Macho Mayo is getting ready to bulk up its offerings

machomayo-062415 Mike Lee will take the stage at Maker Faire this Saturday to talk about Macho Mayo – the four-year old company (which some may know locally by its original name of Mannaise) that has transformed mayo into a spicy, dippable condiment. “I don’t know if I can talk about mayonnaise for 15 minutes,” Lee says over the course of a 40-minute interview about mayonnaise. He might start with his own journey to owning part of a Kansas City condiment company. In 2012, Mannaise was a Kickstarter-backed, locally made condiment produced by Adam Hawley and Chase Lauer. At the time, Lee, a former Marine, was running a care package business to ship goods to serviceman overseas. Hawley and Lauer reached out about their product and the taste and local connection sold Lee. “The Mannaise name is funny, but I don’t think it’s something you can do a lot with,” Lee says of the decision to change the name. “This is a lot more than mayo.” He came aboard in 2014, partnering with Hawley and Lauer, and made Macho Mayo his full-time business in February of this year. With his care package business, Lee was featuring more than 300 products. Now, he’s focusing on just two: Macho Mayo Spicy Roasted Jalapeno and Macho Mayo Zesty Roasted Green Chile (a third flavor made with poblano peppers is in the works). “You get garlic – we don’t use powdered garlic, we use the real deal — and a little bit of ghost pepper powder. You get heat on the tail end with the roasted jalapeno, but it’s not Thai hot,” Lee says. “The cream cheese is our secret ingredient because it makes Macho Mayo so creamy.” The spicy sauce is hot, while Lee characterizes the green chile version as medium. The versatility of Macho Mayo continues to surprise Lee. He’s used it as a mayo substitute in tartar sauce and deviled eggs and as a dip with pizza, buffalo wings and vegetable platters. “You can do more than just spread this on a sandwich or burger,” Lee says. “You can put it on everything but ice cream and cereal. I had a lady make an apple pie with it.” Macho Mayo is currently stocked in area HyVees, Hen House, McGonigle’s and barbecue stores. Lee is looking to increase their manufacturing runs – they currently use Flavor Trade to bottle their product – and is in talks with a local sandwich shop about featuring Macho Mayo as a spread offering. “I want to build a team and I want to spoil Kansas City,” Lee says. “It’s so much fun watching people get a good eating experience and being happy about what they’re eating.” [Images via Facebook: Macho Mayo]

Jonathan Bender

Jonathan Bender is the founder of The Recommended Daily.

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