5. Wasabi Honey
Wasabi Honey is extremely creative. While I’m sure this exists in other places, I’ve certainly never had it before and hot damn, it’s delicious. Each taste provides that oh-so-slight nostril tingle that real wasabi brings without ever being too hot or unpleasant -- just a subtle reminder that the wasabi is there. Then, before your startled tastebuds can keep up, you’re left with the sweetness of the honey as the wasabi flavor fades away. I love this sauce.
4. Sweet Sriracha BBQ
If you want a masterclass in how beautiful the harmony between spicy and sweet can be, look no further than Sweet Sriracha BBQ. Though the Brown Sugar BBQ sauce is tasty, it left me feeling like something was missing; turns out that missing piece was the kick you get from roasted chilies. Though the sauce doesn’t quite taste like name-brand Sriracha, it still has the heat of a spicy red chili and it helps the BBQ flavor immeasurably. This sauce is a blessing upon fried chicken.
3. Nashville Hot Honey
Truly, there’s nothing not to like about this champ right here. Honey is wonderful on its own, but when you add some heat to it, it’s in a whole different realm. You get that special kind of sweetness that only honey can provide, followed by the flavor of tasty red chilies, and even a little bit of onion and garlic. This is begging to be spread all over a roll or biscuit. The inherent stickiness of the honey helps it cling to your fries or tenders, providing a thin but flavorful coating that most of the sauces can’t match up to. Nashville Hot Honey is a grand slam.
2. Peri Peri
If you’ve ever been to Nando’s, a South African-style chicken chain, you’re familiar with peri peri sauce. If you’re not, think of it as a Portuguese-by-way-of-South African chili sauce made from African bird’s eye (or piri piri) chilies. I, for one, love Nando’s. Probably more than any other chain restaurant (for real). Their peri peri sauce is spicy and garlicky and absolutely incredible. Naturally, I was excited as hell for this sauce.
Surprise! This peri peri tastes nothing like Nando’s peri peri. Because I am not South African, and these are the only two peri peri sauces I’ve had, it’s hard for me to say which one is correct, though I’m more inclined to go with Nando’s. Fieri’s Peri Peri (which definitely should be called “Fieri Peri”) tastes a lot more like a spicy roasted red pepper sauce. It’s got hints of lemon and onion and garlic, and I gotta say, it’s absolutely delicious. Under no circumstances should you leave Chicken Guy without it.
1. Special Sauce
Life takes us to all kinds of unexpected places, doesn’t it? Here I am, a California boy through and through; more specifically, an In-N-Out boy through and through. I wave the In-N-Out flag high and proud. Never in my life did I expect another special sauce to give In-N-Out a run for its money, but here we are.
The Chicken Guy Special Sauce is truly outstanding. It’s like a more tart Russian dressing. Special Sauce is a total utility player -- it’s thin enough to make a great burger or sandwich spread, but also sticky enough to work as a dip. Rather than throwing chunks of pickles in, Fieri has elected to flavor the whole thing with pickle juice, causing the briny goodness to cut through all the richness and help keep the sauce at a unified consistency. As far as special sauces go, this one is as special as it gets.
Guess you don’t get elected Mayor of Flavortown for nothing.