It may be December, but that doesn’t stop Texans from barbecuing. A quick walk around my apartment complex on practically any night guarantees a whiff of one of the greatest Texas traditions, as a hot juicy brisket or chicken is the perfect complement to a cool winter night. Of course, this being Texas, there are endless hordes of companies seeking to do some barbecue-related business, which means marketing sauces and other products designed to enhance the whole experience. ‘Cue Sauce claims to be “A Texas Family Tradition,” which suggests that this is quite the established line of sauces. I’m hoping that this sauce can join the upper echelons of the great barbecue sauces, so let’s take a look.
Brown Sugar, Worcestershire Sauce (distilled white vinegar, molasses, water, sugar, onions, anchovies, garlic, salt, cloves, tamarind extract, natural flavorings, chili pepper extract), Distilled White Vinegar, Molasses, Salted Butter (pasteurized cream, salt), Maple Syrup, Artificial Smoke Flavor, Chili Powder, Cayenne Pepper
‘Cue Sauce prides itself on being free of “ketchup products.” Honestly, I like the tomato flavor of a lot of barbecue sauces, so that’s not necessarily a must-buy selling point for me. At the same time, it won’t lose any points for doing something different, either, so long as it actually works. This sauce looks to be aiming for a sweet flavor, what with the maple syrup in there, combined with the typical smokey flavor of a barbecue sauce.
The lack of tomato sauce in this bottle keeps the overall product from taking on a reddish hue. Instead, it really does look like molasses, with a deep brown coloring and a thick, sticky consistency.
Smell and Taste:
I have to say, it is a little weird smelling barbecue sauce in Texas that doesn’t have a hint of tomato in it. The resulting sweet, syrupy smell is pretty good, though definitely different. But the flavor… just doesn’t work. It’s sweet, which I appreciate, but something is off here. The only unfamiliar ingredient here is the salted butter, which I don’t normally see in barbecue sauce. As bad as this is, though, I’m not convinced that even tomatoes could save this.
There’s a little kick to this, so I’m giving it a Medium. Unfortunately, I have to give it the lowest rating for flavor, which is a Nauseating. I just don’t like it, and not in a “Oh, maybe if I keep trying it, I could learn to like it” sort of way. I don’t like it in a “What did I do to deserve this?” sort of way.
Frankly, I suggest you buy a different barbecue sauce. There are tons of options out there, and no reason to ruin your food with this.
In the interest of unbiased professionalism, I will try ‘Cue Sauce’s Jalapeno variety later on, and I will give it a completely clean slate.