Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Review: Red Eye Wilson's BBQ Sauce

BBQ Sauce of the Month Club


Red Eye Wilson’s BBQ Sauce

Manufacturer Lovera’s Grocery

Quality **** (4 out of 5)
Viscosity ** (2.5 out of 5) This is a measure of thickness, not quality
Aroma *** (3 out of 5)

Appearance *** (3 out of 5)

Packaging ** (2 out of 5)

Red Eye Wilson’s is produced by a manufacturer that specializes in Italian inspired foods. As a matter of fact, the BBQ sauce seems to be the only item that they sell that is outside that genre. Lovera’s Grocery is a family owned and run business and I’m hoping that indicates that they take pride in their products.

I’d say that about fifty percent of manufacturers use the same style of bottle for their sauces. Lovera’s is one of them. The glass is thick enough to qualify as ‘sturdy’ with an opening that is wide enough to ensure an easy pour.

Where a caricature or logo usually adorns the packaging, Red Eye Wilson’s has a photo of a man in the center of the package. Is he Red Eye Wilson himself? I have no idea. The visuals on the label are a bit boring and don’t really capture your attention.

On the label for the sauce it is listed as ‘original’. On the website it is termed ‘mild’. I’m assuming that in this case the term is synonymous as they have a ‘hot’ version of Red Eye Wilson’s.

The aroma of the sauce is pretty much tomato and sweetener. The brown sugar is a nice addition and does it’s job well, both in aroma and flavor.

The sauce offers the same opacity and coloring as ketchup, but has other ingredients that are visible. Looser than a standard KC sauce, it is still thick enough to adhere to the meat without a problem. You can feel the other ingredients in your mouth if you try the sauce without the meat (I usually try a sauce on a meat and straight from the bottle), but the feel of them gets lost when eating sauced meat.

The sauce is sweet without being overpowering and is, indeed, mild. That isn’t to say that it doesn’t offer a layered experience. There is a slight kick that hits a few seconds after the other flavors. The kick lingers for a while and is a nice addition. The sweetness falls short of that found in ketchup, which is rare in tomato based sauces but is very welcome. Using brown sugar, the manufacturer avoids the myriad problems found when using corn syrup and it is appreciated.

This is a good sauce that can be heartily recommended. For my palette I think that I would prefer the hot version, but if you enjoy a mostly mild sauce, give this a try.

Repeated from the first BBQ Sauce of the Month review:

The BBQ Sauce of the Month Club sends its constituents 2 sauces every month. The cost for a one year membership comes out to roughly $9.00 a bottle and that includes shipping. For quality sauces that are difficult to find elsewhere, it seems like a bargain. In early July I will have had enough of a sample to comment knowledgeably on their shipping.

Along with the sauce there is a brief newsletter that talks about the current months selections. The sauces arrive well packed in a cardboard box. Their site (see above for link) claims that they test dozens of sauces a month (at a minimum). This volume would seem to allow them room for selectivity.

Aside from delivery to your door and the screening by their tasters, you also have the benefit of receiving a discount on purchases of sauces that you particularly like and would enjoy more of. It seems that the discount varies, but the courteous salesperson I spoke with when enquiring said that they would be happy to let a member know what the discount would be if they gave them a call (see above for phone number).


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