Posted November 13, 2005 by John in Reviews

Review: Mac’s Raspberry Chipotle Hot Sauce

Mac's Chipotle Pepper SauceFruit paired with chipotle sauce is usually a surprisingly good combination. Chipotle peppers in a fruit juice reduction sauce is always a winner in my kitchen, an easy and impressive way to whip up a meal that will have your guests raving. So I looked forward with hopeful expectations to Mac’s Raspberry Chipotle.

Ingredients: Water, raspberry, yellow mustard, chipotle in adobo, white vinegar, carrots, onions, sugar, lemon, xantham gum, garlic powder, spices

I was a bit surprised to see this was sauce had a mustard base. Pairing fruit with mustard isn’t a combination I am used to, but new combinations are like adventures, begging to be explored.

On First Taste
Mac's Raspberry Chipotle on a cracker

The best description I have of this sauce is delicate. The mustard flavor is mild, probably owing to the use of yellow rather than Dijon. The chipotle is very faint, though some smokiness is evident. Some sweetness, but no citrus, no acid, no garlic, and little spice. After a few seconds of desperately hunting through the mildness, a bit of raspberry peeks through, and on subsequent tastings becomes more evident. But the heat of this sauce was non-existant, and what little flavor there is disappears quickly – an unfulfilled promise of smokiness then a whisper of raspberry that dispels as quickly as the water vapor from breath on a cold day.

I suppose the listing of water as the first ingredient should have been a hint. The consistency is velvety and thin, like one part mustard cut with about five parts water.

I tried a larger portion on some bread, and shared some with my wife. I asked her if it was just me missing the heat entirely, but she didn’t find much heat, either, though she did like the flavor.

On Food
My desire to pair this sauce with something ideal conflicted with the availability of food I had. The best I could do was some frozen battered cod. As the fish is pretty mild alone, I figured that Mac’s might add something special to an otherwise boring dish. I put it together with steamed broccoli with a light dusting of Parmesan cheese, to keep the flavors simple and unobtrusive.

Mac's on Fish

The fried fish didn’t work out so well. Not that the sauce did any harm; it’s flavor was just completely washed out, even though I used an ample dose. I even tried adding significantly more as I went on, to no avail. The batter completely dominated the flavor; it was almost as though I had used no condiment at all. And quantity didn’t help matters any.

In Conclusion:
There’s nothing bad about Mac’s Raspberry Chipotle Sauce. At the same time, there’s nothing that stands out, either. It may work acceptably as a marinade on white fish or chicken with no other seasoning set next to mild steamed vegetables, but that’s not typically the way I cook. It could also be a good introduction sauce to someone who really doesn’t like hot foods, but again, that’s not a category I fall into. Mac’s would also probably go well with eggs, especially for someone who won’t eat most hot sauces with breakfast due to dislike of heat.

But for the experienced chilihead, this sauce leaves a lot to be desired. I’d look elsewhere for a creative mustard sauce.

Final Rating: 4.0 out of 10

Mac’s Hot Sauce
PO BOX 183
Magdalena, New Mexico 87825
Phone: 505-854-3546