Mayo, mustard, ketchup and relish—all popular condiments, but none kick up a dish quite like hot sauce does. Over the last few years, hot sauce has undergone a revolution, and companies in Coastal Virginia are developing their own flavorful take on the spicy condiment. These small-batch producers are creating sauces that range from tongue-tingling mild to sweat-inducing heat. Here are five local hot sauce companies that will pepper some life into any dish.
Look for these hot sauces at area farmers markets, gourmet grocers and local restaurants.
Ashburn Sauce Company
Virginia Beach-based Ashburn Sauce Company is known across the state for producing high-quality sauces, mixers and seasonings. Ashburn’s Carolina Reaper Hot Sauce gets its name from the world’s hottest pepper—the Carolina Reaper. The bold spices, smoke and heat are sure to leave a burn you won’t soon forget.
Heat seekers can take their taste buds on a flavorful adventure with Bootstrap Burt’s hot sauce. These unique sauces, in flavors such as Mango Habanero, Roasted Jalapeño Pineapple and Kiwi Habanero, pack just enough spice without scorching your palate. For a more familiar heat, try The Hooch, made with Ghost Pepper and Carolina Reaper peppers, guaranteed to make you sweat.
If you’re grabbing a bite to eat from Hangry’s food truck or brick and mortar in Virginia Beach, be sure to add a few shakes of one of their signature hot sauces to your food. Hangry’s makes three sauces—The Hangry, a medium serrano and jalapeño sauce; The Hangrier, a spicy habanero chili sauce; and the Day of the Dead sauce, a sweeter sauce with mango, pineapple and habanero.
Speedy’s Hot Sauce
Made with Virginia-sourced hot peppers, Speedy’s Hot Sauces offer complex and smoky flavors. Speedy’s best seller is The Original, a smoky and savory carrot-based habanero sauce that has an after burn of heat. Enhance the flavors of any dish with one of the seven sauces, including a tangy Citrus Jalapeño sauce and touch of sweet with the Honey Habanero sauce.
Sunburnt Sauce Company
Sunburnt Sauce Company offers a different kind of “sauce-perience” from these all-natural, locally sourced hot sauces. Sunburnt’s three tropical-themed sauces blend sweetness and acidity with the heat from different peppers. Heat levels range from the mild Lemon Basil Jalapeño to the medium Pineapple Ghost Pepper, with the Mango Peach Jolokia sauce as the hottest in the group.