With a growing retail footprint and plans for a new manufacturing outpost on Fair Street, things at Burn Hot Sauce are heating up.
Since opening in 2015, the Santa Cruz company has spread the gospel of organic, small-batch, lacto-fermented hot sauce to more than 50 stores across the country.
Owners Amanda and Chase Heyse, who are married in addition to being business partners, are known for distinctive flavors from fiery Golden Cayenne to fruit-forward Cyklon. The sauces are all probiotic, single-origin and sugar-free—guaranteed to make you cry tears of spice-induced happiness.
What is lacto-fermentation?
AMANDA HEYSE: Lacto-fermentation is when you preserve fruits or vegetables in a saltwater solution. What’s happening is you’re creating a suitable environment for the wild yeasts to produce probiotic bacteria … You get an acidity, a complexity, that is amazing.
Do you have a favorite pepper?
CHASE HEYSE: It’s kind of like choosing your favorite song. It depends on where you are and why. If I were on a beach in Mexico, I’d love to listen to Bob Marley and eat some tacos with some serrano or habanero-bell. But if I’m on a mountain in Colorado in January and just got done snowboarding, I think I’m gonna have something more complex and relaxed. I guess a Bulgarian carrot pepper or even our Thai Bird-Jalapeño.
What’s the weirdest thing you’ve put Burn Hot Sauce on?
CHASE: You know when you bite into a strawberry, it has that perfect little hollow cup in it? Filling that small void with habanero bell or Cyklon, which is a mild sauce we make, it’s surprisingly delicious.
What are you looking forward to with this new Westside space?
AMANDA: We’re grateful for all of the kitchens we’ve worked in, but finally being able to build the kitchen of our dreams to do what we need to do is super exciting. It means that we can do more things like cooking classes, pop-up dinners, and even more farmers’ market food pop-ups.
A taste of the Triangle is back in one of its most popular forms.
Triangle Restaurant Week started Monday, offering deals and opportunities to try many of the area’s top restaurants.
The summer session of restaurant week runs June 3 to 9, with two- and three-course lunch and dinner specials at nearly 90 restaurants in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Cary and elsewhere in the region.
Triangle Restaurant Week is the area’s oldest such event, starting in 2007 and growing over the last decade into a giant showcase of local cuisine. Restaurants create special fixed-price menus with multiple courses. Lunches are $10 and $15 while dinners range from $15 to $35.
The roster of participating restaurants includes longtime area favorites like Mateo Tapas, Guglhupf and Dashi in Durham; Garland, Royale and 18 Seaboard in Raleigh; Kipos in Chapel Hill; and Maximillians Grill & Wine Bar in Cary.
This summer’s restaurant week will feature a few new restaurants, including Oak Steakhouse and O-Ku in the Dillon in Raleigh; Vic’s Italian and Papa Shogun in Raleigh; Salve Trattoria in Durham’s Brightleaf Square and The Durham Hotel restaurant; and Anise Pho in Holly Springs.