Following on the heels of his Nuclear Scurvy hot sauce, I have been effort-ing to get the review of this other sauce from Lynn Duck (who’s quite the manly man, btw) done before the winter is over! I have been so inundated with stuff to taste and review that it is sometimes hard to keep on track to get them all done before I forget what I tasted when I first opened it. That said, I reviewed my notes from the first Devil Duck sauce and set out to give this one a fair shake. Looking at the bottle, the first thing that struck me was the color. Darker than the amarillo of the Nuclear Scurvy, this one had something of an light orange hue I have not seen with too many sauces. Reviewing the ingredients list, I saw this:
Ingredients: ripe serrano and habanero peppers, onion, vinegar, dark beer, spices, olive oil
Wow, I can’t say that I’ve ever seen a hot sauce made with beer before. Lots of liquors, such as whiskey, tequila, and other spirits…but never beer. Dark beer has the tendency in chili to be an overpowering taste, so I speculated at how that might play into the flavor profile. That, plus the equally different olive oil, gave a unique set of ingredients that was either going to make this sauce soar…or fall flat on its face. Setting out to do my tasting, I was hoping that this sauce would do the latter rather than the former. Lining up some of my usual tasting suspects, I set off to give this one a whirl as well….
First impression: As is typical, I always take a whiff of just about every hot sauce just to see if the aroma will give away anything about the taste. What I got from this one was a pungency I have not normally detected from a habanero sauce. In fact, it reminded me very much of some of the fatalii sauces that I’ve run across. Fatalii has that unmistakable chinense smell that also says “I will will hurt you once I hit your tastebuds.” Now I knew this one wasn’t fatalii, but it had that warning smell. That said, I poured out a little on the plate (see above) to get an idea of the consistency. Still a little bit on the thin side of the spectrum, it was a little thicker than the Nuclear Scurvy, which I liked, and was very well-blended. Some ingredient separation was noted before I shook the bottle, but not enough to be off-putting by any stretch. Again, the orange-mustard color is so different than most sauces of its ilk, and it made me wonder at what level of ripeness that Lynn had harvested his peppers.
Taste: With a mixture of anticipation and hesitancy, I sampled a glob of this sauce from my fingertip. My spider-sense was right about the concern over its heat, as the capsaicin washed over my palate in no time at all. To me, the taste was mostly that of the habanero with very little hints of the serrano. The onion had more flavor notes than the serrano, but that sometimes happens with a pepper that is dominant in the flavor profile as is the habanero.
Pairing with this sauce with food was a little more of a challenge, as the color and consistency did not lend itself to as wide a range of menu items. Basically, I liked this sauce in anything where it could be mixed in to augment the flavor. Soups & chili were big, as many a co-worker of mine saw me sucking wind as I was eating a bowl of chili generously treated with a huge dollop of this sauce. Swirling these up with other condiments and sauces showed some mixed results, as I tried this with marinara and cream-based sauces. Poured over foods or used as a dipping sauce tested the limits guaranteed cheapest kamagra of my heat endurance, as the cumulative effects of the habs hit very quickly. Definitely using this stuff straight is not for the faint of heart, unless you’re loco like me about your habaneros.
Overall recommendation: Since I have a previously reviewed Devil Duck sauce to compare this one to, I can say this one is an improvement. Lynn has done better with some of the issues about color & consistency, although this one could be tweaked a little more as well. For flavor, the sauce could stand a little more balance of the serranos to help the flavor profile…or just eliminate them altogether and make this a super-habanero sauce. Some of the concerns I had about the unusual ingredients, such as the oil and dark beer, were for naught since those seemed to neither help nor harm the taste. What this sauce has in abundance is heat. Barnacle Remover? Heck, this sauce is potent enough to not just remove the barnacles but will leave the boat surface shining like it was brand spanking new. The taste is good, although the heat tips the scale in that direction. Use it like you would any habanero-based sauce, and the food pairings are really wide open. Devil Duck is off to a running start, so I hope to see (and taste) more from Lynn in the future. Nice!