Australia’s First Hot Sauce Tasting Room Is Opening This Month

Instagram / @matshotshop

Mat’s Hot Shop is one of the best online hot sauce retailers in Australia. He’s been keeping us stocked all throughout the endless lockdowns, having been around since 2019.

And now, he’s opening a dedicated bricks and mortar store in Collingwood, complete with a tasting room. It’s the first of it’s kind in Australia and it’s about bloody time.

Now we know that hot sauce makes everything better, but there is still so much we don’t know about hot sauce.

Mat’s Hot Shop carry between 100-150 different sauces from around the world at any time, all of which will now be available to try.

“They’re predominantly from the US, but we also have sauces from Mexico, Canada, Fiji, China and New Zealand,” Mat tells Thrillist AU.

“More recently, we’ve also been investing a lot more time and energy into supporting the industry here in Australia as it begins to take off. We’ve tripled the number of Australian products we now stock and currently work with over 30 local makers – with more and more reaching out to us
every day.”

Mat hopes that a hot sauce tasting destination will help to teach hot sauce lovers more about where the flavours actually come from.

“I would love just to show people that hot sauce isn’t just a one dimensional thing, it’s like any craft, like craft beer or natural wines, there are so many great producers out there making amazing hot sauce, or as we like to call it ‘FOOD that goes on food’.”

“I really love helping customers find a sauce they love and they use it over and over again, not just something that’s put at the back of the cupboard to be forgotten about.”

Mat’s Hot Shop‘s new tasting room and retail space is set to open on Saturday November 6, in the heart of Collingwood. Originally launched in 2019 as an online store, Mat’s Hot Shop has quickly grown, with a devoted following, to become Australia’s authority in all-things hot and sauce-y.

Instagram / @matshotshop

This dedicated store has been a long time in the making. Mat says he always wanted to have a physical location and that the goal was to start out online, until he could afford a more permanent space.

“When COVID kicked in and online boomed, we were able to start looking at commercial real estate options,” he explains. “All of my favourite hot sauce stores have physical locations with tasting options, to be honest it just makes sense.”

Mat’s Hot Shop has won numerous accolades and industry awards and is now ready to invite brave patrons in to taste test weird and wonderful flavours from Australia and around the world.

And it doesn’t stop there. Mat is not just a retailer, he is also a producer of some of the best hot sauce in the world.

This year his Peachango Tango, a blend of peaches, mango, spices and fiery habanero peppers—a nod to his upbringing in a regional Victorian town famous for its fruit orchards and preserves—won first place at the Mr Chilli Awards for Best Medium Hot Sauce in Australia/New Zealand.

The same sauce went on to win third place in the international Old Boney Mountain Awards for Best Medium Hot Sauce in the world 2021. Most recently, Peachango Tango was awarded first place in the fruit-based category at the New York City Hot Sauce Expo – known throughout the industry as one of the most competitive contests in the world.

The new retail space located at 204A Wellington St, Collingwood will stock the world’s best hot sauces from the most innovative and exciting small-batch sauce makers, as well as other chilli-related products and merchandise.

Keep up to date here.

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