Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper Hot Sauce Review

| March 26, 2021 (Last Updated: April 17, 2021)

“Get back Reaper!”, I screamed, “You’re freakin’ dangerous!” Seriously, Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper by Bravado Spice Company is really hot, particularly for a sauce with no chili pepper extracts. No, this is the real McCoy here — fresh ghost peppers and Carolina Reapers punching hard. But does the flavor here stand up to this big of a heat? And how about usability? How versatile is Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper Hot Sauce in the kitchen? We break it all down to see if this hot sauce is pure scare or a surprising delight.

Flavor

You’ve got to love when a hot sauce starts its ingredients list with two of the most potent chili peppers on the planet. Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper does just that: ghost pepper, Carolina Reaper, rice wine vinegar, aka miso, tamari, sesame oil, togarashi, and salt.

Bravado Spice Company calls this sauce an “umami bomb” and it totally is. The fresh chili peppers hit quick and hard on first bite. Though there’s a lot more to this sauce than just heat. It’s earthy, pungent, sweet, salty — truly a unique twist on flavor for a hot sauce.

Soon after the immediate heat, the rice wine vinegar delivers an earthy sweetness to the tongue that truly pulls out the natural sweetness built into both super-hot peppers. And that’s quickly followed with the red miso and tamari, both with their umami flavor. You get a delicious level of sweet and salty, smooth, and pungent with every single bite.

This sauce does come in at 210 mg of sodium per teaspoon (9% of your daily allowance.). That’s a heck of a lot. But frankly it’s the amount of sodium you need to blend in with so many delicious bold flavors here. And this sauce is so spicy, you aren’t likely using a lot of it in any one sitting. Still — for those monitoring sodium, keep it in mind.

Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper Hot Sauce on a spoon
Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper Hot Sauce by Bravado Spice Company, on a spoon

Heat Balance

When you call your shot on the label — naming those super-hot peppers for all to see — you better deliver on heat. And Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper definitely does.

These are two well-known super-hot chilies in the mix. Ghost peppers range from 855,000 Scoville heat units to 1,041,427 SHU. And Carolina Reapers dwarf even that, ranging from 1,400,000 to 2,200,000 SHU. Compare that to jalapeños — (2,500 to 8,000 SHU) and you see these are some mega-hot bad boys in this hot sauce.

Of course, Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper won’t have the heat of these fresh chilies, being diluted with so many tasty ingredients. But it still packs big heat, especially for a hot sauce with zero extracts. It’s around habanero-level heat for me (100,000 to 350,000 SHU). One SHU that’s thrown around for Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper is 116,000, and that seems about right — maybe even a bit more.

The heat moves quickly from your lips to the tip of your tongue and then makes its way to the back of your throat. From there, it builds. And lingers. You’ll feel the burn for a good five to ten minutes after eating it.

What’s best about Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper is just how well-balanced this crazy natural heat is with the unique umami flavor. It just works. Bravado Spice Company totally walks the talk of listing those peppers on the label. It’s a real tribute to super-hots.

Usability

So can you use a sauce this spicy? Maybe not as a daily driver (for most), but in certain instances you’ll be grabbing for Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper more often than you may think.

It’s really delicious with ahi tuna and sushi. If you’re looking for an alternative to wasabi for that next sushi meal, look no further. You’ll reach for Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper eagerly and often. Just be prepared for the different take on heat (wasabi provides a punch differently than chili peppers) and how much hotter it’ll be.

Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper is also a fantastic addition to soups, particularly ramen and other more exotic dishes. The dilution into the water base calms the heat some, but still provides a delicious level of spiciness and umami.

You can also cut this hot sauce with any number of condiments to curb the spiciness and provide unique flavor twists. I mixed this into my ketchup and barbecue sauces. It works very well then as a spicy dip for potato chips, fries, chicken tenders, and so much more. In fact, the umami is such a delicious flavor, you’ll often get the best of this sauce with just a little dilution into a base.

Collectibility

The flavor and heat balance alone should make this a collection staple for any hot sauce connoisseur. Really, Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper is in rarified air there. But the styling of the bottle by Bravado Spice Company is just so beautiful in its simplicity — it’s hard to ignore on a shelf. It’s clean, yet detail dense.

I really love how Bravado Spice Company ties in a heat level gauge with the fire icons at the bottom of the label. And the fresh chilies presented in the ribbon really help them jump out on first look. It’s well done branding and label presentation.

The Score

Few hot sauces nail the flavor and heat combo as well as Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper. As Bravado Spice Company rightly claims, it’s an “umami bomb” — full of bold flavors and a heat that stacks up well against it. (Amazon)

FINAL SCORE4.8
Overall Flavor5
Heat Balance5
Usability4
Collectibility5
X-Factor5
Based on a scale from 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest)

2 thoughts on “Aka Miso Ghost-Reaper Hot Sauce Review”

  1. Love the AKA Miso, Your review in my opinion is spot on.
    Anything in the food groups considered Asian this sauce compliments.
    I also got to shout out all other Bravado sauces as well. They make some flavor full sauces.

    Reply

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