“He ordered the souvlaki with hot sauce,”my friend informed me.  “His nose bled all night!”

“All night?”  I was dubious.

“All night!”she insisted.

I suppose it was intended as a cautionary tale but the first thought that entered my mind was: “I’ve got to try that hot sauce.”

I’ve always been a fan of spicy.  One of the first Japanese phrases I learned before going to Tokyo for the first time was “Karai no ryori wa dai suki desu” (“I love spicy food!”) lest they fear offending an overly sensitive gaikokujin palate.  When I go out for pad gra prow, I dismiss foreigner (farang) spicy in favor of Thai (phet mak mak) spicy.  Hell, I’ve even started making my own hot sauces.

But even though I like the heat, I am picky.  I’m not a huge fan of the tamer cayenne-based hot sauces only because I tend to find them too vinegary.  The beyond hot sauces are certainly hot, but their flavor is akin to liquid rubber.  Give me an island hot sauce, something with a habanero or scotch bonnet base. Incorporate onions and garlic for flavor, the sweetness of fruit to compliment the heat, maybe even a touch of mustard to give it an extra little kick.

The other day, Akemi took all of my hot sauces out of the back cupboard and suggested I deal with them – which essentially means toss them or consume them in six weeks I have left in Vancouver.  Well, I’m up to the challenge!  But first, a little sample to find out if they’ve stood the test of time (aka – haven’t gone bad sitting in the pantry since 2010).

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

I remember the first time I sampled this one – just a touch on the end of a dipped toothpick.  It was pretty intense.  A friend of Akemi tested his luck and started hiccuping instantly.  More of a novelty than a worthy addition to the rotation.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

Hmmm.  Just the basics here: cayenne, water, and salt.  The years have not been kind to this hot sauce which went from its original vibrant orange to an ominous dark brown.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

This one comes with a (presumably tongue in cheek) warning not to attempt to actually light the fuse.  The wax seal, while amusing, is surprisingly thick and difficult to cut through.  It’s a combination of some 20 peppers and not unbearable in its heat level.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

Unlike this one that is aptly termed “Beyond Insanity” because you’d have to be crazy to eat it.  It’s habanero-based sauce but also includes “habanero-infused flavor”, whatever that means.  Another one that has aged terribly, at least in its coloring.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

Also habanero-based and while this one seemed to have prevailed over Father Time, the flavor seemed a bit…off.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

Vidalia onions and peach!  I am IN!  To be honest, I haven’t had the heart to open this one yet simply because I don’t want to be disappointed if it’s turned and I’m unable to use it.  Jeff, I’m waiting for you to get into town before I try it.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

My new favorite hot sauce (now that I can no longer track down my former fave, Chalido Chile Trader’s Besos de Fuegos) is this little gem made right here in B.C. with locally-sourced honey and apples.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

I’m love the island sauces.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

And, of course, who can resist the sweet and spicy combo of Korean gochujang.  I pick up mine up at my local farmer’s market.

July 16, 2017: I Like It Spicy!

And speaking of local, Oddball Organics makes a terrific line of sauces that combine two of my favorite things: heat and garlic.  From left to right, their progressively hotter offerings go from Nasty Nectar to Nuclear Nectar to Tongue Twister.

Oh, and that nose-bleedingly hot hot sauce?  It wasn’t that hot.  And my nose was just fine.

18 thoughts on “July 16, 2017: I like it spicy!

  1. I like some of the bottles, the artwork, and the packaging. Too bad some of them went bad. Enjoy but try not to overdo it 🙂

  2. Wow, that’s a lot of hot sauce! We’re planning on downsizing in about 3 years, and I’ve already started on my hubby for his assorted piles. I may use her phrase for the next one.

  3. This is why I change countries every 6-8 years. I get to throw everything out and start fresh (At least, that’s what I tell myself. It has nothing to do with needing a hazmat suit to go near the stuff. Honest!)

    Here’s the hot sauce from a local Mexican restaurant. I haven’t tried it but I hope it’s aptly named:


  4. Joe, do you mean Cálido Chile Traders? I did a little Googling; looks like it’s no longer in business.

  5. My favorite hot sauce is from a place called Jimboy’s Tacos. Not too hot, but I love the flavor of it. I always grab a few extra packets of hot sauce for the road.

    For commercial hot sauce, I tend to stick to either Pico Pica or Sriracha.

  6. I agree with Debra, you are insane! My idea of a spice is salt & pepper, maybe a little garlic. I’m as mild as mild can be. I actually clarify when ordering “no spice extra mild” when I eat Thai or Mexican.

    Hope you enjoy emptying out the edible ones!

  7. Le dernier épisode (vendredi le 14 juillet) mon épouse avait deviné le punch mais on s’est fait quand même avoir! Boy, il fallait suivre sinon on était mêlé…

  8. Kuhn put Thai mai? Try Pom gin petkwa kohn Thai, dia ging ging. That will get the conversation going, plus some laughs. Of course I had a pepper plant growing out side my house and occasionally pick a pepper off and chew it to impress my students. Of course they would say I was crazy. But I don’t do habanero or ghost peppers. I have my limits. Somtam with fresh chillies is a must.

  9. Debra: 😆

    JeffW‘s going to visit you? I heard he was heading up there. Now that’s one man who’s schedule is crazier than yours! Have fun!

    Line Noise: Genius name! Let us know how it is, please.

  10. My husband loves hot hot hot sauce. Last year I had to be on a bland diet, so now even sweet chili Doritos are kicking my ass. I am working my way back up from Herdez salsa verde, which is not hot at all. Sigh.

    Peaches and Vidalia onions? I may be in for that, yum.

  11. Killjoys – 638k, 0.17 18-49
    Dark Matter – 568k, 0.15 18-49
    Wynonna Earp – 496k, 0.13 18-49

    Dark Matter is steady this season. Seven episodes in and the shows audience has held firm.

  12. My Jeff loves hot sauce. I cannot do any hot sauce. I’d be in an emergency room.

    I don’t envy your task of clean-out. We’re doing a little bit of that right now as we lost two huge armoires where we stored everything. Well we didn’t lose them. We gave them to Habitat for Humanity as they didn’t fit in our livingroom anymore now that Jeff has his new TV which meant a new couch, which meant….you get the idea. Everything has revolved around this new TV since the beginning of June. It’s the reason for the electrician visits. The three electrician visits. And DirecTV to come out and give us a new dish. And an audio guy to come out and set that up. Now we have stuff all over our house to go through plus the 18 boxes stacked in my bedroom from when we had our floor flooded by the washer repairman and had to get new flooring. Yep. I’ve had zero time to take care of that either. I still have not started my tax return which I got an extension for in Turbo Tax (due Oct 15).

    It’s always something.

  13. I’m a wuss when it comes to spicy hot stuff – sweet chilli sauce is really pushing the boat out for me!
    However I have discovered, purely out of scientific curiosity you understand, that my furballs appear to have a stronger constitution. My cat, Ursa is the champion. There’s nothing so far, she hasn’t refused…

  14. Dang,,,a man after my own heart,,,I eat raw jalapenos as a treat,,,the hottest sauce I ever tasted was in 1961,,,my Dads friend was a physician from India,,,his nurse wife made her own sauce a couple of ounces at a tme,,,It tasted great going in my mouth,,,going down though required flushing with milk…dang it was good…

  15. I put siracha on my salads to zest them up so my taste buds are good with super spicy. Okay I put siracha on everything. Hot sauces just don’t last, but there are always new bottles to be discovered.

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