Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning Celebrates 50 Years
OPELOUSAS, La. (AP) — Tony Chachere’s Famous Creole Cuisine is celebrating its golden anniversary, marking 50 years since the launch of one of Louisiana’s most recognizable food brands.
Based in Opelousas, Tony Chachere’s began as a retirement hobby for the brand’s namesake, Tony Chachere.
Chachere was known as a hunter and fisherman around Opelousas, and he had a lifelong dream of writing a cookbook of Creole recipes. When the 65-year-old retired for the second time in 1972, he finally realized his dream, writing the famous Cajun Country Cookbook. Chachere originally sold the book out of his station wagon.
“What started as my great-grandfather’s life-long dream has now become a devoted mission for four generations of the Chachere family,” said Celeste Chachere, director of marketing for Tony Chachere’s, in a news release. “Making the flavors of his beloved Cajun and Creole cuisine accessible to the world beyond Louisiana is what Mr. Tony was most passionate about, and we are continually looking for new ways to bring more flavor to every meal people eat, just as he always dreamed.”
Considered to be an “Ole Master” of Creole cooking, Tony Chachere included in his cookbook a recipe for his homemade seasoning. When people began asking where they could buy the spice mix, Tony Chachere’s Famous Creole Cuisine began to form.
Tony Chachere partially retired again in 1981 at the age of 76, but he continued to toy with his recipes and create new products for the brand. His seasoning has been used in cookbooks across the world, in cooking contests and movies, the company said in a release.
In 1995, Tony Chachere was the first person to be inducted into the Louisiana Chefs Hall of Fame. He died a week later, three months short of his 90th birthday.
The nationally known brand is still family-owned and operated. Tony’s grandson, Don, now leads the company, which operates out of a 150,000-square-foot facility with more than 100 full-time employees.
As part of the 50th anniversary celebration, Tony Chachere’s is selling commemorative cans of the Tony’s Original Creole Seasoning. The can can be ordered at www.tonychachere.com.
By William Taylor Potter for the Associated Press