Tabasco - By Royal Appointment

Royal Warrant awarded in 2009, I didn't realise the sauce has a long Royal patronage. I prefer Louisiana Hot Sauce myself, but the uniqueness of Tabasco sweet peppers and it's unwavering history was a story I read last year. Today I found out about it's British Royal connection.

Based in Louisiana on Avery Island, Tabasco sauce has been with us for more than 150 years. Its creator Edmund McIlhenny came to Louisiana to seek his fortune in the banking industry, but the Civil War effectively put an end to that. With the end of his banking career, McIlhenny launched a new venture, a pepper sauce.

Through the good fortune of marriage, McIhenny found himself in possession of Avery Island, a small salt dome surrounded by marshland, that had once been used to grow sugar cane and for the mining of salt when it was discovered. Salt is still mined there today by the Cargill company, 2,000 ft below the surface. The distinctive boom of explosives dislodging it is still audible across the island each night.

During the Civil War, the island’s abundance of salt led it to be the centre of a bitter fight between the Confederate and Union armies. Originally supplying the Confederate army, the Union army would try and fail to take the island. Eventually the waning Confederacy could no longer hold onto it, losing a vital source of preservation for meat and other food stuffs.

Tabasco sauce is made from Tabasco Peppers, which, shockingly, come from Tabasco, a region in the Southwest of Mexico. So, Tabasco is made from Tabasco Peppers from Tabasco, got it? Some sources suggest it might not be that simple though, that Mclhenny’s original peppers came from another region in Central or South America. The truth, unfortunately, has been lost to history, but regardless of their origins, Tabasco peppers make up the only peppers used in the original sauce. They are the only chilli pepper whose fruits aren’t dry, which is what makes Tabasco unique among other pepper sauces and by 1870, this uniqueness had been recognised by the US patent office and McIhenny began selling his Tabasco sauce. Five generations later, his descendants continue to do so.

To make the sauce, peppers are grown on Avery island, picked once they are perfectly ripe, and are sent around the world Guatemala, Mexico, Honduras, Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, and Mozambique. Here they will be grown; salt will be added, and they’ll ferment for a month and then be sent back to Avery island. The peppers, which by this point are essentially a mash, are aged for three years in oak-bourbon barrels sealed with salt. Once opened, vinegar is added, and the sauce is mixed and bottled.

Tabasco is certainly a US heritage brand, so how exactly did it find its way onto the British Monarchy’s table? It’s unclear. The sauce was exported to the United Kingdom in 1874, during the reign of Queen Victoria. While she was the creator of the modern Royal Warrant Holders Association, it would be her son, Edward VII and more specifically his wife and Queen consort Alexandra of Denmark, better known today as the Queen Mother, who are the first recorded royals to enjoy Tabasco.

Such was the Queen Mother’s love of Tabasco that during the height of World War 2, she sent her staff out to scourge London for the sauce. Her Deputy Controller at the time, F. J Corbitt recalls in his memoir — “The Queen [Mother], when she was told that there was no more Tabasco sauce, took the news philosophically.” — F.J. Corbitt — My Twenty Years in Buckingham Palace.

While you may assume that the Tabasco loving Queen Mother awarded the sauce a Royal Warrant in the early 20th century, they were jealously guarded by the monarchy and frequently only awarded to UK companies. It would not be until 2009, that Queen Elizabeth II, the current Queen, would issue a Royal Warrant.

Paul Mclhenny, the 4th generation CEO of the Mclhenny Company “We’re absolutely delighted to know that Tabasco sauce has a place at Her Majesty’s table. England has always been very loyal to us, consistently ranking among the top markets in international sales. This is indeed a proud moment in Tabasco history.” — Paul Mclhenny, the 4th generation CEO of the Mclhenny Company on the Royal Warrant

And so, a true American success story goes on. From the war-ravaged Reconstruction South, Edmund Mclhenny built a pepper sauce empire that reached all the way to the table of Royalty. The humble Tabasco sauce continues to thrive as one of the world’s most popular hot sauces. Its recipe, plant selection, aging practices and minimal mechanical involvement make it one of the few brands to largely remain unchanged since its inception.

Bonus Fact: Wondering what happens to all that pepper mulch leftover from the sauce brewing? The Mclhenny company sells it on to a pharmaceutical company who themselves use it in medicine, or perhaps, more aptly, as the main ingredient in pepper spray.
 
You left out the important bits.
McIlhenny was succeeded by his eldest son, John Avery McIlhenny, who expanded and modernized the business, but resigned after only a few years in order to join Theodore Roosevelt's 1st US Volunteer Cavalry Regiment.
and
Walter Stauffer McIlhenny (October 22, 1910 – June 22, 1985) served as president of McIlhenny Company, maker of Tabasco brand pepper sauce, from 1949 until his death in 1985. He also distinguished himself as a member of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve — receiving the Navy Cross for his actions during the Battle of Guadalcanal and retiring as a brigadier general.

 
A great addition to the ORP, the OP would know this if he had served.
 
Try finding an American who can pronounce 'Worcestershire Sauce'.
 
The only way to survive SADF catering. Went through a bottle of the stuff every four days on average.
 

Ritch

LE
How many threads has he made today?
 
A great addition to the ORP, the OP would know this if he had served.
Knob. You still upset am a veteran?

I first used Tabasco when we had access to US MREs. Made their coffee a bit more potent. This was before we had them in ours. When first joined up, a Training Major told us to take a bottle or jar of condiment (ie curry sauce/paste} and stir it into whatever meal to give the food something palatable. I used to use packets of English mustard to beef up the range stews.
 
You still upset am a veteran?
You’re a Walty lying cünt.

Your stories smack of what your dad did, are you the embarrassment that was turned away at the ACIO because you wanted to join ‘Recon’ while to date your biggest achievement is the shit stain left behind when your mother spat you out.

Stop pretending and you’ll be more acceptable. No one likes a liar.
 

Sexton Blake

War Hero
Knob. You still upset am a veteran?

I first used Tabasco when we had access to US MREs. Made their coffee a bit more potent. This was before we had them in ours. When first joined up, a Training Major told us to take a bottle or jar of condiment (ie curry sauce/paste} and stir it into whatever meal to give the food something palatable. I used to use packets of English mustard to beef up the range stews.
Say again....Tabasco in coffee?

That is a new one on me, but each to their own I guess.

I do recall being told that Tea (gallons of it and as often as possible) is how we won Waterloo/WW1/WW2 and any other battle us Brits decide we wish to turn up to whereas coffee is for yanks and poofta's only*.

*N.B. Things have probably changed since my day. And all for the better of course!
 
...coffee is for yanks and poofta's only...

Couldn't agree more. Foul stuff.

The only useful purpose it serves is to make pinging dripping quims a lot easier when they're clocked speed walking with a cardboard cup of the vile piss clutched in their girlish fingers.
 

Oyibo

LE
Try finding a Brit who can.
1. 'Woor' (as in "woor lass" in Geordie speak)
2. 'Sest' (as in "incest")
3. 'Err' (As in any incisive and conclusive post Brotherton Lad writes)
4. 'Shi' as in "shy"
4. 'Err' Passim
 

Latest Threads

Top