On Nov. 5 in Moody Hall at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Tabasco held an event called “Getting the Inside Scoop Behind the Sauce with Tabasco Brand Executives” from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
During the event, a Tabasco sauce tasting station offered samples of habanero Tabasco mixed with a variety of things, such as butter, to help show people how the flavor could be enhanced.
“This is our Tabasco Habanero Flavor Lab,” Katlyn Decou, who works with the Tabasco Company, said. “It teaches people about our habanero sauce and how they can actually use it. A lot of people think Tabasco sauce is just heat, and this actually expands the flavor.”
They also offered it with Nutella, to show the variety of things Tabasco could be eaten with.
“We actually go through a sampling: First they try Tabasco on a cracker with butter. The butter actually cuts the heat out so you taste the actual flavor behind the habanero, which is papaya, mango, banana, black pepper, cane sugar; it’s a really sweet flavor,” Decou added. “And then they go and taste it on a gram cracker with Nutella, and that kind of shows that adding the habanero to the Nutella gives it that fiery, smokey, fruity flavor.”
During the event, Tabasco offered seminars to UL Lafayette students and faculty from things like international business at 1 p.m. to food science at 3:30 p.m. The UL Lafayette engage website explained the general premise of the programs:
“Join us for a day as we explore how a small company like the McIlhenny Company based out of Avery Island, Louisiana manufacturers and sells 12 different types of sauces to over 195 countries and territories in 25 different languages. We will have executives from different areas of the business give us the insight scoop on how they bring seed to sauce to table,” according to the site.
The event also included a table for students to sign in. Some business majors were offered extra credit to go and learn about Tabasco’s success.
“This is the sign-in table for students for different classes, marketing, undergraduate and graduate level, and management classes as well for the American Marketing Association. So professors are encouraging or offering points to their students who come attend these presentations all day from people at McIlhenny, talking about Tabasco and International Business Day and a bunch of other topics,” Mikie Michit, a graduate student running the sign-in station, said.
The CEO and President of Tabasco, Harold Osborn, was also at the event and explained what the goal of coming to UL Lafayette was.
“The McIlhenny Company is here partly to find employees who live in the area,” Osborn said. “We’re a 150-year-old company, and we’re always looking for talent that UL has given us a lot of. I’m a UL graduate. I’ve been very excited to try to get people, to let them know that Tabasco is there — some people have forgotten — and it also helps us. We get to interview a lot of people in a very short period.”