Spicy Week II: Eclectic

Yes, today was supposed to be XXX.

Yes, I know I’ve changed the order.

You do not know what my body has gone through in the last 24 hours.
If there is any poster child for body autonomy, it is me, right now, lacking autonomy from my own body.
Holy crap, I kid you not.

All that aside, I’ve decided to treat myself to the most exciting and diverse selection of the sauces before I subject various friends and family members to the insanely hot ones on my trip home tomorrow. Today won’t put me completely out of the woods- I’m trying sauces with ingredients from avocado to salted caramel, to top-notch political preferences to pumpkin. Whew.

Also, someone sent me a holster, which means that now that my first semester is officially done, I’ve spent every minute of the last 24 hours pretending to be Doc Holliday. I’m your huckleberry.

Sauce count: 18 (and five non-sauce goodies!)
Sauce total: 73 DSC_7102-001

Muley Bill’s Tabasco Holster: Technically, this isn’t a hot sauce, so I can’t review it with the same numerical system. However, if you haven’t purchased any holiday gifts yet, please get this. It’s a hot sauce holster. It’s beautifully made, with clear and aesthetically pleasing stamping along the border.DSC_7098-001
A Dream of Chocolate Angry Bee: This was a fine chocolate bar, if a little sweet for my tastes. The caramel-heavy milk chocolate blend was studded with large chunks of burnt honey candy, a clever ingredient. The habanero sneaked up on me and made my eyes tear up. Phenomenal bar. 8/10
A Dream of Chocolate Hellfire: This bar started awfully innocuously, with a pleasant salted pumpkin seed crunch. At the end of the bite, the back of my throat was numb and I was panting. Masterful usage of ghost pepper and the chocolate blend was rich and woodsy. 7/10 DSC_7091-001
FireDragon LoveSauce: The manufacturers requested we not test this on McNuggets due to its sophisticated flavor. However, we found that, given its Latin influences, it went very well with Brazilian coxinha, or fried chicken bites. Very, very heavy on ginger and tequila. The heat is lingering and pleasantly pervasive, but the booziness renders it sharp. It’s clearly made from fine ingredients, but it isn’t a very versatile sauce. 6.5/10DSC_7094-001
Rocky’s Barbecue Hot Sauce: Definitely the best barbecue-based sauce. It begs to be slathered across hot wings. Excellent balance, and a great buttery heat. 8.5/10
Sizzlin’ Sauces Creepin’ Quag: Sweet, sweet mulled berry and fruit flavors. Definitely a nice citrus and ripe plum note. 7/10
Firefly Cosmic Curry: For a curry flavor, the heat and spices dissipate almost immediately. The first few seconds are delicious, but then it just goes away. 4/10
Deadwood Taco Sauce: Definitely has that cumin-taco sauce base. Unfortunately, doesn’t taste much different from the taco sauce you’d get in kits. 4/10DSC_7092-001
Habacado: Very gentle, mild flavor. The pepper and avocado blend into each other. Neither flavor is very bold. 5/10
All Spice Cafe Sweet Chili Popcorn: Heat creeps up- otherwise, it tastes like normal kettle corn. Really yummy, and the flavor grows with each bite. Used very high-quality popcorn. 8/10DSC_7099-001
All Spice Cafe Sweet Habanero Popcorn: Excellent, deep, rich heat. Crispy and crunchy with a great, sweet flavor. 9/10
Owem G. Williker’s Toasted Marshmallow and Dark Chocolate Formula: Less offensive than the first, though only marginally. Decent chocolate and marshmallow flavor, but no heat. 4/10 
Owem G. Williker’s Salted Caramel and White Chocolate Formula: Tastes like overripe bananas and lip gloss, with a waxy finish. No salt. No caramel. 2/10
Defcon Habby Horseradish Hot: Weird logo, but excellent burn and sour-sweet horseradish. Definitely a winner for future matzo ball inclusion…7/10
Sunshine Sauces Jamaican Jerk: The strongest jerk flavor, but unbalanced with the chipotle. The two flavors didn’t really go well together and clashed. 3/10
DSC_7087-001Co-op Jack O’ Lantern: Back-of-the-throat heat, decent pumpkin flavor. Pure balance between fruit and heat, with no strange spices or additional flavors. 7.5/10
El Verde Sucio Poblano and Green Olive Vinaegrette: Nice texture, decent heat. Good green olive flavor. 5/10
Start! Hot Curry Sauce: Excellent curry flavor- intense, concentrated spice with a smooth texture. Lends itself well to the chicken without overpowering the flavors. 9/10
Haute and Heirloom Sriracha-Bourbon Caramel: Not as much heat as I’d have liked, although the balance was excellent. Fantastic texture, like a perfect caramel sauce. 6/10DSC_7088-001
Razing Cane’s Garlic Relish: Has a soy and garlic-heavy flavor, like really good Chinese food. Excellent flavors and a subtle heat. 7/10
NW Elixirs Hott Smoke: More basic than the Hott version. Tastes like good, well-seasoned barbecue chips, but not very spicy at all. 5/10
Fare Isle Farm Nantucket Fire Cider: Nuanced spices- strong ginger flavor, but probably not well-suited to chicken. Alone, it was tasty and concentrated. Not the best fire cider we’ve had. 5/10
HotMaple Smokey Habanero: Not very smoky, but fresh and very hot- more garlic and savory based than maple sweetness. It smells more like maple than anything else. 6/10

Well, we didn’t know what to expect with this bunch! It was a great tasting with K and the Bedfellow, though, and we ended up panting our way through half a pint of ice cream, as well as McNuggets. Ultimately, we had three winners- one by a nose! Rocky’s Barbecue, Start! Curry Sauce, and the dark horse of the bunch, All Spice Cafe’s Sweet Habanero Popcorn won this round. Definitely the coolest tasting thus far.

Thanks again for all the nuggets, McDonald’s! I’m pretty sure they’re showing up in my dreams now. Nugget sauce count: 12 packets of assorted goodness.

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