Hard to believe that it’s been well over a year since we reviewed any of Tahiti Joe’s fine hot sauces. In deference to his sauces, they’ve always been ones we’ve liked…but have allowed others to get in the way of us reviewing more of them than we had done up until now.
Well, it’s now time to make up for our history of overlooking these sauces. To start with, we delved into a bottle of Tropi-Garlic hot sauce with the all-too-sly name of Taheati attached to it. Not sure why this one piqued our interest more than some of the others, but the notion of a hot sauce with some Italian-stylin’ to it just seemed like a good idea.
First impression: I can pretty much cease commenting on the labels and overall look of the bottles, as they all are variations on a theme. A cartoonized version of TJ himself, with colors to match the ambience of the sauce within. Cracking open the bottle, the aroma is simply heavenly. I’m a big fan of garlic. In my regular dietary array, I might normally eat enough garlic to be vampire-repellant at any given time. That said, I really dug the garlicky scent to this sauce, which seems to be augmented with some other spices…probably basil if my olfactory detection was correct. As for the ingredients, these are simply variations on the Tahiti Joe base recipe for many of his sauces:
Ingredients: aged red pepper sauce, concentrated vegetable juices (water, tomato, lemon juice, lemon oil, salt, ascorbic acid, malic acid, dehydrated parsley, carrots, bell pepper, celery), distilled vinegar, honey, Worcestershire, clam juice, parmesan cheese, fresh garlic in water, fresh onions, fresh habaneros, fresh jalapenos, spices, tic gum
Taste: There are variety of good uses for this sauce, but the one I’ll show was used on some pork loin stuffed with wild rice and bell peppers…courtesy of Whole Foods Market. The pork itself was merely mediocre by itself, but was made a whole lot better by the addition of this sauce:
I baked the pork loin for about 20-30 minutes at 375 degrees in our oven, then added the sauce to taste. Here’s what each morsel looked like with a little of this delectable sauce on it:
The sauce itself is very Italian-esque, with lots of tomato and spices to its flavor. The garlic flavor lives up to the sauce’s name and comes through pretty dominantly…which was a plus to me. The heat was medium, probably about a 5.5/10 on my personal heat scale. The peppers themselves (jalapenos and habaneros) are not hugely prominent with this sauce, but I definitely taste a little of those in this sauce…just enough to make me want more!
I used this sauce on a fairly wide selection of foods, which would explain why I have only about an ounce of it left out of the original five that the bottle contained. It was great on damn near every food I tried it upon, Italian or otherwise. Whether it was slathered over food (like with this pork loin) or simply stirred into soup or chili, the addition of heat and flavor was boon to every dish. I almost didn’t want to mix it into food with complex flavors, as I didn’t want to lose the complexities of this sauce that way. I have to admit, though, it’s pretty amazing mixed into some marinara sauce and poured over some pasta.
After inventing his delicious Polynesian Hot Sauce, Tahiti’s Hot Sauces wanted to make another gourmet hot sauce that his vahine would enjoy. After a wild, passionate weekend in the islands with his vahine (who else?), he thought, “YOW!” She’s not only hot-blooded, she’s also half-Italian. With that in mind, Tahiti’s Hot Sauces created tropical-style Garlic Hot Sauce his vahine would crave. Now, Tahiti’s Tropi-Garlic Hot Sauce has become the #1 garlic hot sauce on the market. P.S. Tahiti’s Hot Sauces and his kauhines (sisters) dedicate Tropi-Garlic to our Makua Kane (Father)
> because he’s our Big Kahuna and it’s his favorite. Mahala Nui Loa!
Overall recommendation: If this sauce is indeed the top garlic hot sauce on the market, it certainly tastes like on worthy of its sales. It is one of my favorite Tahiti Joe’s sauces I’ve tried. It may not be one of the hotter ones he makes, but its flavor more than makes up for what it lacks in heat. If I had a case of this sauce, I’d use it on a fairly regular basis. There’s simply no shortage of what this sauce would make better, so taste some for yourself and see what you think. Enjoy!