It’s getting colder outside, and with all the doom and gloom about increased energy bills you might be seeking alternative ways to warm yourself up this winter. Mild meal fans look away now, this one’s for the heat fanatics only.
1. Wasabi Vodka
A bit gimmicky? Maybe. Absolutely banging vodka to stick in your Bloody Mary? Definitely! This small batch spirit brand is created in Hampshire with English grown wasabi and uses water from natural springs on the farm. Wasabi Vodka picked gold star in the 2020 Great Taste Awards and it’s certainly unique. The vodka has a powerful spice with a hefty kick of hot mustard and radish, and that wasabi ascent through the nose that only this one-of-a-kind root can create. Add this to your cocktails if you’re looking to incorporate a deep and sharp heat. One for the mixologists for sure!
2. Pico Sauces
This cute range of Indian flavoured sauces has just launched into Ocado and offers a medley of hot recipes that will get your tongue tingling. We LOVE the colourful sketches on each bottle to match each product, ranging from an Indian dancer adorned Punjabi Ketchup, to the Kali god on the Ghost Pepper sauce, which comes with a (necessary) warning on the back of the label. The pepper sauce is one for the die-hard Scovil scale fanatics only. Use it sparingly! Alternatively, the Maha Green Chilli offers a subtler fresh chilli flavour with an equally satisfying spicy heat.
3. Eaten Alive – EDITOR’S PICK
Beautifully brightly packaged and newly launched in a full selection box, these fermented sauces are one HOT gift for any spice lover. Self professed ‘ferment obsessed’ UK chefs Glyn and Pat began selling their range on a market stall in Borough and their popularity quickly soared. We can see why. Their sauces are bursting with unique flavours created from the live and good for you bacteria. The Scotch Bonnet sauce is a blend of chili, garlic and sweet peppers, slowly fermented to develop intense fruity flavous. CAN you handle the heat? Step it up with their Extra Spicy Scotch Bonnet sauce. Amazing to pep up your cheese on toast and the Lime & Jalapeno is one for sprinkling on your guacamole and chips. The recently launched Eaten Alive ‘Hot Sauce Selection Box’ features all seven products in their hot fermented range - a brilliant gift for the spice fanatic in your life!
Available at Ocado from £4.
4. Dangerous Diablo Margarita
We’re big fans of Tom Savano cocktails as Chatting Food towers and now he’s gone and brought out a spicy little limited edition treat just in time for this year’s Dia de Los Muertos. Get your hands on one of only 600 bottles of the Dangerous Diablo Margarita ready mixed cocktail, just in time for Halloween. Artisan mescal has been combined with scotch bonnet pepper spice to give this drink an extra kick and it certainly does that with a punch. Mezcal and chilli makes the most perfect of pairings in our opinion. Pour your guests a couple of these margaritas with a spicy smoky twist to get the party going.
5. Flying Goose 12 Days of Sriracha Calendar
And finally, the Christmas warm-up for all spice lovers. Who needs central heating? This 12 Days of Sriracha calendar has been created by Thailand’s staple hot sauce brand Flying Goose in partnership with Sous Chef. Sriracha for the uninitiated is a hot sauce born in Thailand, which gets its heat from jalapeño chilli peppers. It’s comparatively mild to some of its global hot sauce counterparts coming in on the scovil scale at a mere 1,000-2,500 SHU compared to Tabasco sauce (2,500-5,000 SHU), and habanero pepper (350,000 SHU). Count down to Christmas by opening a different spicy door daily with twists on East Asia’s fave hot sauce including smoky Sriracha, Yuzu Sriracha, Tikka Sriracha and more. And no doubt you’ll have one hell of a way to pep up your left over turkey on Boxing Day too!
[Items in this article may have been gifted to Chatting Food. No financial payment has been made to feature in this article, and entries to the feature are made independently by members of the Editorial Team. This page contains affiliate links and we may receive a small commission for purchases]
Chatting Food Contributor Jo Aspin
Half American / half (born and bred) Londoner, Jo Aspin is a food writer and established freelance food, drink and lifestyle PR. When she’s not eating her way around London, she’s planning her next trip abroad.