Pepper up!
Pepper up!
Photo by The Mexican

Eat This Now: Kampot Pepper Sauce at C4 Deli

Hot Sauce Rarity Kirum Kampot Pepper Sauce at C4 Deli

So you've known and loved and gotten blotto at Chapter One: The Modern Bistro and its sibling C4: Cure for the Common Deli. But what you might've not realized in your itis haze is co-owners Jeff Hall and Jeff Jensen also stock one of the rarest spices in the United States: the Kampot pepper of Cambodia. They've worked alongside The Pepper Project to introduce the once-threatened plant to American audiences, incorporating it into dishes, cocktails and selling seeds, with a big portion of the proceeds going to Cambodian nonprofits.

And now, the boys are stocking the pepper in hot sauce form via Kirum Kampot Pepper Sauce. Don't think El Scorcho or Sriracha: this hot sauce is more like a thick Tabasco, made not just with the pepper but also palm vinegar. There is no heat to this at all--it's all about the pepper, bright and effusive and slightly fermented to accentuate its assertiveness. I see the Kirum perfect as a steak sauce (it has that umami-ness of a Worcestershire sauce) or for kabobs. Kudos to Hall and Jensen for stocking Kirum--and how long until they start working it into a magnificent dessert?

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