72 hot sauces, hundreds of visitors and 2 ‘chilli eating contest’ winners

The first edition of the Shit Hot Fest in Amsterdam was a big success. Last weekend, pepper fans and lovers of hot sauces and spicy food gathered at the Deus Cantina at Herengracht 88 to taste, meet and to stock up on hot sauces. The two-day event appeared to be a magnet for aprox. 300 visitors from the Netherlands and abroad, and resulted in a new, energetic community for hot sauce makers. “The Shit Hot Fest was beyond my wildest expectations, and the creative energy of our entrepreneurs was electric” - Neil Roake (Deus Cantina creative director)

The Shit Hot Fest happened to become THE event where creative entrepreneurs got to grab their well-deserved stage. From Clusius Tulip Vodka maker Joris Putman, cider importer Roy LePoutre (The Travelling Nut), kombucha maker BAIN Brewing (Dusty Bain) and the Amsterdam based LALA Tequila (Ambre van den Berg and Iris Sijlmans) to the 14 international hot sauce makers who stole the show. Most of them started their businesses in the lockdowns and showed their sh*t hot ideas that were born in these challenging times

The hot chilli eating competition was the crowd puller on Saturday and was set up in collaboration with Westlandpeppers. 4 hot heads took part is this hot battle and challenged their taste buds to the max to win €100 and eternal fame. Contestants from the USA, Palestine, UK and the Netherlands ate their way through14 chillies (from mild to wild) with Sara Rachdan (Palestine) and Colin Bortner (USA) winning the joint prize and crowned the ‘Shit Hot Chilli Head’ winners of this fiery contest.

Both days were busy and crowded, counting aprox. 300 visitors -  most of the visitors came from the Amsterdam area, but also pepper fans from other parts of the country and even from Belgium came to the Deus Cantina. "The pepper was even hotter than we expected. This weekend plans have been made to take the Shit Hot Fest to Portugal, the guest country of this first edition. The hot sauce makers have found each other in Amsterdam, and their community is ‘on fire’” (Neil Roake).

 Some special thanks goes to the hot sauce makers that took part in the festival and the beverage partners that helped cooling down the vibe on fire

Sauce makers form Amsterdam:
Lil’ Salsa (by A Different Story)
Sweet Heat Hot Honey
Original Sinners
T-Rex Sauces
Herbano (Roots, Rice & Beans)
Charlie’s Fresh
Pika Hot Stuff
Chilli Chan’s
Hush Hush Hot Sauce
Oh Na Mi Kimchi

Sauce makers from Portugal:
Senhor Rito
O Petiska

Ciders poured at the Cider Bar:
Decideret Cider (Copenhagen),
Kupela Basque Cider (Basque Country)
Cidre Kern (Bretagne)
Maeloc (Galicia)

Refreshment at the ‘cooling down stations’:
Fountain of Youth Coconut Water (Berlin)
Frozen Margaritas of the Amsterdam based LALA Tequila
Kombucha by BAIN Brewing (Rotterdam)
Tulip vodka based cocktails with a spicy touch by Clusius Tulip Vodka (distillery Katwijk).


We still have many shit hot plans for this year - so stay tuned following @deuscantina and 


Ph. @TristanFopma




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