There was sniffling and tears during this year’s hot sauce competition – but it wasn’t coming from losers. It was coming from the judges.
Judges Paulo Araujo, Valley First regional manager, George Elliott from the Similkameen News Leader and Angelique Wood federal NDP candidate had to taste a total of nine hot sauces and three pepper jellies.
The judges started with the pepper jellies thinking they would ease themselves into the heat but were mistaken.
The group all agreed the only green pepper jelly entered in the competition was by far the best.
They would later find out it was made with jalapeno and mint. It was entered by Barbara Daly from Saanich who won best overall.
Although her favourite colour is orange. It was the orange pepper jelly that would come back to bite her.
“That orange one is hawt!” Wood said with a shake of a head and a reach of some much needed water.
By the time the judging team had tasted its third hot red sauce parts of their bodies were on fire.
“Okay, my nostrils are burning now,” Wood said.
To which Elliott quickly quipped, “Angelique, my nostrils always burn when I’m near you.”
By the end of judging the judges were guzzling water and in some discomfort.
“Holy crow my tongue is on fire,” Araujo said.
Hours later about 20 other Sizzle goers would also be feeling a bit of discomfort.
The group participated in the crowd favourite Sear Factor event held at the end of the day Saturday.
This year’s winner Jan Snarski came all the way from Vancouver to participate in the event. It was his first time at Sizzle.
“I thought I might throw up after. I halucinated a bit but it was great.”
Snarski ate the three hot peppers in a time of just 37.23 seconds to win the bragging rights and $100.
“I’ll be back for sure next year to defend my title,” he said.
Carol Bartlett from the Grist Mill and Gardens was named Chili Queen in the chili cook-off component of the day.
“I don’t really do anything too special. Just make a wholesome chili with a bit of a kick,” she said.
The 14th annual Similkameen Sizzle also included vendors, activities for children, music throughout the day and a beer garden.
“It’s been a great day. We’ve had great people come out and be a part of it and we just want to thank everyone for coming and sharing the day,” Joan Bauman, event chair said.