My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

How Tabasco Gets Made

March 19, 2019

A little after noon, I was ready for another adventure, just down the road from Jungle Gardens.  I went to the Tabasco Factory for a self-guided tour.

I started my tour in the museum which has photos and artifacts showing the history of the Mcilhenny family as well as how Tabasco has influenced  our culture.

The exhibits were mostly in this format and not easy to photograph through their glass boxes

The first two stops were adjacent. Number 1 was the barrel storage building. there the pepper mash is stored for up to three years. There is salt on top of the barrels to keep molds from getting into the mash. 

I expect this wall of barrels was empty

The filled barrels ran a LONG ways back in the dimly lit building

The next stop was the greenhouse.  It is where the peppers are started, before planting in the fields.  I think this is mostly for show now and peppers are maintained in various ages, from seedlings to ones making peppers. 

The smallish greenhouse

I had to take this through a glass which changed the colors. But got a bloom and a baby pepper. 

We followed these little signs to find the sites. 

One of a few pieces of art along the tour route

I was amazed to see this sign along the sidewalk

Part of the factory that was not on the tour
After the mash has aged, it is mixed with vinegar, getting stirred occasionally over a three week period.

I enjoyed these huge peppers in the entry to the blending building

The room where the mash is mixed with vinegar as seen from an upstairs balcony

This is how we found the sites

One of the sites had huge bottles of each kind of sauce Tabasco now makes ,as well as lots of memorabilia

Avery Island rests on top of a salt dome.  One of the stops was a reproduction of how the salt was mined.

This feels like one is underground

Finally we got to the building where the sauce is bottled and packaged for shipping. I was there when the line wasn't operating so didn't really understand how it all fit together.

Part of the bottling operation

Another view

I think this was the packing area

This must be the brain center

There was a little restaurant on site with every flavor of Tabasco sauce on each table 

And then there is the little country store - you can buy barrels here

And you can buy sizes of each kind of Tabasco up to one gallon as well as other mementos

The factory was in this long line of mostly connected buildings