Hello! This go round I have another salsa from Texas. It is also another salsa that I have never tried before, so it should be interesting for all of us! It is supposed to be hot, so I am curious to see if it lives up to the rating. The only link for you this time is at the bottom, and it is a direct link to the company. It would appear that they only sell out of grocery stores, but maybe if you contact them they could do some jars direct to your door. By the way, it sounds like they have been making this salsa since 1979, so it should be quite perfected by now.
Bottle Design and Label
The jar is of a normal shape with a wide mouth. It should be easy to consume straight from the can, but it’s not the widest mouth design on the market. The lid is a simple brushed gold design, and it contains no markings. It matches the label pretty well though, so it’s just fine.
Moving on to the label, it is pretty simple as well. The background looks like a tortilla chip perhaps, or possibly some stucco wall. There is a green stripe around the top left corner and a red stripe around the bottom right corner. In a corresponding color scheme, Manuel’s is written in green along the top and salsa is in red across the bottom. All the other words on the label are in black.
To the left a bit there is a sombrero and some crossed pistols. This is where the start date for the salsa is emblazoned, as well as a short paragraph about the company. A bit further to the left is the nutrition facts.
Over on the right end of the label is simply the ingredients list and the contact information for the company. Also towards the right side is the hot scale I suppose, although it only consists of three red peppers. I can see some more room for more peppers, so perhaps they make a hotter salsa as well. Their website is a bit sparse on information though, so I couldn’t really say for sure…
Smells and Visuals
Peering through the glass I see a nice brownish red tint of tomato. I can see little bits of green that must be jalapeno peppers. There is a plethora of seeds peering back at me, I hope they add a nice crunch to the mix. It is interesting to note that they use a tomato sauce and not whole tomatoes. I’m guessing that this salsa is going to be small pieces throughout. I also can see some little clear pieces and little white bits. I’m guessing that is the onion and some pieces of seed that got ground up.
Popping the top I can immediately smell the tomatoes. They smell sharp and tangy. That is all I can really smell, but for some reason my nose is telling my brain that this will be pretty hot… The longer I try to pick out different smells the less I smell altogether. Must be time to dive in!
Taste Texture and Heat
First off, yes, it brings some heat! That’s actually the second thing I noticed though. First thing I noticed was the texture. The tomatoes are quite ground up, but the jalapenos still have a nice crunch. Even though the tomatoes are quite pulverized they still manage to add some texture somehow. It’s like a grainy texture that is hard to explain without making the salsa sound bad. I suppose it’s kind of like a runny tomato paste with bits of jalapeno and seeds lending crunch and depth to the texture. I suppose it now makes sense why they call it a tomato sauce on the ingredients list…
The salt level is right on, if perhaps a bit much. I think on a salty chip it might be a touch overdone. The tomatoes are pretty mild, they only have a slight touch of tang. However, the heat rushes in pretty quick and takes over, so it is hard to gauge many flavors after it hits. There is perhaps a touch of bitter right at the beginning, but I can’t tell if it is a flavor coming off something, or just the heat coming on.
Ok, let’s talk about the heat… I think calling this hot is probably right on the money. After perhaps eight bites I have a hot head! My face is sweating all the way to my ears. My scalp feels hot. My nose is running away. My mouth is all tingly and hot. It comes on quick and hard, but quickly mellows to a glowing aftermath. It fades out in a reasonable time, but lingers for a while in a subdued fashion.
Nutrition Facts and Ingredients
If you’re looking for a pretty hot salsa, then this would be a good one to grab and give a try. The texture is a bit different, but not bad by any means. The seeds and jalapenos really lend to the texture and make it enjoyable. The salt could be a bit much for some, but it’s not overbearing. I think this might be a great ingredient, not for the textures, but for the heat level. I think it would probably be a good addition to anything requiring salsa. I’ll slap it on some eggs and report back!
Edit! I have had this salsa on chips, eggs, and beans. I liked it on the eggs and beans, not so much on the chips. On the eggs and beans it still has some heat, but is a bit more tame. On the chips it was still pretty flammable, and I think a bit too salty as well.
Thanks for stopping by, feel free to comment, cass.
Not an affiliate link. Manuel’s Son Of A Gun Salsa.