Wednesday, April 23, 2008

REVIEW: MAD Anthony Cafe BBQ Sauce




MAD Anthony’s BBQ Sauce

Manufacturer
MAD Anthony Cafe

Website www.madanthonycafe.com

Quality *** (3.5 out of 5)
Viscosity *** (3 out of 5)
Aroma **** (4 out of 5)
Heat **** (4 out of 5)
Appearance **** (4 out of 5)
Packaging **** (4 out of 5)

This sauce was used on pulled pork and brisket that was cooked low and slow over oak and cherry wood. The opinions are both mine and Will Breakstone’s, owner and pit-master of Willie B’s Award Winning BBQ.

MAD Anthony of MAD Anthony Café is Michael Anthony of Van Halen. It seems that Mr. Anthony is one of a growing number of rock legends that are aficionados of hot sauces and have moved into the manufacturing side of things. This could be taken as a cautionary warning, as I’m not overly enthused by dilettantes dabbling in the market place, but the quality of the sauce quickly squashed my reticence.

The majority of the sauces at MAD Anthony Café are of the hot variety, but this BBQ sauce is not. On a scale of 1 to 10 for heat lovers, I would give it a 5 (the ‘heat’ rating above the review is for quality, not spice level). They also have a hot variety of their sauce that will be the subject of a later review.

The sauce has a nice, spicy ketchup like aroma. It is pleasing, but strangely unlike the taste. The sauce itself is a very dark red with seeds and other ingredients visible in the sauce. The thickness is certainly ‘up for the job’ and is fairly standard for a KC style sauce.

The sauce in the ‘individual’ size comes in a thin, glass bottle. The bottle holds 16oz and it pours easily. They also have a large jug version (see image above) that holds half a gallon. The sauce has a nice label that is simple and reminiscent of the Van Halen logo (maybe from 5150?).

The sauce had a very nice mouth feel that added to the overall experience. The sauce was similar to a ‘kicked up’ A1 sauce, with a better body and overall taste. There was an enjoyable ‘earthy’ undertone to the sauce that strangely reminded me of a mild coffee.

Chicken and poultry would find a nice match in the sauce, but it would certainly alter the flavor. The stronger meats such as pork and brisket would fare well and be enhanced by MAD Anthony’s BBQ sauce. If you are looking for an earthy glaze for ribs, this is the sauce for you.

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