Hot Sauce Festival draws about 2,000 people to South Austin

About 2,000 people showed up for the 32nd annual Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival at The Far Out Lounge and Stage in South Austin.

The event was for a good cause, benefiting the Central Texas Food Bank and people got to try samples from 20 commercial bottlers and enjoyed music and cold drinks.

"I'm a psychologist, and I work in end-of-life care, so I also like to immerse myself in the good and have catharsis and fun," attendee David Zuniga said.

He tried one sauce that's classified as the hottest from one company. "Easy. I'm alright," he said.

Zuniga says nothing at the festival is as hot as the One Chip Challenge.

We asked him what his tips are for anyone who's scared to try hot sauces. "Just like in life itself, relax your body, relax into the experience, breathe deeply, you'll be okay, and then have some ice-cold drinks on the side," Zuniga said.

"I would say:  don't [try it]," his friend Bryan McNeal said with a laugh.

"I really like all the shade, the hot sauces are good, music is good, having a good time," attendee Desiray Brown said.

We spoke to her after she tried a hot sauce. "It's still developing, it's in my throat. It's good, it's a little hot, but it's good," she said.

"It tastes really good, starting to feel it here and right here," attendee Max Kammer said, pointing to his neck and chest after trying a sauce. "It's got some good kick to it."

"I love just seeing people's reactions when they try a new sauce," Sarah Wolf with The Austin Chronicle said. "It's so fun to see someone either discover their new favorite hot sauce or maybe try something a little too hot for them and see their reactions. It's really good people watching."

"I love that they always do it the hottest part of the year, so you're already sweating, because it's hot outside, then you're eating hot sauce," Kammer said. "I've already bought probably a whole paycheck's worth of hot sauce."