Yet Bunsters’ Black Label was a number seven on the show and today we’re looking at a full on nine. One of the hottest sauces to ever be made with the current range of record-level chillies.
This is Dingo Sauce Co.’s Widow Maker. A condiment claimed to be fifteen out of ten on the company’s own scale. But I did also pick up a nice six, for those of you who might find that intimidating.
A more medium heat, smoked sriracha, if its label is to be believed.
That label is quite minimalist, however. Transparent with a white logo over the front and only an inch of actual info, down the bottom. So there really isn’t much to set the two apart, visually. Only a black or red block of colour, behind the heat rating.
With that in mind and how extremely out of the way the names are, I feel like it could be very easy to mix these two sauces up, on a shelf. Yet you’ll never have that problem, here in the UK, because they’re only available online.
And, as much as that difficulty in distinguishing them does bother me, the thin white text of the company logo, arranged into a circle and topped with a dingo silhouette, does look most professional. Especially with all of the transparency around it.
So I don’t hate these labels. I just think that they could do a little more to sell the sauces, rather than the company.
Now, let’s give our first a go, shall we?
This one’s the Widow Maker – The extreme heat product of the pair – and it’s a thick, shred-filled, slightly orangeish, brownish, brickish red. A little lighter than I’m used to but otherwise very much what I’d expect of such a pure chilli product. And its flavour follows suit.
Its chillies are a blend of carolina reapers, naga vipers, ghosts, 7-pots and two different types of scorpion but they’re all red superhots and they all taste like such. With perhaps just a little extra in the way of vibrant, fruity notes. Or that might simply be the vast quantity of lime.
Because yes, this sauce smells of citrus and it tastes of it even more. Possessing both a serious acid hit and a good deal of lime zest. Flavours which work well with the subtle orange qualities of the trinidadian peppers, as well as their sharp, throaty heat.
One which makes me hiccup profusely, from its sheer intensity, but still doesn’t have quite the same savage feel of the Somerset Chilli Co.’s roasted reaper sauce. Even if its record-level
strength definitely makes it hit harder, over all.
And it stays with me, too, lingering for quite a while. Blazing away at the sides and base of my tongue, in addition to its major throat fire.
Yet that’s all that I can really say about this one. It’s lime and superhots with a serious, record-level sting. Not anything unique or, in my opinion, special enough to warrant its import. Though it’s far from bad and still worth trying, if you’re a fan of the show.
But how does their Smoked Sriracha compare? Can it hold its own without the hot ones connection?
There’s only one way for me to find out:
Well, maybe two, since the deep aroma of smoke and ketchup-y undertones, wafting up as I fill my spoon, have me salivating long before my first mouthful.
This sauce smells delicious and pours so well, with the smooth consistency and ultra-fine grains of a top-notch sriracha. Albeit rather less sticky than that genre or its ketchup-y scent might imply.
There’s less sugar in this sriracha than most others and, when I finally touch it to my tongue, the difference that that makes is obvious.
The taste of this sauce is pepper forward. A blend of ever so slightly fruity red chillies, consisting of red jalapeños and a newer strain, called “caysan”. With undertones of the hickory and applewood, in which they were smoked, coming through underneath. Alongside subtler undercurrents of garlic and sweetness.
Yet none of that sweetness is from the peppers, themselves. All of their natural sugars seem to have been fermented away, leaving behind a clear void. One which registers as bitterness and, sadly, isn’t completely counteracted by the extra sugar that was added during cooking.
Which is a shame because I do really enjoy that mild red chilli flavour and the way in which the earthier applewood masks the more abrasive edge of the hickory smoke. Letting its fuller body shine through.
There’s a lot to love here, despite the simplicity of the sauce, and that bitterness doesn’t ruin it completely. Especially as it’s far less noticeable on food. Yet I do find it a little harder to slather my pepperoni pizza, noodles, meats and macaroni cheese in this than in other, otherwise similar items.
Which, in turn, makes the low
heat in the back of my throat, after I swallow, quite hard for me to appreciate.
So, realistically speaking, I don’t think that I can recommend Dingo Sauce Co.’s Smoked Sriracha to anyone with a high chilli tolerance. But, if you just want a little bit to accent a meal, it’s got some really tasty undertones to give. And it’s a lot more special than their Widow Maker.
Here’s what went into it:
Chilli (75%), Sugar, Vinegar, Garlic, Salt.
And here are the ingredients for today’s first sauce:
Chilli, Cider Vinegar, Brown Sugar, Lime, Garlic, Salt.
Two lists which look almost identical, until you read up on them online.
For the smoked sriracha, those chillies are caysan and smoked red jalapeño, while the Widow Maker uses carolina reaper, ghost pepper, moruga scorpion, butch T, naga viper and some kind of 7-pot/pod. They could hardly be more different.