The creation of Lone Star Heat Products, Inc., began while Dean and his spouse, Shelley Berube were having one of their annual social gatherings. Dean, who was born under the mild taste buds of his parents’, inherited a shyness to spicy foods. It was not until the native Texan was approximately 18 that he met Shelley, of Hispanic descent, and he began to enjoy a spicier way of living! After frequenting several local establishments and continually being disappointed with the quality of served foods, Dean and Shelley took it upon themselves to create a Tortilla Soup that was quick, convenient and had that true authentic taste. Their new spicy creation was awesome, but convenient was another story. In the beginning, the Tortilla Soup was selfishly consumed by just Dean and Shelley. However, large quantities seemed to always be made, and family would just stop by if they thought soup was in the kitchen! By word of mouth, the couple received interest from peers, colleagues, friends of friends and ultimately the public. Based on the time and costs involved with the Tortilla Soup, it was impossible to provide everyone who desired a taste. However, at random social gatherings, they always knew how to spice up the evening, Tortilla Soup and Margaritas! It was at one of these social gatherings that both Dean and Shelley forgot to purchase salsa. On a last minute effort, they decided to give salsa making a shot, but with a unique twist… Chicken Broth! It sounds crazy, but it made perfect sense. Based on the strong following of the couples Tortilla Soup, they removed the chicken chunks, corn, etc., added additional seasonings and vegetables to thicken the salsa, and the true birth of Lone Star Heat occurred. The first sampling of such a salsa involved approximately 75 people. There was an immediate rave over the salsa. However, they had their regular soup supporters beckoning for more soup as well. It was from that night that comments were digested such as it needs to be hotter, milder, saltier…
It was not long thereafter that the couple was receiving many requests to produce the salsas for a fee. At that time, Dean and Shelley Berube agreed that, if they were going to pursue this endeavor, it would be with the understanding that they would create a product line that was not only flavorful, but also consistent. The couple determined that wholesome ingredients would be the key to consistently providing a guaranteed fresh flavor. After receiving numerous accolades on the Mild, Medium, and Hot salsas, the couple expanded the line gradually with other award-winning products like Black Bean, Chipotle, and Habanero Salsas! It was not until after a year in the business that the two young entrepreneurs were able to create a shelf-stable, soluble Tortilla Soup and Chili Starter. It did not take long for the products to catch on in the market.
As with any start up adventure, the couple struggled balancing their 9-5 careers, the business, and the 3 to 4 hours of sleep that were allowed. Venturing out from friends, family, and local accounts, the next venue to conquer was the United States. The couple introduced the products to the fiery foods industry and was astonished at not only the encouraging comments, but more importantly, the orders. At that time, it was determined that the couple needed help. With a little research, and a whole lot of luck, the couple stumbled upon a co-packing facility that assisted the company as they catapulted to a new level. It did not allow for any additional sleep, but merely shifted the levels of stress. With a few more Industry shows under their belts, Dean and Shelley found themselves surrounded with several local, regional, national, and international awards. Today, the company’s distribution is growing consistently, as well as their product line. They currently offer Medium, Chipotle, and Habanero Salsa’s, as well as a Tortilla Soup Fixins and a Chili Fixins. Their most recent addition to the line is a mouth-watering chipotle-based Barbecue Sauce. All of their products are available under a Lone Star Heat or Southern Heat label. Currently, another line of specialty foods is on the rise– Hidden Creek. As of today, a delicious Jalapeño Jelly and an Amaretto Peach Pecan Jelly are available. Also, gift packs are available as a perfect year round gift.
The story about this couple and their business is far from over. The couple has decided that they will shift their focus from broadening their product line for the time being, while they make a run at expanding their family line. Dean and Shelley Berube have one main belief, “No meal is complete without Lone Star Heat!” The couple simply states, “Try our products and you too will see why they are the most preferred condiments across the south… north… east… and west!”
Dean and Shelley praise their success on one thing… Brand Loyal Customers! It is these customers that make all of this possible and this particular company is extends a heartfelt gratitude to all!