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In this historical reenactment you can see a bunch of folks' having a conversation about salsas. The conversation goes like this,

  1. Decent Texan> More Picante sauce.
  2. Creepy foreign looking guy> Let's use mine?
  3. Texan 1> Oh that ain't Pace Picante sauce.
  4. Creepy foreign looking guy> What's the difference?
  5. Decent Texan> Pace is made from vegetables and spices by folks in San Antonio
  6. Texan 2> (finishing sentence) who know what Picante sauce should taste like.
  7. Texan 3> (laughing grabbing the offered bottle). This stuff is made in New York City
  8. Everyone> (shock) NEW YORK CITY?
  9. Decent Texan> Stranger, I hope you can beat a full house.

I'm NOT skeptical about the topic of this conversation, or the quality of Pace Picante sauce. But I would like to know whether or not New York City ever produced or marketed an alternative salsa. I can see New Yorkites exporting a spicy mustard, "shmear", or pizza; but, did they ever even venture into the world of salsas?

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  • This sounds like a generic advertisment
    – Joe W
    Jun 17 '21 at 20:06
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    You can find food of all kinds produced almost everywhere. I can buy locally-made salsa here in Minnesota. Here is an article with a list of 5 salsas made in New York it claims are better than Pace: foodrepublic.com/2015/02/17/…
    – Seth R
    Jun 17 '21 at 20:11
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    I think you're taking the advert somewhat too literally. The message needs to be "this sauce is made by people who don't know anything about Picante sauce"; to express that concisely, they name a big city the other side of the country. They're not talking about a real competitor, they're just saying you can't trust anything but "the real deal".
    – IMSoP
    Jun 17 '21 at 21:06
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    Why wouldn't they?
    – Joe W
    Jun 17 '21 at 22:53
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    One last comment: Downvoted for the "historical reenactment" nonsense. This was one a series of very clever television ads that put Pace Picante Sauce (which isn't all that good) on the map. Jun 18 '21 at 4:25
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Salsa is made in all corners of the world where people enjoy something on their corn chips. While mainly found in countries near Mexico, it is just sauce made from tomatoes, peppers, and onions. It is not at all hard to make. I have traveled to many parts of the United States and never had trouble finding a locally-made salsa in the grocery store anywhere I've gone. There is no reason to believe New York is any different. Here is an article referencing the same...er, "historical reenactment" listing 5 New York-made salsas that the author claims are better than Pace: https://www.foodrepublic.com/2015/02/17/5-new-york-city-salsas-that-are-better-than-pace/ (it's not worthwhile excerpting, just the fact it exists shows there are salsas made in New York).

While at the time of the commercial (1989), Pace Foods was an independent company based in San Antonio, Texas, in 1995 it was acquired by the Campbell Soup Company based in Camden, New Jersey. Being a large corporation with a multinational supply chain, it is hard to know where Pace salsas are actually manufactured today.

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  • This is a fantastic and well researched answer. Jun 18 '21 at 3:13
  • This is a good answer, but being better than Pace is not a big deal. And no, salsa is not necessarily tomatoes, peppers, and onions. One of the five jars of salsa in my cupboard has only two of those ingredients. It has fresh green chiles, onions, roasted green chiles, vinegar, jalapeños, green peppers, salt, garlic, and various spices. Another has green chile peppers, tomatillos, garlic, garlic salt, lime juice, parsley, and black pepper. Not a spec of tomato in the former, and not a spec of tomato or onion in the latter. Jun 18 '21 at 4:15
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    I can take you to dozens and dozens and dozens of Mexican and Tex-Mex restaurants that have far better salsa than Pace. A Mexican or Tex-Mex restaurant in Texas that served Pace (or any other store-bought salsa) as their salsa would quickly get a very bad reputation. Restaurant salsas in Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona are supposed to have a homemade taste and zing. We can taste store-bought here. I do recall one Tex-Mex restaurant whose salsa had the very distinctive flavor of tomato soup as its base. That restaurant did not last long. The owners were probably from NYC. Jun 18 '21 at 4:32
  • @DavidHammen Did you know that New Yorkites were the first to name their trash "garbage" after their similarly looking meal called a "garbage plate". Jun 18 '21 at 14:56

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