Friday, July 11, 2008

Review: Bryner's Classic Hot Sauces

This has been a particularly busy year for me so far and as a result I have gotten quite behind in my hot sauce reviews. I figured this was a perfect opportunity to thin the “to be reviewed” shelf by doing a two-for! Today’s review is a pair from Bryner’s Classics; Bryner’s Best & Momma’s Mild. With two at once your gonna have to try’ in keep up now. So here we go!

Initial Impression: First impressions can be deceiving. I have to admit I was not overly impressed by the overall look and feel of these sauces. That is part of the reason this sauce has been sitting on my shelf for so long. While the actual sauce inside the jars looks great the packaging had me constantly reaching for other selections. I guess it’s true; you really do eat with your eyes first. The smudgy, homemade labels were just not enough to make me want this sauce.

Ingredients: “Bryner’s Best”: Carrots, Vinegar, Peppers, Water, Onions Garlic, Sweeteners, Citrus Juices, Salt & Other Spices.“Momma’s Mild”: Carrots, Vinegar, Peppers, Water, Onions, Garlic, Sweeteners, Citrus Juices, Salt & Other Spices.

Interestingly enough both jars contain the exact same ingredients? Huh, that’s odd? The other thing that stands out to me is “Sweeteners”. Is it sugar? Corn syrup, cane juice, agave, Splenda? What is the secret? I’m pretty sure the FDA would insist that there are no mystery ingredients allowed in a product packaged for sale to the public. Anyways, the list is clean and looks good!

Appearance: Aside from the color; both of these sauces have pretty much the same appearance. They are both nice and thick and pile up on the plate when poured. Both sauces are smooth yet a bit pulpy, and neither sauce has any seeds or particles floating around in it. When left to sit a minute in the plate the liquid began to run out from around the edges of the sauce. Be sure to shake this one well before applying.

Aroma: “Momma’s Mild” is just that in the aroma department. It has a vinegary tang up front and if you Hoover on it some more you will pick out some onion and garlic. The “Bryner’s Best” on the other hand wallops your nose with aromatic spices. There is a definite soy and Worcestershire aroma to this sauce yet neither is listed in the ingredients. The garlic stands out a bit more in this flavor. Let’s Eat!

Taste: Momma’s Mild is certainly mild, with only the slightest warmth the sweetness comes to the forefront. Right after the sweetness there is a vinegary tang that hit me so hard I winced. The warmth of the peppers comes through in the finish along with some garlicky tones.

Bryner’s best is a completely different sauce despite the ingredient declaration similarities. The first flavors that rush over your taste buds are a smoky, sweet, steak sauce type of flavor. The sweetness and heat come in together in the center of your tongue and the finish is a long, garlicky flavor.

The Food Test: Moussaka! No, that is not some kind of Middle Eastern curse word. It is a Greek dish made of layers of eggplant, zucchini, mushrooms, ground beef, with sauce and Mediterranean spices. As it turns out, Moussaka is a great pallet for these two sauces. I started with a nice blob of each on separate pieces just to try it out. In the end I poured about a quarter of each bottle on my wonderful meal. The Moussaka’s blend of flavors and spices was able to tone down the sweetness of the sauces and the other flavors were able to shine through.

Conclusion: Whether you like it mild and sweet, or on the spicier side; Bryner’s Classics has a flavor that will suit your taste. They grow their own peppers and have been making this sauce for the past twenty years. There are no preservatives or artificial ingredients. If you go to their site at you can even get a pack with each of their flavors for free!

Packaging 1/10 – Homemade, smudged.
Aroma 7/10 – Fresh & Tangy

Appearance 10/10 – Smooth & Sexy
Taste 6/10 – A Bit on the Sweet Side
Heat 5/10 –Momma’s is a 2.

Overall 6/10


Tom Aarons said...

I love it that you really took the time t check these out thoroughly and do a serious review. Bravo!

Bryner Jr. said...

Wait til you try to revised sauce's, especially the simply habernaro and melina's extreme. I have been trying to convince them of the tacky label, and that is my department for redevelopment in the near future....