I’m going to deviate from my normal method of reviewing hot sauces, the whole first impression and taste and heat blah blah blah. This is Sriracha! We all know it, we all love it! Instead, I’m going to focus on how it stacks up to the king (for us Americans at least) Sriracha, the lovingly nicknamed Rooster Sauce.
The big difference between the two sauces is that Trader Joe’s version is more garlicky (I do love me some garlic), less spicy (still has a little bite) and it’s a bit thinner…and for those that care it’s preservative free which is a plus in my book. The garlic and thinner texture is closer to more traditional Sriracha found in Thailand since they use the sauce more for dipping or for soup and not for putting on pizza and other foods like we do. You taste the pepper on the back end but it’s not overly strong.
I compared the two sauces on pizza, eggs (cooked in bacon fat of course), chili and a simple ham and cheese sandwich. Rooster sauce is the clear winner on Pizza, the garlicky taste of Trader Joe’s was a little bit strong for the pairing. On the eggs there was no clear favorite for me as both were delicious; it just depends on your mood that day. Surprisingly the Trader Joe’s sauce was better in the chili for the exact reason it wasn’t as good on pizza. On a sandwich…well who cares, just give me some heat and added flavor and I’m happy. You can pick your poison for that one.
So does this sauce dethrone the king? Nope, but that’s partially for nostalgia reasons. However, does this deserve a place in the Sriracha rotation? Hell yeah it does. Both of these sauces are delicious and both worked well with everything I put them on, despite my personal preference one way or the other. I’ve seen some people recently saying that they thought this sauce was bland or that it tastes like “ass” but they’re obviously deranged individuals and should not be taken seriously. If you love Sriracha, go pick up a bottle, it’s only 3 bucks and you won’t regret it. If you don’t love Sriracha…well….BUY THIS SAUCE