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Hot Sauce

Highway Inn “Smok’n Moco (Diner E’s), served with side of Mac Salad and Hawaiian Chili Pepper Water

Yesterday I ran into two great instances of a passion for hot sauce: the classic Hawaiian Chili Pepper Water served by default with plate lunches at Highway Inn at the new location in Kaka’ako, as well as a vast collection of regional styles from across the US at Bubba Gump Shrimp Company on the THIRD LEVEL of Ala Moana Center…

Personally I can’t handle anything over the equivalent Scoville Scale level of around 3,000 units, just under the Jalapeno class…

I could NEVER eat a Jalapeno whole, seeds and all, without feeling my tongue is going to melt away.

The collection of unopened hot sauces at Bubba Gump’s Ala Moana have been on display there since they opened many, many years ago, so no telling what the fermentation process has done to them, and I don’t think you could pay me a million bucks to test them should that offer ever come up.

I remember the Travel Channel featuring a show on Hot Sauces once, showcasing an online club you can join that will ship you a boutique hot sauce from all over the world every month. Check that out here at TheHotSauceClub.com.

What they’re missing in this collection, is a custom-made glass bottle shaped like a pepper. Now THAT would be cool (but still hot).

As for Highway Inn’s Hawaiian Chili Pepper Water, pronounced more appropriately in Pidgin English as “Chili Peppah’ Waddah”, it’s PERFECT. Just the right balance of vinegar/salt/Hawaiian Chili Pepper spicy heat ratio.  Da’ ‘kine, laddat.

Highway Inn Kaka’ako default table condiments – (left to right) Aloha Shoyu, Hawaiian Chili Pepper Water (reasonably HOT, in a “sleeper” way), Tobasco Sauce, and table salt ‘n pep’

Are you hot-up for hot sauces? Can’t stand the heat? What Scoville unit level can you handle (see chart)? What’s your favorite hot sauce style and brand? Mexican? American? Latin? European? African? Middle Eastern? Polynesian? Asian? What do you most often use hot sauces with? Soups and stews? Stir Fry? BBQ? Marinades? Dipping Sauce? Cocktails?

Hot Sauce – Wikipedia

HD audio version (no video)


7 thoughts on “Hot Sauce

  • March 7, 2014 at 9:36 am

    Are you going to do a review on the new Highway Inn? I’ve heard mixed reviews so far.

  • March 7, 2014 at 9:41 am


    Yes, that will be up next. ;-)

  • March 7, 2014 at 10:05 am

    ‘ey, Pomai:

    I used to try all kinds of hot sauces and salsas wherever I went, even tried coupla habanero and ghost chili sauces…wowweee those were HOTHOTHOT! There’s a chain on the Mainland called Red Robin and they have a Ghost Chili add-on available for any of their burgers consisting of fried jalapenos, fresh cut jalapenos and ghost chili sauce… had one the other day and I was breaking a sweat in a coupla minutes! Have had sauces so hot you can’t taste anything but the burn…. what is the use of that? Maybe its to hide the crappy food that it’s on… otherwise why waste money on food you can’t taste and enjoy? So I have basically reduced my heat index to fresh cut jalapenos on burgers and stuff. On the sauce side, I have settled on that old reliable, Tabasco… it’s probably the only one of the sauces out there that is aged for 3 years before its made! http://www.tabasco.com/tabasco-products/how-its-made/making-original-tabasco-sauce/ Funny, it was my Dad’s favorite too… we never had any other on the table, not even chili peppah water. I think my Dad liked the sweet-sour heat it has… me likee, too!

  • March 7, 2014 at 1:09 pm

    Pomai, I like my food spicy. This collection of hot sauces make my mouth water.

  • March 7, 2014 at 3:55 pm

    Pomai, I make my regular Buffalo Hot Wings with a combination of Frank’s Red Hot XTRA HOT Cayenne Pepper Sauce (2,085 Scoville units only 42% the heat of a jalapeño pepper) and Tabasco Habanero sauce (7,000-8,000 Scoville units 1.6 times the heat of a jalapeño pepper). Sometimes I’ll add in Mexican Chili Powder and maybe some Korean Gochujang Hot Pepper Paste and Korean Gochugaru Hot Pepper Powder to add complexity and depth of flavor (lips to back of throat feelings).

    I used to use Dave’s Insanity Sauce (180,000 Scoville units 36 times the heat of a jalapeño pepper) with Frank’s Original Red Hot Cayenne Sauce but I ran out of the Dave’s and can’t find it on Oahu.

    I had two brothers who owned an Outback Steak House franchise make me up some Buffalo Hot Wings appetizers from the Thai chilies (estimated 50,000 – 100,000 Scoville units 20 times hotter than a jalapeño pepper) their mother sent them from home. I ate the whole thing and did not break out in a sweat and still ate my full steak dinner! Although I must say, it was hot but I had been in Thailand eating the food so I was used to it.

    You can use Buffalo Wild Wings Blazin’ Sauce (200,000 – 350,000 Scoville units 70 times hotter than a jalapeño pepper).

    If you want to be creative you can use your pressure cooker to make your own Tabasco or Hot Sauce. It only takes about 1 min to extract all the capsaicin out of the peppers: http://www.hippressurecooking.com/pressure-cooker-hot-sauce/

  • March 10, 2014 at 7:30 am

    Pomai- My brother and I made some chili pepa water with 2 habraneros, 2 Hawaiian chili peppers, and a ghost pepper(1,041,427 Scoville heat units (SHU)) …talk about fire! he raises the Ghost chilis in Hawaii Kai, and told me that the birds would eat his hawaiian Chilis and harbraneros, but one bite of the ghost and they learned not to eat them.

  • March 10, 2014 at 8:16 am

    @ Dean-San – I just don’t get consuming that many Scoville units. What’s the point? It just drowns out the flavor of the food it’s on/in.

    @ Ken-San – See comment to Dean-San. I’m not inclined to make my own Tobasco Sauce, nor do I keep the stuff in my fridge/pantry.

    I will say, the names of the various hot sauces as displayed at Bubba Gump are quite amusing. Such as “Liquid Stoopid”. lol



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