Neasden man and Nando’s in peri-peri battle

Family recipe for peri-peri sauce could see him hauled before the courts

A battle has been declared between a popular restaurant chain and a Neasden man who has launched his own peri-peri sauce in memory of his parents.

Ndinos Criticos created the Portuguese dressing after being taught the secret recipe by his mother, Maria, and father Harry, who both died last year.

Ndinos Original Peri-Peri Sauce now flies off the shelves for �2.50 a bottle but restaurant chain Nando’s claim the product is too similiar to its own.

However, Mr Criticos, 35, of The Circle, Neasden, said: “I’m not backing down. It’s game on.

“My father would never have backed down. And I don’t intend to.

“I wont be bullied by this. Ndinos my name. It is on my birth certificate, passport and my bank details.”

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South African born Mr Criticos was told by his mother, also from South Africa and father, a Greek Cypriot, never to divulge the secret ingredients that go into the tasty condiment which has been passed down from generation to generation.

The chilli-based sauce, which has won a Gold Taste Award, is now bottled in a kitchen in Park Royal before it is sold in shops and restaurants including The Regent pub, in Regent Street, Kensal Rise, and Rio Grande, in High Road, Willesden.

He said: “Last year I lost both my parents. This is helping me to cope with their deaths and is a tribute to my parents.

“I wish they were here to see how well the sauce is doing. They would be so proud.”

Mr Criticos also hopes to expand the enterprise. He said: “My dream is to continue building up the business for my dad and to be successful.

“We would like to be a beacon of hope for small buisnesses struggling in tough times.

“I’m just a regular Joe trying to do a job. We are in for a big fight and we will take them on.”

A spokesman for Nando’s said: “Mr Criticos has applied to register, as a trade mark, the word Ndinos in red font for peri-peri sauces and condiments.

“We feel it is too similar to our well known registered trademarks Nando’s and Nandino’s.

“We are awaiting a decision from the Intellectual Property Office.”

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