Meet Me at the Markets is a recurring series highlighting the stories behind the many vendors and food producers who make up the Kelowna Farmers' & Crafters' Market.
The heat in Kelowna can be brutal, and so can the hot sauce. But in a good way!
Brutal Condiments is a local company recently kick started by Hayden Duval, an avid fermenter with goals to bring a quality over quantity style hot sauce to the Okanagan.
He says he's been perfecting a number of different sauces for all hot sauce lovers. Whether you’re sensitive to heat or love to load on the spice, Duval has flavours for all heat levels.
His selection of Brutal flavours includes a handful of different and unique styles ranging from mild to hot with a wide range of peppers.
"As far as mild goes, you have the jalapeno and the thai chili. It’s hot, but the heat goes away pretty quick. After that, you’re jumping in with the heavyweights. It gets hot,” said Duval.
“Red Habanero was one of the first sauces I ever made and it’s my favourite for sure. It’s got this nice smoky flavour. The fermentation process creates this smoky flavour and it’s hot with some nice fruity flavours in it too.”
Crazy for hot sauce, Duval had been experimenting for years, but decided to get into the business after a worldwide sriracha shortage last year.
"I was like, I think I can make hot sauce, so I tried it out... and now I have this whole thing,” Duval added, gesturing at his booth at the Kelowna Farmers' & Crafters Market.
Duval says he loves fermenting, but that the process of creating his hot sauce can be brutal.
“I get the peppers, de-stem them, send them through a food processor, add salt, put them into the fermenters, and then I’ll just let it sit until all the fermenting magic happens," he said, explaining his sauces are fermented for six months to a year, but he's pushing for longer.
“I add the vinegar to stop the fermentation, and then blend it up, bottle it up, and boom, it’s done… It takes time to make these complex flavours.”
Brutal Condiments has other hot sauce flavours currently in the works, as well as three soon to be released mustards.
You can find a bottle of Brutal at the Kelowna Farmers’ & Crafters’ Market, the East Kelowna Market, DunnEnzies Pizza and Simps Modern Beverage.