Hell in a Bottle


The Hartford Courant, October 7, 1998

Hell in a Bottle

Don’t let them think stress has scrambled your brains if you put something like Mad Dog Green Amigo Hot Sauce on the dinner table.

Or if you feel like sprinkling a few drops of Ring of Fire in the marinade for tonight’s chicken, tell them you haven’t lost your mind.

And if bottles of Mad Dog Inferno, Tibetan Fire Sauce or Pure Hell are among your mealtime condiments, they needn’t think you’re fried.

You just know that hot sauces can be the cook’s little secret for cooling off.

Their capsaicinoids -- natural substances that produce the burning sensation across your tongue -- also can make you perspire.  And that’s the body’s natural air conditioning system.

It’s probably no wonder Christopher Columbus, upon landing in the Caribbean islands, grew enchanted with chili peppers.  Feasting on native foods, such as meats preserved with chili pepper juices, he no doubts was delighted with the tang and bite of pepper. Columbus helped spread peppers throughout Europe, but it has been today’s chili heads, as they call themselves, who’ve helped spread the word about hot sauces.

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