“Hallowed be thy pain” says today’s offering – A member of Doctor Burnorium’s ever-popular Psycho Juice line.
But this isn’t his 70% Scorpion, or even anything designed for fire over flavour, this is his Roasted Garlic Ghost. A sauce I bought as a bit of shameless self-indulgence.
Sure, it calls itself “killer hot” and it definitely has the look of something meant to hurt but that’s the same across the whole range. As is his crazy self-caricature and the repetition of his slogan across the heat shrink wrapping.
It’s a beautiful bottle, with its ornate-looking design only made more so by the small metallic highlights, yet it says very little that’s unique to this one sauce.
In fact, the one thing that separates it from the rest of his range is the colour. A pale yellow that I would guess is supposed to be reminiscent of the garlic inside.
The ingredient that I bought it for.
Because, even if it isn’t as wildly different as some of the other stuff I’ve looked at, that roasted garlic content promised an excellent flavour.
Rich, slightly sweet, bordering on caramelised, with a lot of pungency and maybe just a hint of smoke. Combine that with one of my favourite chillies for a slightly milder, rather more flavour-focused ghost pepper sauce and I was expecting to have my socks knocked off by today’s review item.
Just, perhaps not in the way that I actually did.
When I poured this chunky beast onto my spoon, I had no idea what I was in for. I was hiccuping like crazy. It was the hottest ghost pepper sauce that I’d ever had, with a whopping
well beyond the four or four and a half that I’d been expecting.
It was not the tasty, slightly milder sort of every day ghost sauce that I was looking for and, as I discovered when the front of my mouth finally stopped throbbing, even smaller quantities didn’t let me taste the garlic in it.
So I had a quick look at the ingredients and here’s what I found:
Roasted Naga Jolokia (Ghost Pepper) 60%, Water, Habanero 10%, Onion, Garlic 6%, Cane Vinegar, Salt, Lemon Juice, Ascorbic Acid, Xanthan Gum
So, even in one of his more flavour-based sauces, Doctor Burnorium couldn’t bring himself to use less than 70% chilli. And, contrary to what the name would imply, this product uses roasted ghosts, not just roasted garlic.
In fact, I can’t even tell if the garlic has been roasted or not because, while 6% may be on the high side for a sauce that doesn’t sell itself on the garlic flavour, it’s not nearly enough for one that does. I can barely taste it at all.
To me, this sauce just tastes like a lightly charred, very acidic, highly fierce, ghost pepper one.
And that isn’t bad, per se. It’s just not what I wanted. Not what it was marketed as.
There are people who would love such a sauce but, even to them, I’m not sure that I’d recommend it. Why go for a 60% ghost and 10% habanero sauce if all you want is shockingly hot ghost pepper?
When the very same company offers a 70% ghost version, surely that’s the better option for those people?
And, for the extra crazy heat seekers, there’s even a 70% scorpion one or a ghost one with extract added.
This particular sauce doesn’t seem to have much place alongside the rest of the Psycho Juice range.
I would, however, be interested in trying some of the others to see how they compare to my scale’s top end.