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World's Best Fish Sauce?

Condiments

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10 replies to this topic

#1 TheCulinaryLibrary

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 09:50 PM

I've been searching for brands of Asian fish sauces trying to find the better quality ones to do a taste test and review. The Vietnamese Red Boat and Three Crab brands both seem to get excellent reviews. Does anyone have any suggestions?

#2 nickrey

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 10:03 PM

David Thompson has recommended the Megachef brand (he's the brand ambassador). Andrea Nguyen's review of the sauce can be found here.

 

I've used it and it is very good and available in Sydney.


Edited by nickrey, 30 April 2013 - 10:04 PM.

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#3 budrichard

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 04:57 AM

The Red Boat sauces are the best I have ever used.
The '40' is used for soups and cooking and the '50' for dipping sauces.
There just is no other sauce comparable, available to to those of us in the US.-Dick

#4 Keith_W

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 05:11 AM

Right now in my pantry, I have Megachef and Red Boat fish sauce. In my humble opinion, Megachef easily beats Red Boat. Both are equally salty, but the Megachef carries a bigger umami punch.
There is no love more sincere than the love of food - George Bernard Shaw

#5 Syzygies

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 12:11 PM

Here is an ingredient page by my Thai cooking teacher, Kasma loha-Unchit:

 

Kasma's Favorite Brands

 

Her favorite brands of fish sauce are Tra Chang and Golden Boy. We routinely debate this on her mailing list, and she's quick to point out unwanted additives in various other brands. In other words, read the label.

 

I'm quite fond of Italian colatura ("garum", dating to Roman times). Purist may object, along with the frugal. I like how it tastes.


Per la strada incontro un passero che disse "Fratello cane, perche sei cosi triste?"
Ripose il cane: "Ho fame e non ho nulla da mangiare."

#6 TheCulinaryLibrary

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 04:13 PM

Thanks guys will check them all out

#7 Broken English

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 05:42 PM

I'm a big fan of 'Squid brand'.
James.

#8 nickrey

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 07:03 PM

I'm a big fan of 'Squid brand'.


The megachef brand was created by the son of the founder of Squid brand sauce. It is sometimes referred to as "son of squid."

Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four.
Unless there are three other people." Orson Welles
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#9 Ttogull

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Posted 01 May 2013 - 07:21 PM

I know nothing about fish sauce, but here is an aged version of Red Boat 40:

http://blisgourmet.c...arrel-aged.html

#10 budrichard

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Posted 02 May 2013 - 05:18 AM

From an Australian review of Megachef:

"Ingredients: Aside from anchovy extract and water, Megachef contains sugar and fructose"

Red Boat lists 'Anchovy, Sea Salt' as the only ingrediants.

500ml Red Boat 40 is $10 direct from Red Boat + shipping which is how we purchase.
Have not seen local sale of MegaChef but 200 ml from Amazon is $16.99 USD.

Red Boat is Vietnamese and MegaChef Thai.

From my reading the best sauces are only anchovy and salt.
MegaChef does not seem to available in the Chicago area but if I find it, I will try blind tasting to compare.

I also can not acess the MegChef website to verify ingrediants.-Dick

Edited by budrichard, 02 May 2013 - 05:21 AM.


#11 nickrey

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Posted 02 May 2013 - 05:53 AM

From an Australian review of Megachef:

"Ingredients: Aside from anchovy extract and water, Megachef contains sugar and fructose"

Red Boat lists 'Anchovy, Sea Salt' as the only ingrediants.

500ml Red Boat 40 is $10 direct from Red Boat + shipping which is how we purchase.
Have not seen local sale of MegaChef but 200 ml from Amazon is $16.99 USD.

Red Boat is Vietnamese and MegaChef Thai.

From my reading the best sauces are only anchovy and salt.
MegaChef does not seem to available in the Chicago area but if I find it, I will try blind tasting to compare.

I also can not acess the MegChef website to verify ingrediants.-Dick

 

Looking at the bottle. The sugar is 2% and fructose 1%.

 

These are hardly large proportions. Moreover, as fish sauce is used as a salting element in the sweet, sour, salty, piquant mix of Asian foods the addition of a bit of sweetener in these levels is hardly going to impact on its appeal in the final dish.

 

I'd have to say in tasting it compared with other fish sauces in my pantry, it's somehow smoother and more rounded yet still salty.

 

A while back I made up some prawn stock and reduced the hell out of it. I then added some salt. On tasting it, I thought I'd ruined it. However, having tasted these fish sauces made from anchovies the salt level is similar. The prawn has a similar salinity level but a much better flavour. I'm going to use it in some Thai dishes to check out how it goes in cooking.

 

ps. It costs around $4 for a 200g bottle here and can be found cheaper if you are willing to search.


Edited by nickrey, 02 May 2013 - 06:03 AM.

Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four.
Unless there are three other people." Orson Welles
My eG Foodblog






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