Just out of interest, and because I tend to forget the finer points of chilli talk when I need them to discuss them with friends (usually over a few beers the talk eventually leads to food, and then to chilli) I have placed the handy heat reference to help right here.
The 'heat' of a chilli is traditionally measured by the amount of capsaicin it contains. Obviously the 'heat' perception will vary from person to person as people have a differing density of taste buds, and therefore nerves to send the heat messages to the brain. Also regular chilli eaters are somewhat acclimatised to these fiery signals.
This 'heat' rating is measured in Scoville Heat Units or SHU. This is indicated on the Scoville scale (After its inventor, Wilbur Scoville), see below.
|Scoville rating||Type of pepper|
|8,600,000–9,100,000||homocapsaicin, homodihydrocapsaicin, nordihydrocapsaicin|
|5,000,000–5,300,000||Pepper Spray ( Law Enforcement Grade )|
|855,000–1,050,000||Bhut / Naga Jolokia|
|350,000–580,000||Red Savina Habanero|
|100,000–350,000||Habanero chili, Scotch Bonnet Pepper, Datil pepper, Rocoto, African Birdseye, Madame Jeanette|
|50,000–100,000||Thai Pepper, Malagueta Pepper, Chiltepin Pepper, Pequin Pepper|
|30,000–50,000||Cayenne Pepper, Ají pepper, Tabasco pepper, stronger Chipotle peppers, Cumari pepper|
|10,000–23,000||Serrano Pepper, weaker Chipotle peppers|
|2,500–8,000||Jalapeño , Guajillo, Anaheim pepper, Paprika|
|500–2,500||Poblano Pepper, Rocotillo Pepper|
The Chilli Seed Bank
If you are interested in obtaining hard to get varieties, including the worlds hottest, you can order seeds ( or other quality chilli products ) from the Chilli Seed Bank. They have easy ordering with various payment options for both Australian and international customers!
Keep an eye out for this site opening soon hailed as being 'the ultimate chilli resource' mouthburners.com should be more good news for chilliheads everywhere.