A Chat With Valerie Trask About The Sansaire Delta

This week Sansaire launched a Kickstarter for their second generation sous vide circulator, their first WiFi powered sous vide device. I wrote about it for Forbes here, but also asked Valerie Trask, the COO, a few questions about the device. 

Sansaire's Valerie Trask

Sansaire's Valerie Trask

You guys were fairly early in the consumer sous vide market since you launched your first Kickstarter in 2013. How has the market around consumer sous vide changed in the last 3 years?

Trask: The sous vide market is almost unrecognizable compared to our first product launch in 2013 when sous vide was an insider secret. If you wanted one, you’d have to either drop ~$1,000 on a restaurant grade device or make your own. Today, there’s a broad spectrum of devices – consumers can be selective about what’s important to them and can stroll into a Sur La Table or Williams-Sonoma to easily pick up a stylish sous vide cooker – that’s a huge market shift. 

On a personal level, it’s been incredible to experience this evolution through social interaction; I used to go to a party and anticipate five minutes as a response to the standard ‘what do you do’ question. Today, many people know sous vide and they’re asking better questions. That’s a really fun three-year evolution.

The device looks smaller, more compact. What other changes did you make from a hardware design with the Delta compared to your first generation Sansaire?

Trask: In addition to the smaller and more compact design, we added a touch screen to the face of the Delta where users can select preferences as well as set cook time and temperature. For as much as things have changed in past three years, most people still like to have the option to cook without using their phones.

We also moved the sous vide to the front of the pot, which stylistically helps transform an ordinary pot into a sleek cooking device. 

Your suggested retail price is slightly higher ($249) than what we are seeing from ChefSteps and Anova for WiFi sous vide cookers ($199). Why the higher price point?

Trask: Sansaire believes that making a great product is a lot like making an incredible meal – ingredients are so critical. We’ve invested in the most quality materials and added a touch-screen interface for the most seamless user experience. We also hold ourselves accountable for having higher voltage, being quieter, and being stylish enough to justify space in your kitchen. For now, that translates to a slightly higher MSRP, but if we’re able to reduce cost while maintaining quality, we will.  

What lessons did you learn from your first Kickstarter that you are applying this time around?

Trask: In the last campaign and over the past several years on the market we’ve come to realize that our Kickstarter backers are some of the most incredible and loyal supporters. When thinking through this campaign, they were always top of mind, and we’re really happy to be back on the same platform bringing it to that audience first. 

It’s also been really interesting to see how Kickstarter has evolved in the past three years: some of the rules are different. It’s more crowded and as a result, it’s more competitive. Despite all of this, it’s still such an incredible platform and we love that it gives the little guys a shot at getting something on the market.   

Since this is your first connected sous vide circulator, you are able to bring an app to drive the experience. Explain the app and what the plans are for it long term (guided cooking, etc)?

Trask: The app has been a long time coming. Sous vide is such a fabulous cooking method but finding times, temperatures, and recipes can be a real hunt; remedying that has been our top priority. We also streamlined the middle step of manually setting your device to those cook times and temperatures and made it easier to keep track of cooking status and monitoring water levels. We still have a long list of cool features that we’re eager to add in the future.

- Michael Wolf

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