Technology with attitude

Horsetooth Hot Sauce: A soon-to-be Colorado favorite


Fort Collins, Colorado – According to Native American legend,  Horsetooth Rock in Fort Collins, CO, is not a rock at all, but the heart-turned-to-stone of a great warrior slain by a slightly greater warrior during a fierce battle.  However, the Horsetooth Hot Sauce company has a different interpretation of how the events really went down.  According to their version of the legend, the two warriors were in fact good buddies who ended up fighting over the last drop of Horsetooth Hot Sauce.  Therefore, Horsetooth Hot Sauce advises everyone to keep plenty of sauce on hand, and of course to never fight with your friends.  After you taste a bottle of their sauce, you will understand way their interpretation may not be very far off from the truth after all.

Horsetooth Hot Sauce is run by owners John and Allie Comeau (with some inspiration from their Blue Heeler Rubin).  The sauce flavors are a result of John’s Chicago-influenced thoughts that simple heat is the best when it comes to hot sauce.  He doesn’t use random chunks of ingredients in these sauces either.  Each spice and ingredient has been carefully selected and blended to provide a delicious (and very spicy) flavor.  The process is supported by Allie (Horsetooth Hot Sauce Creative Director) who is also a writer by trade.  Both of their love for hot sauce knows no bounds, and the great flavors of these sauces are proof of that.

Horsetooth Hot Sauce currently bottles four different tongue-torching flavors in stock.  They include:

  • Rubin’s Red – Named after the Comeau’s feisty Blue Heeler, this sauce provides a more mild spice, but with a lot of flavor.  It is made from prized cayenne peppers along with fresh black peppercorns and garlic.  This sauce is absolutely great, and I recommend it for anyone who likes the taste of hot sauce, but doesn’t like feeling like they are burning off their taste buds.
  • Naughty #4 – This uniquely flavored sauce is the next step on the spicy scale.  With a tangy mango taste and a fiery aftertaste, this one is the best of both worlds, and perfect for anyone who likes their sweet along with their spice.  I personally don’t think I have ever tasted a hot sauce quite like this.  When you first eat it, you automatically can taste the fruity mango taste.  Then the surprise comes when the spice kicks in.  This one is definitely recommended for people seeking something unique and out of the ordinary.
  • The Green – This sauce is what begins to separate the men from the boys (or women from the girls).  Even though it has a calm green color, this sauce is on fire.  This sizzling sauce combines green habaneros and serranos with juicy tomatillos, garlic and onion.  The great taste is not lost under the heat either, which makes this sauce a great combination of flavor and face-burning.  This was tied for my favorite flavor, and is great for the more adventurous eaters when it comes to spicy foods.
  • Rubin’s XXX – Adding red habaneros to the previous Rubin’s Red mix of cayenne peppers, black pepper, and garlic, this sauce is not recommended for those who may have existing heart conditions (or tongue conditions in this case).  According to their website, this one should really come with a parental warning, and is the NC-17 rating equivalent in the hot sauce world.  This flavor is recommended for the extreme eaters who love torturing their taste buds until their faces turn red and they gets tears in their eyes.  Good flavor nonetheless!

Although this hot sauce is not currently available within Denver itself(to the best of my knowledge), Horsetooth Hot Sauce can be found at a variety of restaurants and stores around Colorado, including the following in Fort Collins, Loveland, Boulder, and beyond:

Stores in Fort Collins:

  • The Food Co-op
  • Jax Outdoors
  • Albertsons (all 3 in Fort Collins)
  • The Cupboard
  • Beaver’s Market
  • Choice City Butcher & Deli
  • Whole Foods

Restaurants in Fort Collins

  • The Island Grill
  • Silver Grill Cafe
  • Horsetooth Hideaway
  • The Pickle Barrel
  • Rainbow Cafe
  • Trailhead tavern
  • Vern’s Place
  • Dempsey’s
  • The Back Porch
  • McCoy’s Morning Glory’s

Stores in Boulder:

  • Whole Foods (Pearl St. & Broadway St.)
  • Ideal Market (Alpine Ave.)

Stores in Loveland:

  • Albertsons (on Eisenhower)
  • Kitchen Alley

Find them in person at:

  • Drake Road Farmer’s Market on Saturdays (Drake & Shields)
  • Fort Collins Farmer’s Market on Sundays (Harmony & Lemay)
  • Loveland Farmer’s Market on Tuesdays (N. Garfield by Hobby Lobby)