The Last Dab

I recently checked out the NY Hot Sauce Expo, just for kicks. It was like a marketplace of vendors displaying a range of hot sauces to try, plus related parafernalia. I saw a hot sauce fountain for chip dipping. I saw expensive, intricate leather hot sauce holsters for traveling in safety while packing heat. The festival itself was a hoot. There was a huge selection of hot sauces, with various contests happening on a stage. My favourite moments were spent nursing a beer outside while watching people choke for half an hour after trying too much Hellfire sauce. Fortunately, a free milk booth was very strategically located nearby, to sooth these broken souls.

Naturally, there was a chili eating contest, but with a chocolate twist. Free chocolate might sound delightful but I assure you it was not. This was a special, new, ridiculously expensive, ridiculously hot bar of chocolate from Fuego Box called the Choco Challenge. It features the Black Reaper, which is supposedly hotter than the Carolina Reaper (the current hottest pepper, officially). Watch this space, though, because there’s about 4 new peppers all vying for official validation as the new world’s hottest pepper.

My interest in hot sauces has only been recent. Mostly it’s because of the Youtube show Hot Ones. The host interview’s famous people while they both eat 10 wings cooked in progressively hotter sauces. It’s a riot and it’s now wildly popular. I feel like the show has turned the traditional celebrity model upside down, in true internet fashion. The host was almost a nobody when it started 4 years ago but it’s become so popular that all the stars now want to come on the show and be interviewed. My favourite episode is probably Gordon Ramsay because the burn brings out his signature potty mouth. I visited the Heatonist showroom, which happens to be in Brooklyn, and this opened my taste buds to all the possibilities. Since then I’ve been trying all the different hot sauces I can find in my local bodegas.

Like most things in America, nobody believes that “less is more”. More is more, obviously. Everyone wants to have the biggest, baddest, hottest sauce. Usually the hottest sauces taste gross, but I’m enjoying raising my tolerance so that I can try them and find the good ones. Tobasco is now boring. With a little more practice, I might even work up to The Last Dab.


– Gordon Ramsay on Hot Ones –

– Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard do the choco challenge –

– The expo itself –

2 Responses to “The Last Dab”
  1. That Gordon Ramsay clip was great.

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