Interview with the Team behind La Dulce Vapor Company
A Spinfuel eLiquid Review Team Interview
SPINFUEL: Welcome to the pages of Spinfuel. We’ve been looking forward to talking to you. Would you like to introduce yourselves to our readers?
Yes! First, I would like to thank you for reviewing our juice and allowing us to get to know the customers that we hope will enjoy our product. My name is Matt Lashlee and I started this company with my partner Zac Gnadinger. We were College roommates at Lindsey Wilson College where I played baseball and he was a wrestler and ran track. We instantly hit it off and knew we had to become business partners. I majored in business and have had a passion for it since early in my life. Zac is the artist behind the juice line and so the juice was crafted by him and he views them as kind of
as his “babies”. After a few months of setting this company up we decided we needed help with how to handle our finances and so we brought in Tamee Lashlee as a partner to handle that aspect of the business. We work really well with each other and understand the strengths that each person brings to the table. The hard part is that Tamee and I live in Colorado, while Zac still lives in Kentucky. Although tough it might allow us to gain reward miles from airlines.
SPINFUEL: What position(s) do you hold in the company?
I (Matt Lashlee) am the Chief Executive Officer, Zac is the Chief Creative Officer, and Tamee is the Chief Operating Officer.
SPINFUEL: Getting down to business; who or what inspired you to get into the e-juice business? When was that?
Well, if we are being honest, we were looking for some way to get into business together. We went
through a lot of really bad ideas, I mean really bad. Zac had been making his own juice for a long time since he quit smoking because he was a broke college student and it was cheaper to make. I tried the flavors he had and loved them. As we were brainstorming ideas on what business to open, Zac finally came out and said, “We are making juice.” I didn’t fight it and he went to work perfecting our line. This was our 9 months ago and so it has been a long process, but we are happy with how it turned out.
SPINFUEL: Where are you located? More importantly, do you sell online or in retail stores, or perhaps both?
Although we live in both Colorado and Kentucky, we are based out of Colorado. We do not currently sell online but are looking to partner with someone to be able to get our products to people all over the country. As of now we only sell to retail stores and distributors. We are also working to gather global support and ship internationally to retail stores and distributors.
SPINFUEL: When you launched your company how did you decide on your first flavor or “set” of Four flavors?
As we started to perfect the flavors, we worked on a totally different set of flavors. They were not what we were looking for and there were a lot of similar flavors on the market. When we changed our flavors we decided on a candy line because it is a category of flavors that we were looking for to vape and could not find. We saw a gap in flavors and wanted to give consumers candy flavors that they recognized.
SPINFUEL: How would you describe your signature?
I feel that our signature is that we want to bring recognizable flavors that are subtle and allow vapors to use all day without getting sick of the flavor.
SPINFUEL: We steep all the eLiquids we receive for review purposes, even if we’re told there is no need to do so. Do you steep your eLiquids before they are shipped to customers?
We do not steep our product before we ship out, but our product is made at a manufacturer so the juice has time to steep while it awaits bottling and while it ships to Colorado. I would say it has 2 weeks to steep before we actually ship them to retail stores. We have allowed flavors to sit for 2 months and found that the flavor stays consistent over time.
SPINFUEL: There is a lot of concern these days about how and where eLiquids are being made. Do you have any thoughts on that?
Well we were as concerned as consumers about the safety of our product and the sustainability of our brand. This is why we chose to use a manufacturer in California. This manufacturer is highly reputable and has all the ISO testing that will provide our customers with the peace of mind that there product is made is a safe sterile environment.
Safety is a huge priority to us as well and so that is why we chose to go with a manufacturer. Not only did we go with a manufacturer, we went with a large manufacturer that produces a lot of the largest juice companies out there. They do all the tests on the juice and flavors so that we and the consumer know they are safe.
SPINFUEL: Do you have a specific audience in mind for your eLiquids? They seem to be blended for dripping or subohm coils, do you think this is where the future is headed, to the High VG vaper?
We use an 80 VG 20 PG blend in our juices. We saw the trend of tanks coming into the industry and so we wanted to produce a juice that would be good for both tanks and drippers. I use a box mod and tank and Zac is a dripper. We have found that our juice works excellent for both devices.
SPINFUEL: What types of hardware do you use when testing your liquids? Is there any specific hardware that provides the best ‘vape’ for your eLiquids?
We like to test our juice on a few different devices. I use a Snow Wolf 200w with a Smok TFV4 as a tank. When I want to drip I use either my Mod Fuel or Thundercloud RDA. As for my coils I use 24 gauge nichrome and the flavor come out very well off of these coils. Zac uses a Fujin mod with a Twisted Messes RDA. This allows us to make sure our juice works across several devices.
SPINFUEL: Does nicotine levels affect the flavor of your eliquids?
