Episode 135: Perique – The “Only in Louisiana” Crop
There is a crop that is grown here in Louisiana that is not found anywhere else in the world. Even in Louisiana it is a rarity sprouting from the ground in only one parish. Perique tobacco has been cultivated in Louisiana for as long as there have been settlers, who learned techniques from the native tribe. The crop grows only in St. James Parish, where Convent is the manor town. Mike Matherne, whose family own one of the 25 perique farms, tells the story about the growth and fermentation of the plant. He joins Louisiana Life Executive Editor Errol Laborde, along with podcast producer Kelly Massicot, to talk about perique’s use as a flavorful condiment to mix with other tobaccos used in cigars and pipes.
Why does it only grow in St. James Parish? You will have to listen. Hint: it has to do with what is below the soil.