Saturday, 10 May 2014

Chilli Drops - Smoky Naga

The biggest challenge presented to a sauce being tested here at Hot Sauce UK headquarters is the 'substrate' used to accompany it.  The test taste for the 'Smoky Naga' by Chilli Drops of London Town was carried out using a £3 pizza from Sainsbury's.  I horribly over-cooked the pizza and the toppings were clearly applied by a chimp with one eye on the clock.  These pizzas were born to disappoint, and consistently achieve their mission.  Harsh conditions indeed.

There is a reason to my method though, I've previously talked about how the Cottage Delight Naga Chilli Sauce can rescue a crap pizza, so this is a sort of comparison.

On first tasting the overwhelming impression is of the smokiness (provided by lovely liquid smoke), there wasn't much of a burn, and if the taste scope range had stopped at that point I would have been quite disappointed.  What's the point in buying boutique hot sauces if they're no point interesting or exciting than the crap that Heinz shunts out to people with polystyrene tastebuds, trained on the banality of microwave suppers and food designed to 'play it safe' rather entertain and excite.  But the taste didn't stop at smoky.  Oh no.

A very warming heat started coming through, fuelled by an impressive variety of peppers contained within.  This is a reassuring cuddle in a bottle.  Both the consistency and taste of the Chilli Drops 'Smoky Naga' is very satisfyingly thick.  I love hot sauces that I can slather over food (without ruining it).  Hell, I could probably drink this sauce straight out of the bottle.

There's a rewarding complexity in the after-taste of this sauce, something that many sauce 'auteurs' don't attain.  Good sauce keeps on giving, preferably for a while after you've finished eating.

I tip my hat to Chilli Drops, this the first of their sauces I've tried, and it's incredibly likely to become an essential component of my shelf of pain.  I'm really looking forward to trying the rest of the range now.

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