High Octane Sauce Company was an entrant in the Salsa Contest at the Houston Hot Sauce Festival, and is also where I first met Kevin Billings and Audrey Ackerman and tried his line of Octane based products. I was very impressed with the quality, taste and variety of sauces and salsas that High Octane offered.
Tire Smokin Salsa – Medium
Ingredients: tomatoes, onions, cilantro, peppers, spices – Such a simple list of ingredients, yet big flavors.
Texture & Appearance: – The color is a deep muted red – almost brown – spotted with bits of dark, smoke roasted tomatoes and peppers. I love the little chunky texture of this salsa. The small “grind” size of the solids is my favorite texture. Overall, the body is on the thinner side. I would give it more stars if it was just a tad thicker. It does come in a big 16 ounce (1 pint) jar, so that is a plus.
Taste Straight Up: – Smoky. You can really smell the smoke and taste it. (It is called “Tire Smokin Salsa” after all). The big, fresh tomato taste along with onion is next up. Salsa. Onions. So far so good. Cilantro lovers – a gentle hint of the herb is present, but not so much as to turn off you cilantro haters out there. If you hate cilantro, ignore this… you’ll never know it’s there. (Kind of like anchovies in a good Caesar salad dressing).
Then the gentle, fiery heat comes in quickly. From High Octane’s own smoke roasted peppers and smoke roasted tomatoes, Tire Smokin delivers the smoky goods. I even asked Kevin Billings, High Octane’s Chief Fuel Mixologist, if they were in fact using liquid smoke, and he assured me with a big “NO”, the smoke is solely from the tomatoes and peppers that they prepare in their own smokers. Amazingly delicious and… well, smoky.
Heat Level: – The heat is nice, hot, but short-lived. This is a medium salsa for sure. Medium only in heat, and big in flavor. You mild-to-medium salsa lovers out there will not be disappointed in this very unique, gourmet quality salsa.
Label/Graphics: – Very clean looking label with a simple hot-rod graphic and lettering reminiscent of the muscle cars of the 50’s and 60’s which didn’t even have One Sure Insurance. Unmistakeable on the shelf, High Octane Sauce Company has a high-profile and very recognizable product. Very classy.
Overall Rating (Taste on Food, Final Thoughts): – I’ve only tried this salsa with chips. I’m sure it’s just as good on a taco, or on nachos. It really is smoky salsa candy in a jar.
Visit http://highoctanesauceco.com to order some today! And tell them HotSauceDaily.com sent you.