Going on Faith

Spring 2017

The Magazine for faith-based travel planners.

Issue link: http://digital.goingonfaith.com/i/798762

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Page 30 of 39

going on faith [ goingonfaith.com ] TABASCO SAUCE AVERY ISLAND, LOUISIANA After Edmund McIlhenny first developed the recipe for Tabasco sauce in the 1860s, he went on to sell about 350,000 bottles over the course of 25 years, eventu- ally passing on the business to other family members. Today, the factory produces 700,000 bottles per day. On the lush landscape of Avery Island, Louisiana, groups can tour the Tabasco visitors center and museum seven days a week, accompanied per request by an on- site historian with extensive knowledge of Cajun culture. According to John Simmons, a member of the McIlhenny family, the key ingredient to the sauce is time. "What we do is grind heirloom Tabasco peppers with salt, put the mash into oak barrels and age it for three years," said Simmons. "During that time, the colors change from a bright red to a deep, richer red, and from there you add vinegar." Since Avery Island sits atop a salt dome, some of the salt used in the product comes from the local mine, and visitors can stop by a mine exhibit for more information. Adjacent to the main center and museum, Restaurant 1868 enables guests to experi- ence firsthand how contemporary chefs use the sauce in cuisine, from gourmet dishes to traditional Louisianan food like gumbo. There is also a 170-acre botanical garden and bird sanctuary called Jungle Gardens that provides prime opportunities to catch a glimpse of local birds like egrets and roseate spoonbills. "Avery Island lends itself to taking a good picture," said Simmons. www.tabasco.com/avery-island HATCH SHOW PRINT NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE Founded by the Hatch family during the 1870s, Hatch Show Print specializes in crisp, minimalist designs that embody American culture and entertainment. During the Roaring '20s, after moving to Music City, the print shop immortalized many famous artists, such as Louis Armstrong, Bessie Smith and Duke Ellington, as well as numerous country stars. Though the advent of offset and digital printing hurt the business for a number of years, Hatch Show Print continued to produce traditional letterpress works, relying on its long-standing relationship with the music industry. Today, the shop produces 500 to 600 posters each year as many artists and ad agencies opt for more original and vintage designs over digital print. When groups visit the shop at its current location in the Country Music Hall of Fame, they can watch posters roll fresh off the presses in the central workshop, as well as peruse a gallery of the company's signature designs. Groups can also possible schedule a class in the Hatch Show Print Space for Design, where participants learn about traditional printing techniques through a guided demonstration. www.hatchshowprint.com SOUTH HAPPY BALLS LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY Bourbon balls have always been a popular party treat in Kentucky, but no one makes them quite like Ron and Jane Harris, who run a handmade-candy operation from their century-old Victorian home in Louisville, Kentucky. The name and recipe for the candy are derived from Ron's Aunt Gladys, nicknamed Happy, who used to make her special bourbon balls every Christmas. "My wife and I were actors in New York for 30 years," said Ron. "Occasionally, we would make Aunt Happy's bourbon balls to give to casting direc- tors as gifts." After retiring in 2004, the couple moved to Louisville and began selling the candy to help maintain their his- toric house, which required substantial repairs. "We wanted to make sure we had the best product," said Harris, "so we made six different batches and had our friends come over to taste them." In addition to developing three aging processes, one of the main tweaks that Ron made to his aunt's recipe was exchanging cheap ingredients for Guittard dipping chocolate from San Francisco and Knob Creek 100- proof, 9-year-old single barrel bourbon. While Jane handles the packaging and marketing, Ron prepares the candy, mixing bourbon butter cream with "drunken nuts," which are chopped pecans that have soaked in bourbon for 24 hours. After the balls have been chilled in the refrigerator, he adds a coat of chocolate "just the way old Kentucky ladies always made them," hand-dipping each ball with a toothpick. As the chocolate shell hardens, the butter cream sets into a moist, rich texture. A pecan is added on top as well. According to Jane, many people who do not nor- mally like bourbon balls enjoy Happy Balls because the unique aging process removes the edge of the alcohol, giving the candy more vanilla and caramel tones. www.gethappyballs.com VALLEY GREEN NATURALS SPERRYVILLE, VIRGINIA After the upheaval of 9/11, Art and Cindy Lawson DeVore decided to move from Washington, D.C., to the northern Virginia countryside for a change of pace. They bought a 1743 farmhouse and started raising chickens and growing their own vegetables. When Art brought home an old soap-making kit one day, the couple began experimenting with homemade beauty products using ingredients from their farm. Cindy started giving out her By CK Photo, courtesy CMHOF Courtesy McIlhenny Company Tabasco factory on Avery Island

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