Thursday, April 17, 2008

REVIEWS: Russ and Frank's Mild Sauce

Russ and Frank’s Mild BBQ Sauce

Manufacturer Russ and Frank’s

Quality **** (4.5 out of 5)
Viscosity **** (4 out of 5)
Aroma ** (2.5 out of 5)
Appearance *** (3 out of 5)
Packaging **** (4 out of 5)

This sauce was used on ribs, pulled pork and chicken that was cooked low and slow over cherry and apple (ribs and pork) and birch (chicken).

Russ and Frank’s Award Winning BBQ Sauces are a product of Iowa and if they are indicative of local products, I’m going to be spending a lot more time buying BBQ stuff from Iowans. They offer three sauces, ranging from mild to fiery.

The sauces come in an 18oz mason jar like bottle. The labels on the bottles are a tan color with mostly brown and white lettering. The labels have a nice ‘retro’ feel. The labels are a welcome departure from the overly slick packaging that has anthropomorphized chickens, pigs or cows.

The sauce had a ‘ketchupy’ aroma that was pleasing but didn’t do the taste justice. You could detect the tomato, sweetness and a bit of vinegar. The color was a dark red without variation. You weren’t able to see any of the separate ingredients, which is often visually appealing in lighter sauces.

The sauce has a nice thickness with a viscosity that allows for great adhesion to the meat. The sauce thickens over time and also seems to thicken when refrigerated.

The flavor was sweet without owing too much to the ketchup that can be detected from the aroma. There is a very nice tartness that follows the initial sweetness and provides a great contrast. The sauce lived up to the billing of ‘mild’ and could easily be used on any meat. Oddly, the site recommends using the sauce when grilling but doesn’t mention BBQ. Let me correct that oversight right now. The sauce will enhance any ‘Q you are making.

Although I’m not a fan of sweet or mild sauces, there is no denying the excellence of this sauce. I have family members and friends who are adverse to any application of spice at all. I would be happy using this sauce for them and wouldn’t feel that I had compromised the integrity of the food I was preparing.

Russ and Frank’s manufactures excellent sauces and they deserve to be better known in the BBQ community.


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