best-selling hot sauces for 2012 at the Carolina Sauce Company online store. While most of the list comprises the "usual suspects," we have a first-time top-ten finisher that will make NC State University students, alumni and fans happy....
1. Matouk's West Indian Hot Sauce: By far our best-selling hot sauce of all time, this spicy, sunny hot sauce combines tropical papaya with fiery scotch bonnet peppers in a traditional West Indian mustard base for a flavor that's tangy but not tart, with plenty of powerful heat that's balanced by naturally sweet fruit. Thick and rich, not runny like thin vinegar sauces, Matouk's will stick to your food and make the flavors "pop."
2. Busha Browne's Pukka Sauce: A favorite of folks who enjoy straightforward, all-purpose vinegar pepper sauces, this colonial-style hot sauce from Jamaica pairs well with everything from breakfast sausage, eggs & hash browns to lunch sandwiches or pizza to dinnertime entrees of any variety, especially grilled, roasted or baked foods, soups, stews, casseroles, etc.
3. Scorned Woman Hot Sauce: This hot sauce is a true classic that's been around for many years, and its special blend of chili peppers plus black peppers is the reason why. Similar to Pukka Sauce but with more of a tangy "bite," you can use it in the same way as Pukka, and also add it to bloody marys, homemade wing sauce, and other uses calling for an assertive, fiery-hot vinegar pepper sauce.
4. Jamaica Hell Fire 2 in 1 Hot Sauce: Made in Jamaica using sun-ripened local peppers and Blue Mountain pimento (allspice) in a savory tomato-vinegar base, this medium-hot sauce boasts a mellow, food-friendly flavor that's not as harsh or "sharp" as straight-vinegar sauces. Whether you splash it on french fries or other fried foods, pour it on scrambled eggs, drizzle it on pizza, or mix it into beans and rice, it will complement your food without overpowering it.
Matouk's Calypso Hot Sauce: This is the slightly hotter sibling of our top-selling hot sauce. Its big, bold flavor, subtle sweetness and fiery heat make it best suited for more robust dishes like grilled or roasted meats, beans & rice, hearty stews, and the like. If you're craving true West Indian fire and flavor, you won't be disappointed.
6. NC State Wolfpack Hot Sauce: This is the first of our collegiate hot sauces to break into the best-seller list. Made with all-natural ingredients and bearing the officially licensed logo & colors of North Carolina State University, Wolfpack Hot Sauce is a classic Louisiana-style cayenne pepper vinegar sauce. Its honest, uncomplicated flavor makes it an excellent choice as an everyday table sauce as well as a safe choice for recipes calling for hot sauce. And it's perfect for tailgating or giving as a gift to NCSU students, alumni, professors, staff and fans.
7. Matouk's Flambeau Sauce: This is by far the hottest of the Matouk's hot sauces, made with a very generous amount of aged select scotch bonnet peppers. Savory, not sweet, and at the top of the natural heat scale (not artificially enhanced with capsaicin or pepper extract), Flambeau is for serious chileheads only and should be used with care until you're sure you can handle the heat. But unlike "extreme" hot sauces, this super-hot sauce actually tastes really good, with real pepper flavor in a rich mustard base.
8. Walkerswood Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce: If you prefer a straightforward scotch bonnet hot sauce where the pepper's natural flavor plays the starring role (as opposed to added spices or other ingredients), this hot sauce is for you.
Matouk's Hot Pepper Salsa Picante Sauce: Comparable in heat to Calypso but more savory without sweetness or fruit to temper the scotch bonnet peppers, this traditional mustard-based West Indian hot sauce is excellent as an accompaniment to grilled, roasted, broiled or braised meats and chicken, on hamburgers, with sausages, in Caribbean dishes like red rice & beans, and with other hearty fare. Not as hot as Flambeau, it does have enough of a high-powered burn to please fiery-foods fanatics who like their food HOT.
10. Dave's Ultimate Insanity Sauce: Completing our list of last year's best-selling hot sauces is the hottest of the Insanity sauces regularly produced by Dave's Gourmet (only his annual limited-edition Private Reserve is hotter). This ultra-hot sauce gets its relentless, unforgiving burn from capsaicin (pepper) extract and is best and most safely used by the micro-droplet or carefully added to recipes rather than on served food. Yes, it really is THAT hot, so please be careful!