Worcestershire sauce (pronounced /ˈwʊstəˌʃɪər/) or English sauce is a widely used fermented liquid condiment first made at 68 Broad Street, Worcester by two dispensing chemists, John Wheeley Lea and William Henry Perrins. It was made commercially in 1837, and remains the only Worcestershire Sauce still to be made in the UK. In 1930 the business was sold to HP Foods and was subsequently acquired by the H.J. Heinz Company when they acquired that business from Groupe Danone in 2005.
The product is made and bottled in the Midlands Road factory in Worcester, which has been the home of Lea & Perrins since 16th October 1897.
The H. J. Heinz Company, which now manufactures "The Original Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce", under the name Lea & Perrins, Inc., lists the following ingredients on the label of a bottle produced in the United States: vinegar, molasses, high fructose corn syrup, anchovies, water, onions, salt, garlic, tamarind concentrate, cloves, natural flavorings and chili pepper extract.
The ingredients of a bottle of Worcestershire Sauce from England sold under the name "The Original & Genuine Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce" by Lea & Perrins, Limited, lists the following ingredients: malt vinegar (from barley), spirit vinegar, molasses, sugar, salt, anchovies, tamarind extract, onions, garlic, spice and flavouring.
It is a flavouring used in many dishes, both cooked and uncooked, and particularly with beef; and drinks, such as the Bloody Mary. Lea & Perrins supplies it in concentrate form to be bottled abroad.
Worcestershire sauce is referred to in South Africa and some parts of the US and most of the UK as Worcester sauce (pronounced /ˈwʊstə/), or spelled phonetically as Wuster sauce.
Though a fermented fish sauce called garum was a staple of Greco-Roman cuisine and of the Mediterranean economy of the Roman Empire, "Worcestershire sauce" is one of the many legacies of British contact with India. While some sources trace comparable fermented anchovy sauces in Europe to the 17th century, this one became popular in the 1840s.
Worcestershire sauce is often an ingredient of Caesar Salad and can be used as steak sauce.
Welsh rarebit is a combination of Caerphilly cheese, English mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and other ingredients, frequently eaten with bread, toast or crackers. A simpler version uses Worcestershire sauce with cheese on toast, with the sauce added to the plain version during the grilling process. Worcestershire sauce also plays a key role in the flavour of original recipe Chex Mix. In the U.K., advertising by Lea & Perrins has made Worcestershire Sauce popular for use on spaghetti bolognese, beans on toast, cheese on toast, chips, gravy and sausages. It is also frequently used in chili con carne, Bloody Mary cocktails, and in a cocktail known mostly to Canadians called a Caesar.
Worcestershire sauce, known as salsa inglesa (English sauce) in Spanish, is an essential ingredient of the popular Mexican beer cocktail, the Michelada. It is also a key ingredient, besides lemon juice, in the marinade of Peruvian ceviche. People also use it to flavour cheeseburgers. In Mexico, it is often used on pizza.
Finally, it is nearly universally available as a condiment in steakhouses throughout North America, and is also sometimes used as a condiment for hamburgers, pork chops, chicken, and certain other meats and fish.
Certain brands of crisp sell Worcestershire sauce flavour crisps, usually in purple packets.