Reading's Cocks's sauce on shelves for ChristmasBy David Millward
October 29, 2010
A classic Reading-made sauce could make a re-appearance in town centre stores in time for Christmas, say its makers.
Cocks’s Reading Sauce was on dinner tables across the country in the 19th Century but went out of favour in the 1960s and lost out to bigger competitors.
As reported in the Post last month, the team behind the LSQ2 restaurant have recreated the sauce.
Now, they have signed up a bottling company and aim to get the product into shops in the next few weeks.
Guests at the Pride of Reading awards were presented with taster bottles of the sauce on Wednesday.
Tony Cole, owner of LSQ2, said: “We had the bottles on the tables and samples in goody bags and asked for some feedback and reaction so far seems very positive.
“We will make any changes needed to the recipe and when we go to retailers it’s good to have some market research.”
One special guest, celebrity chef Antony Worrall Thompson has already given the sauce the thumbs up. And Pride of Reading award-winning restaurant Sweeney & Todd, in Castle Street, will be serving up the sauce with its pies while butcher WM Vicars & Son, in West Street, will also be stocking bottles.
Mr Cole is in discussion with Potts’ Partnership, in Marlborough, Swindon, about the type of bottle to use and then it is a case of persuading retailers to put it on their shelves.
Proceeds from the sale of Reading Sauce will go to charities, including the Alzheimer’s Society, and Mr Cole has asked Reading Post/getreading deputy editor Hilary Scott to sit on a board of trustees along with other respected businesspeople in the town.
He said: “I want them to help me run it properly so it’s all above board and to make sure all the money goes to the right charities.
“Between us I think we have a lot of contacts and I hope we can get Reading Sauce into major stores before Christmas.”
One of the first guaranteed customers will be Victor Blomer, of Southcote Farm Lane, Southcote, whose mother used to work at the Cocks’s factory in King’s Road, Reading town centre.
The 69-year-old said: “It was a good little place and the stuff they produced was pretty good.
“They did a lot of bottled vegetables and pickles and mum used to buy the sauce direct from the company.
“I would like a case of the new stuff so I could hand some out to friends and relatives because they all knew that she worked there.”