That cheap beer you’re drinking seems to be missing something. Something zesty. Something flavorful. Something... like Tabasco. At least that’s what K. Masami, a reporter for Japanese news source Sora News, recommends in a recent article.
In the article, Masami explains how she keeps Tabasco on hand to liven up her pizza and pasta. She was apparently scrolling through the official Tabasco Japan Instagram account for further saucy inspiration, when she found a post that recommended tipping a bit of Tabasco into a beer. The post recommends dropping a pinch of salt into a beer glass, adding a teaspoon of Tabasco, pouring your beer, and garnishing the whole thing with a lime wedge. It was a hit with Masami, who writes:
“The natural bitterness of the beer smoothed out the harsher elements that sometime come with piquant seasonings, but didn’t come close to overwhelming the Tabasco, which was present throughout the drink’s entire flavor profile. The lime helped create a refreshing finish, but still allows for a little heat to remain dancing on the tip of the tongue, reminding you of the pleasures that await when you take your next sip.”
Turns out, people have been doing this for years. As Quinn Myers reported for MEL Magazine last year, Tabasco is the “ultimate cheap-beer hack.” Myers explains that the sauce “made [the beer] taste like a better version of itself—with a nearly imperceptible kick of spice for an aftertaste.” Food & Wine reporter Alex Tewfik agreed in a 2019 article, explaining that it’s “sort of like a Michelada—the Mexican concoction that combines light beer with tomato juice or purée, lime, spices, and salt—but, you know, quicker.” Tewfik goes on to explain that, while the Tabasco-beer concoction doesn’t actually contain tomato juice or purée, hot sauce is made of vinegar and hot peppers, “and hot peppers are basically long, spicy tomatoes, right?” If you need further convincing, check out the Sora News article. And also, this will probably make a pretty good popsicle, from our experience.