He cooked up the salsa in a vat in his kitchen sink, where he put a fan in the window to blow out the onion aroma. The secret ingredient that made the salsa stand out was black-eyed peas. At first, he sold the salsa out of the trunk of his car.
That was 22 years ago. The Clearwater-based company Lewis founded, Little Freddy’s Gourmet Foods, grew to $1.5 million in annual sales and 10 employees before he sold it in 2001.
Lewis, 53, is now back in the business, with Best Brand Bottlers Inc. The model, says Lewis, is to provide private label contract production and packaging of a variety of private label sauces, condiments and salad dressings.