Rochester meat hot sauce: Part 2 and comprehensive ranking

A few weeks back, I introduced another one of Rochester’s delectable contributions to haute cuisine; Rochester meat hot sauce. See here. Just about every local burger joint and hot dog stand in town serves up its own version of the meat hot sauce and you can even buy jars of it at the local grocery stores. Last time, we sampled Momma K’s, Coach Tony’s, and Don’s Original brands. Today, we’re going to try three more varieties: Uncle Timmy’s, Zweigle’s, and Steve T’s.

Uncle Timmy’s: This sauce is very similar in taste and consistency to Coach Tony’s; a very hamburger-y taste, but with a stronger cinnamon accent.

Zweigle’s: Rochester’s maker of the USA’s best hot dogs (see here) offers its own version of meat hot sauce, not in a jar, but a combination of spices in a plastic package. The process involves browning up a pound of fresh ground beef, adding water and the package ingredients, and simmering for half an hour. Voilà! A very tasty meat hot sauce.

Steve T’s: Steve T. is the nephew of Nick Tahou (d.1997), the former proprietor of Nick Tahou’s Hots, home of the original Garbage Plate (see here). Steve has his own hots and burgers joint, but isn’t allowed to use the Tahou name, which is trademarked. This sauce is disappointingly bland and has noticeably more grease than any of the other jarred offerings (note the grease sludge at the top of the jar in the above photo). Steve allegedly follows his Uncle’s Nick’s original meat hot sauce recipe, which makes the case for refinement; the first is not always the best.

It was quite an undertaking to eat my way through these six offerings of Rochester meat hot sauce in order to put together this two-part special post, but my readers’ “need to know” comes before my health.

Let’s sum it all up by ranking the six Rochester meat hot sauces that we’ve reviewed, from best to worst:

Zweigle’s: Excellent flavor with a good degree of heat. Has an unfair advantage due to the add-your-own fresh ground hamburger.

Don’s Original: Delicious. Easily the best of the five jarred varieties. Leans towards a chili flavor with its inclusion of tomato puree and a heavy dose of chili powder.

Coach Tony’s: A bit “rough around the edges,” but a decent alternative if you can’t get Zweigle’s or Don’s Original.

Uncle Timmy’s: The strong cinnamon accent drops it just a notch below the very-similar Coach Tony’s.

Momma K’s: Unadventurous. Tastes just like Sloppy Joe sauce. Strictly for small children and adults with delicate palates

Steve T’s: Ach. Very bland and and very greasy. Tastes like liquid lard with a slight hamburger flavor.

Because he claims to use his Uncle Nick Tahou’s recipe, Steve T. boasts that his hot sauce is “Rochester’s Original Meat Sauce.”

All of the Rochester meat hot sauces mentioned above can be conveniently ordered from NY Style Deli via the link below:

40 thoughts on “Rochester meat hot sauce: Part 2 and comprehensive ranking

      1. You’re welcome! Glad I could help! In fact, I’m going to add the link to the post in case anyone else is interested in ordering the sauces, so thank you!

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I was surprised. The guy at Staples is charging only $30 for burning 3 copies each of 5 DVD-Rs. He started burning at 3:30. I just called at 6:10 and he has 11 of the 15 done. He’s way undercharging me. If I had tried to burn them at home on my old jalopy PC…it probably wouldn’t have been successful.
        Yeah, I’ve definitely noticed prices rising at the grocery.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Picked ‘em up at 7:40 and grateful they did the job. When it comes to some jobs, like plumbing, I’m happy to call the pros, although I did successfully replace that nasty wax seal for the toilet.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I love hots, too, especially Zweigle’s white hots made in ROC. It’s funny because I wouldn’t eat whites when I was a kid. When you visit ROC, I’ll take you to a burger-hot dog joint for a “Garbage Plate” smothered in meat hot sauce, the best meal in the East.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! That was a fun post to research and write. You would think that I would be sick of meat hot sauce after consuming six containers for that post, but I have a pound of ground beef in the fridge and a packet of Zweigle’s in the cupboard so I can whip up another batch tomorrow.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s true. My wife would say the same thing. I am expecting her to say it tonight when I got her A hotdog for dinner. Haven’t had them for a month and months before that though lol

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Your wife regrettably is right about hots. My wife never eats hot dogs because they are so unhealthy. I definitely need to cut back to one or two hots a week. But let’s put a hold on hyper health consciousness today! I whipped up a batch of homemade meat hot sauce earlier using fresh ground beef, water, and the Zweigle’s seasoning packet and had some on my white hot and mac salad for lunch. Delicious! The best!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Lisa Beth, meat hot sauce on hot dogs and burgers is a staple here in Rochester. Great stuff! Hold the ketchup and mustard. Only meat hot sauce and chopped onions on my burger.
      We’re doing well, thank you, and I hope you and your husband are doing well also? I remember you writing that you guys had moved out of NYC temporarily. Have you returned yet? Thank you for your prayers and I will be praying for you and yours.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Good to hear from you Tom! Thanks for the sauce tips.
        Actually, Bob is still working in NYC, for now able to work remote up to 2 weeks a month. We are praying thru a schedule, half the time in MA helping my parents and at least 10 work days in NYC. Thsnkfully, my other sister is available in MA for my parents as well. I see the Lord in this two state calling as I am mentoring a beloved new sister here in NY and availing myself to others as the Lord leads.
        This is the ‘season’ we’re in, not sure what the next one will bring, just trusting the Lord to lead! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m also a big fan of hot spicy sauces. I used to sprinkle Tabasco sauce liberally on my popcorn back when I was a young teen and Tabasco was pretty much the only bottled hot sauce on the grocery store shelves. But now there’s so many choices. I don’t use Tabasco now because it’s too overpowering.


    1. I recommend it! I prepared a batch earlier today; a pound of fresh ground beef, water, and Zweigle’s seasoning packet and had some on my hot dog for lunch. The best! I’m now good for the rest of the week.


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