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Hot sauce - who has the best?

I like to spice up my lunch, and so I often order a side of hot sauce whenver it is available. What are your favorite hot sauces in the city? I'll start off with a couple that I find in Chelsea, which is where I work.

1. The red onions at Sirtaj
2. The pico de gallo at Taco Express on 7th and 23rd.
3. The red hot sauce at Rafiqi's cart.

Please add to this too-short list.

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  1. My two favorites are:

    The florescent green hot sauce at Kwik Meal (45th and 5th or 47th and Park). They only put it on if you ask for extra spicy.

    Sam's Famous Hot Sauce at Waterfront Ale House on 30th and 2nd.

    3 Replies
    1. re: ESNY

      I think you can buy Sam's Famous by the bottle at Waterfront, if you feel inclined to carry it with you.

      1. re: egit

        You can and I always have a bottle or two in my fridge. I wanna say its $4.50 per bottle. Note: I dont think the single barrel reserve sauce is worth the extra buck or two. Not nearly as incendiary or flavorful as the regular Sam's

      2. re: ESNY

        I second the neon-green jalapeno sauce at Kwik Meal (though I asked if they could actually give a little container of it on the side the other day because I forgot to ask for it in the sandwich itself and was denied).

        I rather like the hot sauce at Mamoun falafel, which seems the same at both the W. and E. Village locations. I think that may be the only thing that may draw me occasionally back to Mamoun's after Taim's falafel stole my heart.

        It sounds like we're talking about a rather expansive definition of hot sauce to include most salsas. I'd be curious if anyone has run across a good avocado salsa (not guacamole) around town.

      3. Not exactly hot sauce, but the chili oil at Bo Ky on Bayard is addictive! They sell it by the jar too!

        2 Replies
        1. re: kobetobiko

          interesting...i am a confirmed chili oil addict...when i lived in China, it was the first thing besides ni-hao that i learned to say in Mandarin ("la-jiao-yo")...

          is the Bo Ky version different in any way from the usual?...i've been meaning to hit Bo Ky sometime soon anyway because i'm curious if they have any of the Chiu Chow dishes i enjoyed when visiting HK this past spring...so i'll likely buy a jar for my home...

          1. re: Simon

            Hi Simon,

            I go to Hong Kong every year (sometimes a few times a year) and Chiu Chow food is one of my favorite cuisines in Hong Kong. You won't be able to find the higher end or sophisticated Chiu Chow food in Manhattan, but Bo Ky has some pretty good Chiu Chow styled marinated food - their marinated ducks (no geese to be found here, sigh) and marinated pig organs are quite tasty. They also have a boiled pork kidneys with preserved vegetabels and scallions that I really like.

            People rave about their soup noodles, but to me the soup noodles are ok. I didn't like their wonton or fish balls / fish dumplings at all.

            Back to chili oil, they have 3 types. They are not really different (though the green one is less common to be found here), but I think they are better because the oil tastes fresh (probably because of high turnover). If you order food they will give you a little of the chili oil, so try it first before you commit yourself to a whole jar.

            they actually charge you fifty cents more if you ask for extra chili oil for your take-out!

        2. The hot sauce used by the Halal Guys on 53rd and 6th is very good. Good flavor and it'll blow the top of your head off. I'm sweating just think about it.

          2 Replies
          1. re: KTinNYC

            Yes! At first it looks like they skimped on the container of red sauce. Then you try it and OUCH! HOT!

            1. re: kathryn

              I agree, that is great hot sauce! I often buy bottles of that stuff from those guys! There is also a place in the village called pluck U, get there death sauce you will not regret it if you are a true hot sauce lover!

          2. The peppery hot sauce at Rainbow falafel is exceptional. There's also Amba (mango hot sauce) available at Olympic Pita. I love the hot sauce they sell in squirt bottles in the refrigerators at Kalyustan's.

            3 Replies
            1. re: a_and_w

              I agree with the Waterfront Ale house sauce, its hot and flavorful.
              I also like the spicy green sauce at the cuban place Sophies.

              1. re: princeofpork

                I miss the Waterfront Ale house hot sauce! I can't wait to return in March and replenish my stocks!! It was really hot but tasty at the same time! My husband didn't heed the waitresses warning and put rather a lot on his food - certainly warmed him up!

              2. re: a_and_w

                I prefer Olympic Pita in general, but over at Kosher Delight on Broadway they have a better amba sauce and they let you fill up your own take-away cups from the squirt bottle. It's nice to have extra lying around.

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