Tabasco Guardians of the Tradition

New Orleans Eats - Tabasco Guardian's Skillet

The heroes of our cuisine are often unsung and uncelebrated women and men. Their considerable skills tend not to be rewarded with the type of fame and fortune that is increasingly part and parcel of the white tablecloth world of celebrity chefs and destination restaurants.

Still we recognize that they are the essential elements, the foundations of American cuisine in general and Southern cuisine in particular. So we have established the Tabasco Guardian of The Tradition award.

In this way we hope to bring attention to those cooks, chefs, restaurateurs and others in our various regions whose work has helped keep alive Southern foodways. We hope to remind them, the world, and ourselves of their crucial importance in maintaining those traditions on which our cuisine, our region, and our identities are built.

Each Tabasco Guardian of the Tradition is presented with a special award designed by artist and MacArthur Grant recipient John T. Scott. And, of course, we collect their stories.

JOHN T. SCOTT 1940-2007
It is with great sadness that we note the passing of artist John T. Scott. Mr. Scott, a native of New Orleans and recipient of a prestigious McArthur “Genius” Fellowship, created the print we use to celebrate the life and work of our Tabasco Guardians of the Tradition.


Ms. Dot copy

Domilise’s Po-Boys

The modern story of Domilise’s Po-Boys rests on two women who married into the business, Dot Domilise and her daughter-in-law… Read More…

Edna's Restaurant - Edna Stewart - Tabasco Guardians of the Tradition: Chicago, IL - Chicago Eats

Edna’s Restaurant

Edna Stewart’s parents were sharecroppers in Covington, Tennessee, until they moved to Chicago in 1936. Edna was born two years… Read More…

John Pawlikowski_cropped

Fat Johnnie’s

When you’re in Chicago, you’ve got to make a stop for a hot dog. Or a Mother-in-Law. Chicago native John… Read More…

Lem's Bar-B-Q - James Lemons - Tabasco Guardians of the Tradition: Chicago, IL - Chicago Eats

Lem’s Bar-B-Q

James Lemons and his four brothers grew up in Indianola, Mississippi, where their mother taught them to cook, and where… Read More…

Ken Mauthe_6

Mauthe Family Dairy

The Mauthe Family Dairy’s roots are in the Ninth Ward of New Orleans, where Kenny Mauthe’s grandfather first began milking… Read More…

Ron Kotteman

Roman Chewing Candy Co.

Ron Kottemann acknowledges that New Orleanians are captivated by the very sight of the nearly century-old, wooden, mule-drawn cart that… Read More…

Rose DeShazer White_cropped

Rose DeShazer White

Rose DeShazer White, a native in Hollandale, Mississippi, grew up eating caramel cake. Her mother baked caramel cakes on a… Read More…

Swett's - David Swett, Jr. - Tabasco Guardians of the Tradition: Nashville, TN - Nashville Eats


Swett's has been an icon of the Nashville meat-n-three scene since 1954, but the business did not begin as a… Read More…

The Pie Wagon - David Biggs - Tabasco Guardians of the Tradition: Nashville, TN - Nashville Eats

The Pie Wagon

David Biggs might have a thing for music — but he also has a thing for meat-n-threes. David grew up… Read More…

Anthony and Gail Uglesich2


On May 7, 2005, restaurateurs Anthony and Gail Uglesich retired, and with them their Central City restaurant, Uglesich’s. The corner… Read More…