A History of George’s Signature Recipes

22 June 2023
A History of George’s Signature Recipes

Here at George’s, we’re proud of our signature recipes for our salsas and guacamole, but the stories behind those recipes, and the people who make them, are less well-known. 

This month, we’re opening the curtain to give you a peek at the history behind our salsa and guacamoles. Like most stories around here, it starts with our founder, George Rongos…

George’s goal

George didn’t start out wanting to open an international grocery store and chain of Mexican-inspired restaurants, slinging fresh food and fresher salsas. At first, he wanted something much more simple. He wanted to own something of his own, something a little different from what he’d known. 

His whole life, George knew what it meant to work hard and provide for your community. From farming in Greece to providing for his village to working for thirty years at Slater Steel, he worked and provided for his family and the people around him. Family was everything to George, but family wasn’t just his blood; everyone was family. 

While he worked at Slater Steel, he became friends with many of his Hispanic co-workers who missed the foods from back home. So, to serve his friends and the community, George shuttled truckloads of authentic ingredients from Chicago’s international markets (and beyond) back to Fort Wayne. If one of his friends asked for it, he’d go wherever was needed to find it and bring it home to them. Thus the idea for George’s was born. It was simply a way to provide for the people around him.

So George started working with his sons, Chris and Jerry, and a close friend and former employee, Miguel, to create the perfect salsa recipes. These salsas, sold alongside street tacos, would soon become another way his brand would make a mark on his community. 

George’s legacy

Those salsas have come a long way from being simple toppings for street tacos (although they absolutely still fulfill that role) in the three decades since George’s International Market was founded.

In response to the growing demand for Hispanic and international foods in the Fort Wayne area, George’s market and brand grew over time, as did his base of recipes. Before too long, George worked with Miguel to add pico de gallo, more types of salsa, and guacamole to the repertoire. 

When George moved into the market’s location on Taylor and Broadway, Miguel, together with Margarita, were responsible for making the iconic George’s Hot and Mild Salsas. Margarita has been making George’s salsas ever since! Suffice to say, she doesn’t need the recipe anymore! 

Fun Fact: Margarita whips up at least 300 Salsa containers a day and over 100 avocados for our Guacamole!

All of these containers of fresh-made, signature deliciousness are sold at George’s market every day. So when you buy a container of George’s Hot or Mild Salsa or guacamole, you’re not just buying a chip dip or side: you’re buying a little piece of history, our history. A story of hard work, service to the community, providing for family (whoever that may be), and dedication to excellence. 

A story that we’re proud to say is ours! 

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