I'm thankful for many things on our 6th birthday.
In many ways, this has been the busiest and most exciting year for us so far. So busy, in fact, that this is the first blog post I’ve been able to write since last year's birthday blog! We've been launching so many exciting new products.
First a little history for you. Did you know the original name of the company? If you said, “The Reluctant Pepper Company,” give yourself a pat on the back.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t long before I realized we needed a name change. While we did launch with the best Tellicherry Peppercorns on the planet, I felt the "Pepper" part of the name would be a little too confining.
After much thought, I somehow managed to come up with an even less memorable name, “The Reluctant Trading Experiment.”
Kidding aside, it really has been the perfect name. When your first name is "Reluctant," you are allowed to take your time to get things right. I'm a perfectionist, so being "Reluctant" is always an excellent excuse.
Also, the word "Reluctant" is truthful. When we started, I didn’t know a Tellicherry Peppercorn from a telephone pole. I thought pepper was all the same. (Here’s the full story.) But eventually, I gave in to the amazing aroma of the Tellicherry peppercorns and followed my nose.
I like the word "Experiment" in our name too. When it's an experiment, you have license to try new things and move in new ways. I like the freedom.
A Reluctant Timeline
We launched with our signature Tellicherry Peppercorns in 2012, then we added our signature Flaky Icelandic Sea Salt in 2013. A few more items followed, but it took awhile. The floodgates opened this fall. We added ton of new things. Like new gorgeous salt and pepper mills from Denmark. New stoneware salt cellars. New gift sets. New Monsoon Moon Indian Whole Bean Coffee. Sourced in India. Roasted in Indiana.
We even added chef aprons made on 100-year old handlooms in Divakar’s hometown. You really have to come see what we’ve been up to.
In addition to our consumer business, we picked up several award-winning chef customers including a 3-star Michelin Star restaurant in San Francisco. (There are only 14 Three-Star Michelin Restaurants in the country.)
The spices we supply our top restaurant chefs are the same ones we offer you on our consumer website. So if you haven't ventured beyond our pepper and salt, you really ought to try the other stuff. You won't be sorry.
For me, December 12th is Thanksgiving
Thank you to my wife Karla, aka Mrs. Reluctant, for your amazing support. Behind every great spice man, is a great spice woman, right? She really is the glue that keeps us together.
Thank you, Divakar, for consistently supplying us with the freshest, most extraordinary spices (and now amazing textiles) on the planet. You should take a pride in all of the 5-star reviews on ReluctantTrading.com.
Thank you, Mike J., our newest employee, for following me from The Land of Nod to Reluctant Trading. Your trust will be rewarded. (BTW, does anybody know how to update a Wikipedia page out there? Let me know!)
Thank you, Pauline, Olivia, and company. Wonderful to have a partner that cares as much about getting our packages out on a daily basis as we do.
Thank you, Michael Mabry, for another year of beautiful, spot-on product and graphic design.
Thank you, Alan Shortall, for another year of spot-on photos. While we didn’t have the excitement of getting attacked by monkeys this year, I'm also relieved not to have to get another tetanus shot.
And last, but certainly not least, thank you for your business and amazing reviews.
I still see every order that comes through. I still read every review. I still answer my emails. Looking forward to more experiments in the year ahead.
All the best to you and your family this holiday season!
Scott, Karla and Mike
"The Reluctant Trading Experiment Story"
In case you haven't seen the video that tells the story of the start of our company, I thought I'd include it here. In the words of the guy that plays Divakar, "Too good! Too good!"