Red Brothers Fiery Habanero All Natural BBQ Sauce

While at the Swinetastic BBQ Festival, a KCBS Competition in Frederick, MD on June 17-18, 2011, I happened upon a couple of Maryland-based BBQ sauce companies. John Layton of Red Brothers was participating in the Backyard Competition while his brother Chris manned their vendor’s booth. After tasting 2 of their 3 BBQ Sauces, I decided to purchase the hottest of the offerings, their Fiery Habanero All Natural BBQ sauce. Based on an 80 year old family recipe from their Grandma D (a great family story, BTW), I persuaded Brian to try this on wings this weekend. Although neither of us prefer a hot BBQ sauce, we decided to give it a go, based on the flavor profile, and the fact that it may make for some great “hot” wings.

Red Brothers Fiery Habanero BBQ Sauce

Red Brothers Fiery Habanero BBQ Sauce

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BBQ Sauce Maryland Style – Doomer’s Q Sauces

This is BBQ Sauce Maryland Style

Doomers Q Threesome

Yes I said Maryland Style! We all know the traditional regional BBQ sauces from Memphis, Kansas City, Texas, the Carolinas, and Georgia and Alabama… but there is a company that has recently launched their Maryland based BBQ sauces – Doomer’s Q Sauces – crafting BBQ Sauce Maryland Style. And owner/creator Todd Dooms and his wife Jo have nailed what a Maryland style BBQ sauce should be.

Tomato based with a good balance of both the vinegar and molasses components and with a touch of Worcestershire sauce to really round out the flavor, their first three sauces of Original, Hot & Spicy, and Dark bring a delicious new take on BBQ sauce that screams Maryland!

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Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri Launches New Line of Barbeque Sauces and Salsas

Just in time for summer grilling, Guy Fieri launches new line of Barbeque sauces and Salsas


Chef Guy Fieri, star of Food Network shows “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” and “Guy’s Big Bite,” has launched his first-ever line of barbeque sauces and salsas. From Bourbon Brown Sugar Barbeque Sauce to 7 Pepper Salsa, the chef, restaurateur and best-selling author is bringing his rockin’ flavors to thousands of supermarkets across America, as well as serving them up in his restaurants Johnny Garlic’s California Pasta Grill and Tex Wasabi’s Rock-n-Roll Sushi BBQ.
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CaJohns Select Grillin Smoky Bourbon BBQ Sauce Review

We have two bottles of CaJohns Select Grillin BBQ sauces on hand, his Smoky Bourbon and Spicy Bourbon styles. We’re going to focus on the Smoky Bourbon BBQ sauce for this review. Winners of the 2011 Fiery Food Challenge, CaJohns has launched these sauces as a new “upscale” line of products, and they do not disappoint.

cajohns-smoky-bourbon-wings
With a few dozen chicken wings on hand, we simply seasoned them with salt and pepper, and grilled them until almost done. (This time, they were all “drummies”, which Marilyn prefers… and I like the “flats”, but I’m flexible.) They cooked up nice and crispy. During the last 10 minutes of grilling, we slathered the Cajohns Select Grillin Smoky BBQ Sauce on them, turned them after 2 or 3 minutes and repeated the process twice more.

As you can see in the pic, they caramelized nicely, without burning, and turned out to be the best bbq wings we’ve ever cooked.

Now, let’s get into the sauce.

cajohns-smoky-bourbon-bbq-texture
Texture & Appearance:

Marilyn: Rated 5 out of 5 Stars – This sauce has a great, thick texture with a dark red to brown color, but not too thick and slick like so many store bought BBQ sauces. There are visible small bits of pepper and garlic, and you can smell the bourbon in it. It doesn’t run or thin out while sitting on the plate.

Brian: Rated 5 out of 5 Stars – I love the texture of this sauce. It sits on the plate without running, even after 30 minutes. The dark coloring is very attractive, with the flecks of peppers and seasonings. Thick, rich – almost a “mash” consistency to this sauce brings on a serious BBQ sauce contender, as well as being worthy of sitting high on the shelves of your gourmet foods aisle.

Taste:

Marilyn: Rated 4 out of 5 Stars – Straight out of the bottle, I love how I can “chew” this sauce… its tiny bits and thick consistency give it some real bite that brings on it’s own level of heat. The bourbon adds its warm heat profile. It is sweet without being the first impression.

Brian: Rated 5 out of 5 Stars – This sauce is gritty, thick, and astoundingly delicious right off the spoon. Tasty and spicy without being overly hot. I agree with Marilyn, I could just eat and chew on this sauce as a treat.

Heat Level:

Marilyn: Rated 3.5 out of 5 Stars – If this were a hot sauce, I would only give it 2.5 stars, but for a BBQ sauce… it brings on the heat. The ancho chiles and black pepper had me burning for a few minutes. And the bourbon just added to the warmth.

