Monday, April 19, 2010

Bufalo Jalapeno and Bufalo Chipotle Hot Sauce Reviews

Today I want to talk about 2 commercial hot sauce, the Bufalo Jalapeno Mexican Hot Sauce, and the Bufalo Chipotle Mexican Hot Sauce, from Herdez Corp., of Stockton, Ca. according to the bottle but online searching indicates they are a Hormel product, and made in Mexico.

I have a weakness for commercial hot sauces. Because they are readily available from supermarkets and local specialty stores, I think of them as hot sauces for everyone. So I am in a never-ending search to find the overlooked or unnoticed among those hot sauces which you can often just go down to the store and buy.

Two recent discoveries of which I very much approve are Mexican, the Bufalo Jalapeno. and Bufalo Chipotle, and I bought them from our local King's supermarket, a local chain. Cost less than 3 bucks each for the 5.5 oz bottles.

The Bufalo Jalapeno is RED, not Green, and clearly made from fully ripened Jalapeno peppers, and so this hot sauce has fully ripened, fruity flavors, rather than the grassy, herby flavors of the unripened Green Jalapeno.

Bufalo Jalapeno Mexican Hot Sauce:
Ingdts: Water, Carrots, Distilled Vinegar, Chile Peppers, Sugar, Salt, Carob Bean Gum, .1% Sodium Benzoate, Spices, and Red Food Coloring

Well, the ingredients make this product a fairly typical commercial product, except for the carrots, which add a nice sweetness, and which I like very much in hot sauces, though carrots are more readily found in Caribbean style sauce.

The bottle warns that this sauce is Very Hot, and while it has some heat, it is NOT very hot at all. On the tongue, there is first a sweet red pepper fruitiness along with a nice lemony saltiness from the vinegar, and the sauce fades very gradually over a minute or two to a mild or medium heat with a lingering hint of lemon and pepper sweetness. Very faintly in the background is a little hint that the pepper used is a Jalapeno from just a faint herbiness that adds complexity to the overall flavor. It's really nice. The texture is fairly thick.

I have used it on eggs, a bacon cheeseburger, in a gringo Mexican Posole pork and hominy soup, in my chick pea and smoked ham hock soup, on a chicken sandwich and in a bean salad. Was terrific in all of them. Would make a terrific wing sauce, too, I think.

If you see it, buy it; you will like it.

Highly Recommended.

Now to the Chipotle sauce. Well, this is a more narrowly focused product, useful in much the same way a spicy worcestershire sauce, or A1 steak sauce is useful, that is, on red meat.

Bufalo Chipotle Mexican Hot Sauce:
Ingdts: Water, Distilled Vinegar, Chile Peppers, Sugar, Salt, Caramel, Spices, .1% Sodium Benzoate.

It makes me laugh to compare the info provided here with that on the label for the red Jalapeno sauce. It's just about the same; except for the omission of the gum for thickening, it is the same.
So the label could be more forthcoming.The sauces are NOT the same.

Anyway. as far as the tasting goes, the first impression is one of strong Chipotle smokiness over a pretty salty/lemony vinegar flavor with a moderate pepper heat, and all flavors fade gradually leaving a predominance of mild heat with a hint of smoke, salt, and vinegar after a minute or 2. Quite pleasant, no bitterness really. The texture is very thick.

The heavy meatiness of the sauce would seem to restrict its use to, well, heavy and meaty dishes. Which is true. Great on burgers and steak. Don't even want to try it on other stuff.

Recommended within its narrow range of utility.

Yours in Heat and Flavor,


Photos courtesy of

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