Skip Lott started Montibella Sausage Co. in 1986 (“Monitbella” means beautiful mountain in Italian, and is named for Mt. Diablo.)
Skip Lott was the prototypical male college student. He spent fleeting moments in the kitchen of his campus apartment, cooking up whatever it is college kids eat. The recipe for one of Lott’s concoctions was a mixutre of potatoes and ground pork. Lott would precook the potatoes and season them with parsley and garlic. Lott knew he had something special on his hands when his college buddies at the University of Santa Barbara took a liking to his meat-and-spuds creation.
Almost 20 years later, Lott’s special concoction landed him in the meat industry as owner of Orinda, California based Montibella Sausage Co., manufacturer of gourmet, potato-based, low-fat sausages.
In the confines of his kitchen-transformed-into-home-economics lab, Lott noticed that red and white potatoes acted as natural binders when cooked with ground pork. There was also less fat and grease, and more taste and moisture, he claims.
A few years later, Lott was working as bar manager for Oakland, California based Rapallo Restaurant. The food establishment’s reputable chef, Karen Lucas, tastetested Lott’s specialty and told him to stuff it — in casing, that is, and sell it. The restaurant went as far as to permanently place the product on its menu. And thus, Montibella Sausage Company was born.