Sunday, May 3, 2015

Product Review: Rattler BBQ Sauce from Chris Santos

By Dru Chai

Plenty of products flood the multi-billion BBQ industry all year around, but there's something different about May, which is National BBQ Month. The weather is starting to get warmer, so dust off those grills and smokers!

I always find myself looking at BBQ sauces when I'm grocery shopping, just to see what's new. Recently I got around to trying out Rattler BBQ sauce, from celebrity chef and Food Network's Chopped judge Chris Santos.

Whenever I'm reviewing BBQ sauces, I like to read the description on the label to see if it matches up with what I'm actually tasting. Here's an excerpt from Rattler BBQ:

Rattler Barbeque Sauce features spicy Cascabel chilis, which, like the rattlesnake, are known for their distinctive bite – the name Cascabel actually translates to rattle.

The intrinsic smokiness of this complex pepper is paired with vine-ripened tomatoes, rich molasses, robust coffee, and touch of soy as well as organic honey and raisins for sweetness.

Upon first glance at the label, one would think that this BBQ sauce is spicy, and would really "bite" you in the ass. Unfortunately, I didn't taste much of a kick at all. The whole rattlesnake theme made for a nice label and marketing pitch, but it just didn't fit with the overall taste of the sauce.

I've never heard of the Cascabel chili, and I suspect not many people have either -- it didn't provide much of a distinctive or unique flavor. There was a hint of smokiness, but the tomato-based sauce is on the sweet side. For my tastebuds, I did taste plenty of raisins and not much else. Overall, the BBQ sauce was very underwhelming. I expected bigger, bolder, spicier flavors -- and not raisin-flavored BBQ sauce.

Dirty Smoke BBQ Rating (2.5 out of 5 stars)
Recommended... if you like raisins.