Brian: Rated 2 out of 5 Stars – For me it’s only mildly spicy. And I’m ok with that. As I’ve posted many times, I don’t usually care for a hot BBQ sauce… or too much heat in my BBQ sauces. This Smoky sauce is just right.

cajohns-smoky-bourbon-label
Label/Graphics:

Marilyn: Rated 3 out of 5 Stars – Big 16 ounce jar, very crisp graphics. The label is not “cutesy” – very straight forward. Eye-catching on a grocery shelf, but might get lost in a hot sauce or BBQ shelf.

Brian: Rated 2.5 out of 5 Stars – Simple, upscale graphics. Perfect for the gourmet aisle. Very little artwork with bold fonts and colors. As a reminder, I’m color-blind… so what do I know? Heh.

cajohns-select-grillin-sauces-smoky-and-spicy-bourbon-bbq-sauce
Overall Rating:

Marilyn: Rated 5 out of 5 Stars – After tasting the finished product on wings, I found the sticky, warm bourbon flavor really comes out. Not as hot as the sauce out of the bottle, but still warm enough to satisfy *any* BBQ fan. These are the best BBQ wings we’ve ever cooked. As I ate these, the phrase “OMG” kept coming out. Well done CaJohns! Next time I cook with this sauce, I will use much less or very little pepper, and very little salt.

Brian: Rated 5 out of 5 Stars – I agree these are the best BBQ wings we’ve ever cooked. The sauce set up well on the wings, behaved nicely on the grill without burning. Nice bite and big flavors. Sweet and delicious!

Ingredients: tomatoes, brown sugar, vinegar, organic agave nectar, organic tamari (water, organic soybeans, salt, organic alcohol), worcestershire sauce (distilled vinegar, molasses, corn sugar, water, salt, caramel color, garlic powder, sugar, spices, anchovies, tamarind, natural flavor), bourbon whiskey, chipotle chiles, garlic, onion, ancho chiles, salt, spices, natural hickory smoke flavor.

In Summary: These sauces are brand new and my not be available on CaJohns.com just yet. You are getting an exclusive first look! Stay tuned for our review of the CaJohns Select Grillin Spicy Bourbon BBQ Sauce soon.

Update: You CAN order these sauces now by calling CaJohns at 888-703-FIRE (3473). They are also available in the Ohio area at Whole Foods, Weilands, North Market, and Jungle Jims.

First BarBAYQ Comp and Festival in Annapolis Maryland

barBAYq in Annapolis MD 2011

Annapolis Maryland, aka NapTown, is hosting the First Annual BarBAYQ Competition and Festival this weekend, May 13-14, 2011 at the Navy – Marine Corps Stadium. A KCBS sanctioned event, for the Maryland State Championship, there will be 48 teams competing.

Free admission, Family Fun, Kid’s Play areas, and a “Golden Ticket” for $40 to enter the BBQ Tasting Tent to sample the BBQ competitors’ entries.

All details are on http://barbayq.com – including parking, maps, and schedule of events that include live music, a “cornhole” contest, vendors, foods, and crafts.

We truly hope this event is a huge hit for Maryland BBQ fans!

Hit that big Play button below to hear my audio Cinch about the event!

May is National Barbecue Month 2011

Barbecue Month
May is National Barbecue Month. It’s time to celebrate that great American tradition, whether you grill, or smoke, or barbecue low and slow. And it doesn’t matter what you cook on. As evidenced by the picture above (that’s no Weber or Big Green Egg… just a frame, some fire and pork and happy folks!), proving you can barbecue on anything.
And I’m of the school of thought that “barbecue” is any outdoor cooking.

Here are a few great barbecue resources for recipes, pics, techniques and overall BBQ information:
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Vote for 2011 Readers’ Choice Awards on BBQ.About.Com


Derrick Riches from BBQ.About.Com recently launched his Barbecue & Grilling 2011 Readers’ Choice Awards where you can vote for your favorites in six categories: Charcoal Grill, Gas Grill, Backyard Smoker, Competition Smoker, and of special interest to us are the final two categories of Barbecue Sauce and Barbecue Rub.

After inviting his readers to submit their best of the best, Derrick has narrowed down the categories to the Top Five Nominees in each.
You can vote once each day. Voting concludes at midnight, March 8th, 2011 with the winners announced March 15th, 2011.

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Draper’s BBQ Smokin’ Sauce and All Purpose Rub

Draper’s BBQ is a Western Kentucky family owned company begun by James Draper. Their Smokin’ Sauce started as a dare that has since grown into a life of its own. Their A.P. Rub (All Purpose Rub) was brought to life right alongside the sauce. Many ingredients were put in the rub to dovetail with the sauce, to create a different flavor profile than if they were used alone or separately.

Shane Draper, James’ grandson, now runs DrapersBBQ.com and sent us a limited edition gift set of their Smokin’ Sauce and A.P. Rub for review. We were so impressed with the presentation, we just knew there was a great story in the Draper’s history, as well as a promising BBQ taste experience ahead of us. Here’s a photo of the set we received:

Drapers Sauce & Rub

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