Last week, I was contacted by Uncle Dougie’s in Chicago to review their line of bloody mary mixes on this blog. I like a good bloody mary, so I gladly accepted. The next day, the CEO himself showed up at my office with a tote bag full of not only their full line of bloody mary mixes, but also their hot sauce, wing marinade, and barbecue sauces. I wasn’t expecting to receive their entire product line. One thing came to mind – weekend bbq and White Sox tailgating. A bloody mary is the perfect cocktail for late-season tailgating, and as many of you have probably noticed, I love my White Sox. A review of their sauces will follow.
The purpose of a bloody mary mix is to take all the work out of creating the cocktail. I have tried dozens of mixes before, and never found one I didn’t have to add stuff to make it good until now. I paired up my cocktails with Tito’s handmade vodka. The first mix I tried was the spicy mix since I prefer my bloody mary’s to be spicy. I thought it would be best to try the mix in its rawest form… ice, vodka, and mix only. As soon as I took a sip, I realized I didn’t even need to add anything to it. This is the best bloody mary mix out of the bottle. You don’t need hot sauce, pepper, or even celery. It’s perfect as is.
It has the perfect amount of spice. Not too spicy to where it tears you up, and not too mild to where you have to add hot sauce. It’s also so rich and thick that I didn’t even need to stir it. The vodka floats right to the top of the glass, and each time you take a sip, the mix rolls in your mouth underneath the vodka. It’s almost like chasing vodka with a bloody mary mix. It delivers the flavor of the mix with a light vodka aftertaste.
I was already sold on the spicy mix, and knew none of the other varieties could even compare to the spicy mix. They also gave me a mild mix, which tasted very similar to the spicy, but with more of a vegetable flavor rather than a spicy kick. The Rich n’ Mild is perfect for weaklings that can’t handle a little spice.
I was also provided with their pomegranate mango mix, which I dreaded trying. I do not like mango in any way, shape or form. I cannot stand mango in anything. I think it is one of the most disgusting tasting fruits out there. I’m also not very big on the bitterness of pomegranate. I decided to have one of my guests try it and give me a few sips. I must say, for having mango in it, I actually found it to be palatable. However, my guests seemed to absolutely love it. The fact that it had mango in it and I didn’t mind it tells me Uncle Dougie’s really knows what they are doing with this mix. It is a great mix, but not for me.
One of the best things about Uncle Dougie’s mixes that makes it so great is the dedication to quality. All ingredients are 100% natural and gluten-free. There’s none of that nasty high fructose corn syrup, and all the vegetables are fresh. There’s also no MSG or chemical preservatives in any way, which is huge for me being a person who will only eat fresh. Their product lines can be found at Whole Foods, Binny’s, Jewel, Kroger, Pete’s Fresh Market, and a few other grocers I have never heard of. All Lettuce Entertain You restaurants also use Uncle Dougie’s products.
Ahh yes, but what about the hot sauce I mentioned before? The mixes were so perfect I didn’t need the sauce, so I decided to make some scrambled eggs to try it out. I love smothering my eggs with hot sauce, and eggs have a pretty neutral taste so I can really sample the taste of the sauce. I was shocked at the taste. I have never found a better general purpose hot sauce in my life. It has a really nice bite of spice to it, but not overwhelming by any means. It also has a very deep, rich flavor that masks the taste of the vinegar. I don’t know what they do to this sauce to make it so good, but this is the one hot sauce I can honestly say is perfectly balanced with spice, vinegar and body. My only complaint is they need a bigger spout so I can really lay it on my food because it’s just that damn good.