Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Review: Texas Rib Rangers Spicey

Texas Rib Rangers Spicey BBQ Sauce

Manufacturer Texas Rib Rangers
Website www.texasribrangers.com

Quality *** (3.5 out of 5)
Viscosity *** (3 out of 5)
Aroma *** (3.5 out of 5)

Appearance *** (3 out of 5)

Packaging *** (3 out of 5)

The majority of the sauces reviewed on the Home of BBQ website are tasted alone and on pulled pork or brisket. On occasion the sauce will be tried with ribs or chicken. If a sauce is labeled as multipurpose it will often be tried with a burger or fries. We always attempt to match the sauce with what it is recommended for on the label. Sadly, I will never try a sauce on steak. It wouldn’t be fair to me or the steak. It would be a degradation to us both.

Texas Rib Rangers is much like some other sauces such as Big Bob Gibson’s, where the sauces marketing is based on the success of the competition team it is associated with. Like some of their cook-off oriented competition, they use some ingredients that you might not like to see in their sauce. Unlike some others, for them it works.

Where another sauce might smell and taste ‘commercial’ or have a ‘chemical’ flavor, the Rib Rangers Spicey (I don’t understand the extra ‘e’) Sauce manages to have an aroma that boasts of the molasses flavor instead of the corn syrup. The aroma is distinctive and a bit hard to nail down. The predominant component is the molasses, but there is more to it. The aroma is a winner.

The sauce comes in a thin topped 14.5 oz bottle. The folksy label with the anthropomorphized bull (including cowboy hat and rangers shirt) work well with a BBQ sauce. They clearly aren’t going for the elegant ‘gourmet’ look or the slick Madison Avenue appeal. It stood out visually in the specialty store where I picked it from a shelf next to dozens of other bottles.

The sauce is of medium thickness and pours easily. Dark red in color, the sauce is fairly opaque. There are seeds visible in the sauce and their light coloring provides a nice visual contrast to the dark red of the liquid. Although it isn’t very thick, the sauce had no problem with pooling or slipping off the meat.

I would say that the description of ‘spicey’ hits it right on the head. The sauce has a nice heat, but nothing serious. It’s enjoyable without much of a burn. The heat lingers a bit and slowly dissipates.

There is an enjoyable and unexpected sweetness that goes with the heat. It’s a deeper sweetness that comes from the molasses that was also enjoyed in the aroma. The combination of flavors (tomato, vinegar, molasses and heat) add up to a winning combination.

You can purchase Rib Rangers sauces at http://www.peppers.com/showitem.cfm/bbq_sauces.html