McIlhenny Company Press Releases

TABASCO® Community Cookbook Awards Turn Final Page After 20 Years

My Mama Made That…Virginia Favorites Named 2009 National Winner in Awards’ Last Year

TABASCO® Community Cookbook Awards

AVERY ISLAND, LA, January 29, 2010 – In 1989, McIlhenny Company established the TABASCO® Community Cookbook Awards, a program dedicated to honoring non-profit organizations and the outstanding cookbooks they create to raise money for local charities and causes. Since the program’s inception, almost 275 exceptional books – which play a pivotal role in chronicling and preserving local culinary traditions – have been honored, and nearly $100,000 has been awarded to assist these organizations in their fundraising efforts.

My Mama Made That… Virginia Favorites

My Mama Made That…Virginia Favorites, a cookbook published by the Junior League of Hampton Roads in Newport News, Virginia, is the national first place winner of the 20th annual Awards. With this year’s national win, the South is the region that has dominated the Awards for the last 20 years, having now been honored 23 times in just the national category. The second place national winner, Herbal Cookery: From the Kitchens and Gardens of the St. Louis Herb Society, comes from the St. Louis Herb Society in Missouri. And Olives, Feta, Phyllo & More from Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Toledo, Ohio, is the third place national winner. This year, as the program is retired, a special award close to the McIlhenny family’s heart is created in memory of Eula Mae Doré, a “treasure” of Avery Island and co-author of Eula Mae’s Cajun Kitchen. Crescent City Farmers Market Cookbook, published by marketumbrella.org in New Orleans, is awarded the Eula Mae Doré Louisiana Heritage Award, bestowed upon a Louisiana organization whose cookbook celebrates the culinary traditions and history of the Bayou State.

Additionally, over the past two decades, 64 cookbooks that each sold more than 100,000 copies have been inducted into the Walter S. McIlhenny Hall of Fame, which honors books considered classics in the field. These volumes, along with every other winning cookbook from the Awards’ 20-year history, are housed on Avery Island, Louisiana, the original home of TABASCO® brand Pepper Sauce and still the location where the iconic sauce is made.

“Over these many years, McIlhenny Company has spotlighted and honored scores of non-profit organizations and the cookbooks they create for fundraising purposes,” said Paul McIlhenny, President and CEO of McIlhenny Company. “While the sun sets on the Awards, we leave on a particularly high note, with this year’s winners showing exactly why we started this program in the first place, and why community cookbooks will always play an integral role in preserving regional culinary history and traditions.”

The exposure each of the winning books receives helps assist each organization in their fundraising efforts. “Cookbooks are the kitchen tables of history, heritage, and traditions. Since being announced as the 2008 National First Place Winner, A Little Taste of Heaven Since 1857 has been a favorite purchase of proud locals, our coastal community’s many tourists, and cookbook enthusiasts throughout the country,” said DJ Femia Leeuwenburg, cookbook chairman for the Morehead City Sesquicentennial Celebration, Inc. in Moorehead City, North Carolina. “The famous TABASCO® logo, as well as the company’s valued history and dedication to recognizing community cookbooks, added just the right ‘spice’ to our sales.” And Donna Jones from the Palo Alto Auxiliary for Children in California said, “There is no doubt the 2006 National TABASCO® Award helped us. We definitely noticed a surge in sales, and profits exceeded the expectations of our membership.”

The TABASCO® Community Cookbook Awards also honor the following cookbooks in specific regions of the country:

Mid-Atlantic regional winner: Stories, Food, Life, created by the North County Public Radio in Canton, New York.

Midwest regional winner: Entertaining at Terrace Hill, created by the Terrace Hill Society in Des Moines, Iowa.

New England regional winner: Tastes & Traditions, created by the Jewish Community Center of Greater New Haven in Woodbridge, Connecticut.

South regional winner: Day in the Country, created by Chapel of the Cross Episcopal School in Madison, Mississippi.

Southwest regional winner: Treasures from the Bend, created by the Fort Bend Junior Service League in Sugar Land, Texas.

West regional winner: Beyond the Bull, created by Pendleton Round-Up Centennial Committee in Pendleton, Oregon.