TABASCO® Brand products are crafted by the McIlhenny Company, which was founded by Edmund McIlhenny in 1868, right on Avery Island, Louisiana. It was on this very island that he perfected the recipe for the iconic TABASCO® Original Red Pepper Sauce, a recipe that has been cherished and passed down through the generations. To this day, the company remains a family-owned and -operated business, rooted in its historic location.
THE ORIGIN OF THE SAUCE
During the Reconstruction era in the South, food in the region was often dull and lacking in flavor, especially when compared to the vibrant tastes of Louisiana. Recognizing this, Edmund McIlhenny set out to create a pepper sauce that would infuse excitement and flavor into the local cuisine.
PLANTING THE SEEDS
Edmund McIlhenny, an enthusiast of both food and gardening, received seeds of Capsicum frutescens peppers, believed to have originated from Mexico or Central America. He cultivated these peppers on Avery Island in South Louisiana, tending to the plants with care and savoring the fiery flavor they brought. Many years later, field workers used a small red stick, known as 'le petit bâton rouge,' to gauge the ripeness of the peppers. Remarkably, this tradition continues today, ensuring the quality of our pepper harvest remains faithful to the TABASCO® Brand's heritage.
AGED TO PERFECTION
Even after nearly 150 years, the core recipe, production process, and ingredients for TABASCO® Sauce have remained remarkably consistent. The key difference now lies in the extended aging process, where the mash is aged for up to three years in white oak barrels, and the use of high-quality distilled vinegar.
FROM HUMBLE BEGINNINGS TO A WIDE VARIETY
Since its inception in 1868, TABASCO® Brand has come a long way. While the Original Red Pepper Sauce remains a tribute to the brand's historical roots, the TABASCO Family of Flavors® offers a diverse range of nine high-quality pepper sauces, catering to a spectrum of tastes from mild to bold, ensuring there's something for everyone.
A GLOBAL SENSATION
With labels in 36 different languages and dialects, distributed in over 195 countries and territories, and finding its place in military rations and on restaurant tables worldwide, TABASCO® Brand has truly become the world's most renowned pepper sauce phenomenon.