year. This year, sales are projected at $1 million.
Arsha, a Washington native, says her love of Mambo sauce – the origins of which date back to Black restaurants in the 1950’s, and can now be found in nearly every Chinese takeout in the District – began as a pre-teen. “It’s sweet and savory with a tomato base. It really goes well with things that are salty and fried. We have an inherent knowledge of Mambo sauce in D.C. Ours is easy on the palate.”
Capital City Co. Mambo Sauce comes in “mild” and “sweet hot”. Their web site – www.shopcapitalcity.com – also sells t-shirts and gifts. A cookbook will debut at Thanksgiving this year as part of gift boxes containing aprons and D.C. memorabilia.
The media is invited to consider Capital City Mambo Sauce and Arsha Jones for interviews. Related posts on social media should use the hashtags #MamboSauce and #CapitalCityCo.
Alicia Maxey Greene