Wednesday 21 July 2010

HP Slightly Hot, Rather Hot & Seriously Hot sauces

When I was a kid growing up, I used to hate HP sauce, or "brown sauce" as it was called in our house. I'm not even sure I'd even tasted it - I think I just believed my friends who'd told me the HP stood for Horse Poo ! Then I got a little older and recognised the building on the front of the bottle as the same one on the London Weekend Television broadcasting page. Weekend Television ?! Ahhh those were the days when the national anthem played at the end of the day and TV shut down for the night ! I'm making myself sound ancient now, but I'm still not as ancient as HP sauce !

I discovered when researching this review that the original recipe for classic HP Sauce was invented and developed in 1896 by Frederick Gibson Garton, a grocer from Nottingham. Mr Garton sold the recipe for the sum of £150 and the settlement of some unpaid bills to Edwin Samson Moore, the founder of the Midlands Vinegar Company, who subsequently launched HP Sauce in 1903. If you haven't worked it out yet, HP stands for ‘Houses of Parliament’, as it was rumoured that the sauce had been seen in one of the dining rooms at the famous landmark !

I have to admit, I'm still not totally won over by the taste of classic HP Sauce but I do love the milder HP Fruity Sauce which is now an integral part of any bacon sandwich to pass my lips !

I recently discovered HP Original BBQ Sauce with its "Classic Woodsmoke Flavour" which is absolutely delicious. The label describes it as a "rich and traditional BBQ sauce with an authentic smokey flavour" and that just about sums it up nicely. It has a lovely deep flavour which livens up the blandest of meals and is perfect for a BBQ taste in the midst of winter when you can't get the real thing.

Well, now HP have brought out a new selection of Hot Sauces to complement the range. With three distinct flavours varying from slightly, rather to seriously hot, they say there’s a sauce to suit all palates, no matter what your heat threshold.

According to HP, "The mildest of the three sauces, HP Slightly Hot Smokey Chilli Sauce, livens up your food with a just a gentle kick. The ideal accompaniment to summer BBQs and burgers, providing that distinctive flavour HP is renowned for, with a mild Mexican twist.

For the more adventurous amongst us, HP Rather Hot Jalapeno & Lime Sauce will leave your taste buds exploding with flavour. The tangy sauce transforms tired chicken and prawns and will be sure to bring a little sauciness back to supper times!

Packing a serious punch, HP Seriously Hot Red Chilli & Honey Sauce is not for the faint hearted. Delicious with steaks, sausages and other red meats it’s a seriously hot sauce that’s sure to separate the men from the boys. Be warned! "

I received a bottle of the Slightly Hot and the Rather Hot varieties to test. I started with the Slightly Hot Smokey Chilli Sauce which was delicious and reminded me of the Original BBQ sauce I already buy but with a slight kick added. It definitely has a slight degree of heat to it but nothing major so even the kids gave it a wary taste. 5-year-old Juliette didn't like it (but she's definitely a red sauce kinda girl !) but 8-year-old Sophie, who usually runs around the room screeching "my mouth is on fire" whenever she tastes anything the slightest bit spicy, gave it the thumbs up !

The Rather Hot Jalapeno & Lime Sauce has a two out of three chilli rating and the heat is turned up quite considerably, as the word jalapeno should suggest to you. Unlike many hot sauces though, it has a lovely deep flavour - you're not just adding this to show you're hard enough, you're adding it because it brings new flavours to your food too !

I didn't receive a bottle of the Seriously Hot Red Chilli & Honey Sauce to test, but I know my limits and - even if I'm a fan of spicy food - I was more than happy to stop at "Rather Hot". If you grab a bottle for your next barbecue, I can guarantee all the male guests will put a hefty dollop on their plates and then say "naah it's not spicy at all" as their eyes bulge out of their heads and they break into a sweat !

star rating : 4.5/5

RRP : £1.59 for 250g

Other reviews you might be interested in :

Levi Roots New Mango & Chilli and Reggae Reggae Relishes


  1. the hp rather hot & the hp seriously hot are the bomb. when i would get my kebab from the take away i wouldnt get their chilli sauce because i new that i had the best, the greatest chilli sauce that i've ever tasted in the world in my cupboard.
    when leaving the take away with my kebab after a night on the sauce your stagger seems to turn into a quick march to get home to bleash the hp onto the kebab. OMG i've never before felt so excited in my life & when you run out you get the hp chilli sauce straight onto the shopping list, no i lie, the only reason you need the shopping list is because you can only think of one thing & that is the HP chilli sauce. So without the list you would easily forget about everything else that you were supposed to get.
    The worst day of my like was when i ran out of the HP chilli sauce, only thing i could think of was getting my fix of the HP chilli sauce. I calmly left hom & made my way to the super market as you do like. On arival the sweat had started to form on the brow of my forehead & my mouth started to fill up with really warm runny saliva (inside i new that i would soon get my fix). I made my way straight to the part of the supermarket where they store the sauce, i looked at the shelf & then sudden panic hit me, I looked up & down the shelf & thought this was some kind of sick joke personally at me. yip thats correct the creeps had taken the HP chilli sauce off the shelf & had stopped selling it, why? why? why? this stuff is my love, my everything.
    Ever since that last drop pf the HP chilli sauce i have been looking & looking for it but it seems that my love has left. Please, please help me find it? anyone with any information on the where abouts of the HP RATHER HOT & HP SERIOUSLY HOT sauce is it would be greatly appreciated?

  2. LOL Ask them on facebook :

  3. Muhammad Fahad23 May 2023 at 11:02

    Dr Trouble hot sauce is a handcrafted, limited-production sauce from Southern Africa, offering a unique flavor with its "Double Oak Smoked" profile. Made with natural ingredients, it enhances a variety of dishes and is low in calories, suitable for vegans, and free from additives. You can use Drtrouble Smoked Chili Sauce to enhance your taste.


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