With all of the interest in food these days, many myths exist about what it's like to work in the industry. The Paul C.P. McIlhenny Culinary Entrepreneurship Program is designed to encourage food start-up businesses in the area and to offer educational business training for aspiring chefs and other culinary professionals.

The Mentorship Program’s main goals are to:

  • Hold master classes conducted by chefs for aspiring chefs in New Orleans, at the Southern Food & Beverage Museum, and at other places around the country.
  • Hold “Mentor Conversations” between food professionals and culinary students. The professionals may be food journalists, photographers, executives in manufacturing and processing facilities, and other professionals working in the food and beverage industry, but not necessarily chefs.
  • Continue with our ongoing internship program in cooperation with colleges, universities, and trade schools around the world.
  • Hold quarterly informational programs for culinary entrepreneurs and start-up food business owners.

Scholarship Program

The Paul McIlhenny Culinary Entrepreneurism Scholarship is endowed by a grant from the family of Paul McIlhenny, the late President and CEO of Tabasco Brand; the iconic Louisiana-made line of cayenne pepper hot sauces and condiments.

The first scholarship recipient is Dwynesha "Dee" Lavigne and her business, Deelightful Cupcakes. Among the advantages and opportunities afforded by the scholarship, Ms. Lavigne will have use of the museum's Rouses Culinary Innovation Center by Jenn-Air at the Southern Food & Beverage Museum (SoFAB) free of charge for one year. Learn more here

Interested in applying for a scholarship? Applications will open in late 2018.

The Paul C.P. McIlhenny Culinary Entrepreneurship Program is supported in part by Domino Foods, Inc.