We wanted a less “harsh” juice when it comes to our highest nicotine level (6mg). This allows our flavor to pop more and so the flavor has no significant change depending on the nicotine level.
SPINFUEL: You have a wholesale program since you do not sell direct to consumers. How do vendors contact you to inquire about selling your brand in their shop or website?
As of now we have strictly a wholesale program. We love working with stores and if anyone is looking to contact me or has any questions then they can reach me at email@example.com.
SPINFUEL: Have you attended many vape expos or conventions? Will you have a booth in any future events?
Our first convention was this month in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Since it was our first event we did not have a booth. We wanted to take in the convention scene and know how we can put on a good booth for future events. It was a blast and we made a lot of good connections and met a lot of good people.
SPINFUEL: Were any of you a smoker before you switched to vaping? If so, what made you decide to quit smoking?
Zac was a smoker and I was a dipper. I was a baseball player so it comes with the territory. We both wanted to quit for health reasons. Also, once I tried vaping, the flavors were so much more appealing than that of dip.
SPINFUEL: What type (and/or brand) of eCigarette did you use to break away from analogs?
I (Matt Lashlee) started with the ego one. It was a good little device and was user friendly to help me learn the basics. When Zac first switched to vaping he started on a clearomizer tank with an ego battery.
SPINFUEL: How long did it take to completely leave analogs behind?
I (Matt Lashlee) still have some cravings for dip and give into my cravings on occasion. When I have a dip in, I find it disgusting and throw it out and start vaping. I have been off dip consistently for around three months. Zac has been completely of analogs for a year now.
SPINFUEL: How often do you vape? How many hours per day?
Zac is vaping most of the time I see him. He always has his device on him. I Vape pretty often and “have” to vape after I eat. This is when I crave dip the most.
SPINFUEL: Do you have a “favorite” flavor? What is your favorite category of eLiquids for your personal vaping? Fruity, tobacco-based, sweet, and so forth?
Personally, I love the candy and fruity flavors. I love all four of our flavors and they are the flavors that I vape the majority of the time. If I were to pick a flavor that is not ours, then I would say my favorite flavor is Good Vibes, by Smax.
SPINFUEL: All 4 of your blends are excellent All Day Vapes. What makes a good all-day-vape eLiquid?
I think the most important part of an all-day-vape is to have a subtle flavor that does not over power. It allows to avoid “Vape Tongue” and doesn’t bother the stomach like a rich, powerful, and perfume flavor does.
SPINFUEL: Where do you think the ecigarette industry is headed? Do you have any predictions on the upcoming FDA regulations?
This is a very hard question because of the unpredictability of the FDA. I know that big tobacco and state governments are trying to push the vaping industry out because we are pulling market share from them. I know that money can influence a lot and it is concerning when we are going to battle with the kind of money that big tobacco has. I do agree that regulations should be put on juice to protect the safety of the consumer. That juice needs to be manufactured in labs so that consumers know where their juice is being made. I know that Vaping saves lives and it is hard to see the government trying to kill it. If we as vapors want to keep this life saving product then we need to make a stand and speak out as a unit. As a unit we have a lot more power than most people think.
SPINFUEL: Why should our readers buy their e-juice from you?
I do not want to do a lot of speaking because I think that our product will speak for itself. We are company that is not into fooling the consumer or manipulating them. We put out good subtle flavors. We wanted to build a brand and logo that people would love. We want to connect with our consumers and we want them to know who we are.
SPINFUEL: Good answer, we subscribe to same philosophy. Are you working on any new flavors right now? Do you have an idea on the ideal number of flavors for your brand, or is it a matter of being inspired to create a new flavor?
We are working on flavors as we speak. We will come out with a new flavor for every season that will only be able for that season. This will add new flavors without saturating our brand. These seasonal flavors will come with a cool addition and consumers will just have to wait to see what it is. I think the ideal number is 4 with the new seasonal flavors that we are bringing out.
SPINFUEL: Is there anything else you’d like to say to our readers while you have their complete attention?
Once again thanks for allowing us to tell people about our brand. the last thing that I will say is that we have a Podcast. As young entrepreneurs we are going into this blind and we wanted to give others our age some knowledge about what to expect. Not only does this try and show young people what to expect as its happening, it allows customers to learn who we are and what we stand for as a brand. The name of the Podcast is “How to build and empire on a taco.” It is available on iTunes.
I know a lot of companies say this, but customer service is number one to us. We want to build relationships with everyone that uses our product or buys from us. That is why if a customer or store ever wants to talk to me they can easily find my email address.
SPINFUEL: I can’t thank you enough for talking with us today, We really enjoyed your eLiquids and we look forward seeing what lies ahead for La Dulce Vapor Company.