I recently bought two new hot sauces that I thought might be interesting; Virginia Gentlemen Bourbon Chipotle Hot Sauce and Pain 85% by Juan Specialty Foods. Coincidentally, they both come in flask shaped bottles. So, it seemed appropriate to share this hot sauce review between the two of them.
VG 80 proof Bourbon Chipotle Hot Sauce
I had never tried a bourbon infused hot sauce before, so I was really excited to give this a taste. I really didn’t know what to expect, but I knew it would be something different.
I am not a big fan of bourbon as a drink, or as a mixer in a cocktail. Even still, I knew the other flavors in the sauce may diffuse the actual taste of the alcohol.
The ingredients listed on the bottle include: Peppers, Water, Salt, Garlic, Vinegar, Pepper Flakes, and Bourbon.
Surprisingly, the Virginia Gentlemen Bourbon Hot Sauce is actually pretty sweet, even though it does not contain and sweeteners. It also has an almost fruity, tangy taste.
I have tried it on a couple different types of food and haven’t really found anything I think it goes with. I have come to the conclusion that it would probably be best used as a BBQ Sauce for grilling. I have yet to try it for this, but I think that would be the only chance I might have of finding a tasty purpose for this sauce.
There is also a little bit of a taste that I guess I would describe as bitter, but I am hoping that may cook off if it was used as a glaze of sorts. Also, it has practically no heat. So, between the flavor and the lack of spice, I am really wondering why this was marketed as a hot sauce, when it seems to clearly be a BBQ sauce.
All in all, I am not impressed, and I wouldn’t recommend it for purchase. After I give it a try as a cooking sauce I will come back and update my findings, but I don’t have high hopes…sorry Virginia Gentlemen. The bottles claims it is “award winning”. I am wondering exactly what award it won.
I do like the flask shaped bottle. Especially since the sauce actually contains liquor.
Virginia Gentlemen Bourbon Chipotle Hot Sauce Ratings:
Heat Rating: ✮✮✮✮✮✮✮✮✮✮
Pain 85% Habanero Hot Sauce
According to the bottle, this company makes different percentage hot sauces. The higher the percentage, the hotter the sauce. So, at Pain 85% you would expect it to pack a pretty good punch.
It also admits that as the sauce gets hotter it may make the actual flavor decrease. But, as they mention, that is really up to personal taste and opinion.
This “100% Natural” hot sauce is distributed by Juan Specialty Foods out of Kansas City, KS. The ingredients include: Habanero Peppers, Water, Carrots, Garlic, Mustard, Vinegar, Onion Powder, Olive Oil, Lemon & Lime Juice Concentrate, and “Spices”.
That is quite an ingredient list! And although this hot sauce is actually pretty spicy, as the 85% proclaims, it still has a pretty great flavor. That is a fairly rare combination.
A Great Hot Sauce!
I definitely notice the heat more than the flavor, but if I try to focus on it, it actually tastes darn good!
Due to this hot sauce packing a nice punch, I have been going through the bottle slowly. I have mostly been using it to add a little extra heat to sauces that have bolder flavors, but lack the capsaicin levels I am wanting. However, I have used it on its own several times also.
All in all, I would say this is a great hot sauce! I am curious to try some of this brands other offerings. I will have to give the 100% a go…it might be a bit much for me, but I would surely give it a try! I put a link on here for the 85% and a 3 pack trio that goes all the way to 100%! Can’t wait!
Pain 85% Hot Sauce Ratings:
Heat Rating: ✮✮✮✮✮✮✮✮✮✮
Hot Sauce Review Recap:
As you can pretty much tell from what I have written here. I would not tell anyone to buy the Virginia Gentlemen Bourbon Chipotle Hot Sauce. However, it does have a unique taste that some may really love.
If you like bitter beers, and bitter greens, this may be a good hot sauce for you to try. I am not a fan of bitter foods, but I know there is a huge following out there for that type of flavor profile.
In contrast, I would highly recommend the Pain 85% Hot Sauce. If you like it spicy, and still want some decent flavor, this is a great hot sauce for you. I will surely try some of their other hot sauces and let you know how that goes too!
Let me know what you think after you have tried it. Also feel free to check out my Hot Sauce Shop to see all of my favorites in one place! If you have questions, comments, or suggestions please let me know. I would love to hear from you. Thanks for reading and talk to you soon!
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