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Sep 28, 2007 06:56 AM

Hot sauce in Kensington - Jungle Boy?

Does anybody know if that guy who used to sell hot sauce (maybe hot sauce is the wrong term...sort of a tomato-less salsa) from a folding table in Kensington Market is still there? A couple of years ago I used to get hot sauce from him all the time, but then I went back a few times and he wasn't there so I've stopped going.

His stuff was always amazing and I've been missing it ever since. I think his name was 'jungle boy', or something like that...he was a huge (probably close to 7 feet) guy, so he'd stand out. If anyone knows whether he's still there or where he is now, I'd appreciate the info.

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  1. Oh yeah - I ended up talking to him for ages one time. He was selling his hot sauce and we got into this conversation where he said he could tell who was sick just by looking at them on the street. Pointed out some seemingly normal looking people who, according to him, were direly ill. We also talked about vegetable gardens and he told me that I should grow pumpkins but under no circumstances zucchinis. Or maybe it was the other way around - I forget.

    Anyway I bought a bottle of his "War" sauce. I think I still have the label up on my bulletin board. I'll go look at it later and see if there's any contact info on it. And no, he wasn't there on Wednesday and I don't remember seeing him for quite some time.

    1. I haven't seen him in a couple of years myself.

      1. Too bad...thanks for the help. He was a little strange, but his 'secret family recipe' for hot sauce (and in his case I actually think it was a secret family recipe) was phenominal. I was always worried that he would move or get forced out or whatever and the sauce would be lost forever, and I guess that's what happened. Maybe he just made enough money to retire. Sigh.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Strongbad789

          Paris — the guy who makes and sells the stuff — is still in the Market but suffering from ill health and no longer in the business if i understand correctly.

        2. Ok ok - I found the label. I still had it stuck to my kitchen bulletin board because it was so totally quirky that I couldn't throw it out. There is a phone number...mostly legible. It's the "hot line": (416) 471-9799 or 9798 (I can't quite make out the last number). The hot sauce I got is called "War" and it contains mango, carrots, onions, garlic, spices, sea salt, white vinegar, hot pepper and papaya. It claims to be direct from Paris. Let me know if you get through.

          5 Replies
          1. re: Nyleve

            I called the numbers...must have changed, because the first sounded like an office and at the second I got a fairly brusque woman who told me I had the wrong number and hung up.

            Too bad...people like Jungle Boy should put their recipes in a vault so the tradition can continue if anything was to happen to them. Thanks for the help anyway!

            1. re: Strongbad789

              You're welcome. Besides his sauce being so good, there was something compelling about him as a character. I loved his little table set up on the sidewalk. It was just a nice bit of Kensington charm.

              1. re: Nyleve

                Paris, also known as Iron Dog and Jungle Boy, left this world on Friday, August 22, 2008. A legend of Kensington, he will be missed and was well loved. He was my uncle and I treasured him. Will try to find and keep his secret family recipe alive.

                1. re: mlgregoire

                  My condolances to you and your family.

                  1. re: mlgregoire

                    Sad condolances. I will indeed miss him and I do hope that you are able to keep his name (and recipe) alive.

            2. Sadly, the gentleman who made the peppersauce, his name was Paris - he passed away a few months the legacy is gone. I still have his sweet pepper and his mango chutney in my fridge - he was from Trinidad and a popular fixture in the Market. Missed by all.