Yesterday, we talked about the Scoville Heat Scale, which most people consider to be a heat level rating. To a degree, yes, it is a heat level rating, but it’s not exactly the be-all-end-all. Since the intensity of spicy heat is so subjective, it’s hard to develop a reliable heat level rating across different hot sauce brands.
People and peppers: Both are unique individuals.
What makes a pepper hot is a compound called capsaicin, which is what makes that burning sensation in your mouth occur. Although the SHU of capsaicin found in all Ghost Peppers may be about the same, the volume of capsaicin that is extracted from each individual Ghost Pepper can vary. No two peppers are exactly alike.
Similar to peppers, two people can have two difference heat tolerances—what I would rate as a “Hot” or a “Medium” might blow someone else away! For example, we have our Habanero Garlic Crushed Pepper Sauce, which is upper-end for Dawn’s heat tolerance. She won’t go much hotter than that. Then you have Rick, who loved the flavor of it but wanted something with heat because to him, the heat was almost undetectable! Thus, our XXX Habanero Garlic Crushed Pepper Sauce was born. So you can see how difficult it is to pin down a universal heat rating system when so much depends on each person’s individual tastes.
What do YOU think?
We want to know what you think is hot and see if there are any similarities in hot sauce heat across the board. We’re working on a survey right now that we’re going to send out to see what your preferences are. Next week, be on the lookout for a link to our survey and feel free to share it with your hot-sauce-loving friends! When the survey closes, we’ll let you know the results, and maybe even try to develop a hot sauce rating of our own!