“WE need 20,000 bottles of hot sauce and we need them in six weeks.”
That’s the call that set the wheels in motion, putting North Fremantle’s Dingo Sauce Co under the spotlight in front of audiences worldwide.
Its Widow Maker sauce has scored a coveted spot on the Season 11 line-up of sauces for Hot Ones, a show that attracts more than 30 million views a month via the First We Feast YouTube channel.
“Widow Maker is by far the hottest product that we make and out biggest seller here in Australia,” Dingo Sauce Co founder Leigh Nash said.
“We’re incredibly humbled and ridiculously excited that our sauce has been chosen to be the Number 9 hottest sauce (in the line-up).
“It’s all-natural and is made with the six hottest chilli pods in the world, sourced farmer-direct from growers in Western Australia.
“We add fresh lime juice, lime zest and garlic so it’s as much about flavour as sustained, melt-your-face-off heat.
“Hot Ones is the holy grail for all chilli fans – it’s like winning an Oscar – and we’re still pinching ourselves that this is actually happening.”
Filmed weekly in New York, Hot Ones features a celebrity – Gordon Ramsay, Billie Eilish and Idris Elba are among those who have appeared on the show – eating 10 chicken wings coated in hot sauce that climb progressively higher on the Scoville scale, all while being interviewed by host Sean Evans.
Season 11 will kick off with Aussie stunner Margot Robbie as the first guest, to the delight of Nash.
“They’ve been keeping the guest list under super-tight wraps and we didn’t think we’d know (the identity of the first guest) until the official announcement was made mid-week,” he said.
“Then a friend sent a link of host Sean Evans on Jimmy Fallon over the weekend doing a promo for the Season 11 premiere and he let slip that Robbie was the first cab out of the ranks.
“We couldn’t be happier – a super-hot Aussie tasting some super-hot sauce – win-win, really.”
Nash, who left his job as executive chef at Vans in Cottesloe to pursue his hot sauce dream, founded Dingo Sauce Co with partner Ailbhe Travers in 2016.
He said the last thing they expected was for Widow Maker to become the second Australian hot sauce to be featured in the iconic show.
“This all came by about my complete chance,” Nash said.
“We’ve only ever made about 200 bottles of sauce at one time before and we’ve not sold any large volumes outside of WA let alone exporting en masse to the States.
“We’ve harvested, processed and cooked over 1.5 tonnes of fresh chilli in the last 6 weeks, which is in itself a massive achievement.
“We were really lucky to get some excellent advice on the whole export process from Renae and Andrew at Bunsters Worldwide, another Perth-based hot sauce company that appeared on Hot Ones in Season 6.”
Perth punters wanting to challenge their taste buds can try the Widow Maker wings, Hot Ones-style, with Nash and the Dingo team at pop-ups every Thursday and Friday, 5-9pm at The Sunshine Harvester Works in Fremantle.
Season 11 of Hot Ones premieres on February 7 on YouTube.