My husband Chris and I have our own signature dishes with El Pato as the base ingredient. I love his chilaquiles and he loves my chicken tortilla soup. We live on El Pato, it is definitely a staple in our home.
I was honored (floored would be a better word - I ran around the house so excited) when I was offered the opportunity to tour the factory in LA. I extended the invite in my social circles and finally got to meet some of the lovely ladies from SoCal Lady Bloggers. My friend Ariana was in town from Houston and got to enjoy the tour too!
Walker Foods is a true family business and has been around for almost 100 YEARS. They have 65 employees and their longest employee retired after 58 years. That's unheard of these days! Definitely a company we should all look up to! I would love to work for them!
Walker Foods, the first to produce salsa in the United States, was founded by James Walker in 1914 and has remained a family business ever since, The current company President is Robert Walker, James' grandson. The company occupies its original site adjacent to the Los Angeles River in the heart of the Los Angeles metropolitan area. The eight-acre complex covers the greater part of an industrial city block.
The company holds several "firsts"! In addition to being the first to produce salsa in the United States it is also the first American salsa to be exported to Mexico, and the first, and largest user of Cascabel chiles in the world. Pure, natural ingredients are the hallmark of Walker Foods and they are all that are used in their salsas, chilies, vinegars and mustard.
Not only did we get to tour the factory but we got to meet and chat with company President Bob Walker! He discussed running a business with us and these keys are what stuck out to me the most:
- You must keep learning
- Admit when you don't know
- Understand talent
We were amused that Mr. Walker doesn't own a cellphone (he likes his freedom) or know how to use a computer. Other interesting information about Walker Foods - all their products are Gluten-Free! Walker Foods labels are El Pato, Golden State and Walker. Southern California based In-N-Out
Burger uses Walker Foods mustard in their special sauce! El Pato's newest releases are Green Enchilada sauce and Chipotle sauce.
I was a huge fan before but learning all this information about the company and people behind it make me love it even more! We really enjoyed ourselves! (Hey Mr. Walker, give Craig, Cesar and Elizabeth raises! They are fantastic and really passionate about the company!) Huge Thank You to Craig, Cesar, Elizabeth and The Walker Family for hosting the tour and hooking it up with yummy El Pato products!
My Tortilla Soup recipe will be coming soon!
What is your favorite El Pato sauce?
That's Cesar - he works for El Pato and is hilarious! Bloggers Sujeiry, Ana-Lydia, Valerie and Kristin putting on white coats, hair nets and earplugs!
The huge wooden crates are full of tomato paste - the drums are full of chiles! Massive!
Mmm the cooking and canning room! Smelled so good in there!
Back in the old days, these were used to tie horses up while they loaded up product!
24 hour Security!
The Walker Family! They meet every week for lunch at the factory.
Ariana modeling the white coats we had to wear!
Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. All opinions expressed are my own.
Labels: El Pato, Food, Good Mexican Food, LA, Los Angeles, SoCal Lady Bloggers, Walker Foods