In 2002, a thoughtful New Orleans Bourbon Street bartender replaced the celery in my Bloody Mary with a pickled green bean. It was good…really good. But I knew it could be even better.
The green bean wasn’t crisp enough. It also needed a touch of heat: something zesty that would get your attention.
I began making my own pickled green beans for friends and family for special occasions—or for the odd Tuesday night. With testing, I figured out how to get that crisp, slightly spicy zing that I’d wanted in those first Bourbon Street beans.
Several years later, I pondered what I should give my buddies for Christmas. My wife, Christy, suggested things that worked well with her friends: pretty candles, bath lotions, perfumes—maybe a nice card. Somehow that didn’t seem right for guys who ride Harleys and drink their beer from a can.
Then inspiration struck— my grandfather had taught me that good food always makes people smile. My pickled green beans were just the ticket. It felt good to give something I’d made myself—something that tapped into my own family traditions.
After many years of pleading from our friends to make these available for everybody year round, we finally filed all of our fancy FDA paperwork and found a commercial kitchen.
Though I initially thought of Bolder Beans as cocktail garnishes, most customers today simply eat them straight out of the jar. It’s a healthy snack: no added sugar, no fat, and less than 100 calories per jar. With that kind of health going in you, I would think you’d earned a cocktail. To each their own.
We are still a family business. Christy now handles all of the sales and store relations. I spend my time working on manufacturing, product development, and plotting ways to return to Bourbon Street.