Review: CPR Kickin’ Hot Apple Surprise Hot Sauce
The announcement of the Big Dawg collectibles for the Fiery Foods Show inspired me to dig into the box of goodies Darrel & Candy sent me not a week earlier. In fact, I’ve already consumed an entire bottle of the Habanero Lime Hot Sauce. Over the weekend, I braved the icy cold NY wind to pick up some plain vanilla ice cream at the market in order to give the Kickin’ Hot Apple Surprise a try. It’s a good thing I checked out the bottles of both sauces before opening, one set was signed and numbered and we all know that a signed and numbered bottle is a terrible thing to waste.
Ingredients: Green Apples, Apple Cider Vinegar, Brown Sugar, Habanero Peppers, Jalapeno Peppers, Red Onions, Fresh Squeezed Lime, Chipotle Flakes, Garlic, Ground Cinnamon, Sea Salt, and other spices.
Smell: I can’t put my finger on the exact smell that comes to mind when taking a big whiff of Kickin’ Hot Apple Surprise, but I can tell you that I don’t smell a whole lot of apples. The apples do lend a sweetness to the aroma, but if I was blindfolded I wouldn’t be able to tell you that apples were the primary fruit. I do pick up hints of cinnamon backed by a smokey hint of the cider vinegar and chipotle flakes.
Initial Taste: Straight on the tongue, the first thing I could taste was the cider vinegar. Then, after swishing the sauce around the mouth a bit, the cinnamon and apples began to pop on my taste buds. Following the smell, the sauce isn’t as sweet as you may think it to be. It’s strong flavor profile is not over powered by the heat of the habaneros nor the sweetness of the apples.
On Food: I drizzled Kickin’ Hot Apple Surprise over my bowl of Vanilla Bean ice cream and dug in. I was a bit apprehensive about trying this sauce on ice cream because of the initial smell and taste, but it’s the reason I bought the ice cream in the first place so I went with it. Now, on the ice cream this sauce really shined. The sweetness of the ice cream balanced the strong flavor profile of the sauce – each bite of ice cream & sauce was like a sweet & spicy apple pie.
Conclusion: Now, if I hadn’t of tried this sauce on ice cream first, I would say that it needs to increase the sweetness, tone down the smokiness and add a touch more of cinnamon. But on ice cream, the sweetness is no longer a factor and the cinnamon holds it’s own. It’s the smokey flavor that sticks around my mouth though and with a name like Kickin’ Hot Apple Surprise, I’d like to taste more apples & less smoke.
So overall, I’d say this is an excellent semi-sweet hot sauce that you’ll be glad you tried on ice cream. I wouldn’t be surprised to find this sauce to be a great marinade for pork chops or chicken. And don’t worry about the heat level – it tickled my taste buds with just a tinge of heat.
Big Dawg Salsa
North Richland Hills, Tx. 76182