Memorial Service for Second “Mrs. Sassard” Scheduled for Saturday

AR-308179897.jpg&maxh=300&q=100Gertrude Sassard, who for more than half a century presided over the production of Mrs. Sassard’s jellies, pickles, relishes and preserves, died Monday. She was 87.

Sassard in 1962 inherited the Mt. Pleasant condiment company – and the closely-guarded recipes which were critical to its success — from her mother-in-law, Edna. Although Sassard was faithful to the popular Jerusalem artichoke preparation which in 1917 inspired the commercialization of Edna Sassard’s canning hobby, she added a number of products to the line, including iced tomato pickles, iced cucumber pickles and sweet onion relish.

Under Sassard’s leadership, Mrs. Sassard’s artichoke relish maintained its status as a revered Charleston symbol, eventually showing up in television host Stephen Colbert’s standard gift basket for guests. “We have memories of eating it on hot dogs at Pitt Street Pharmacy,” food writer Matt Lee told a Sandlapper Magazine writer; Lee and his brother, Ted, sell nine Mrs. Sassard’s products through their online food catalog. Continue reading

Food & Beverage Industry Remembers Christopher West

chriswestChristopher West was a much-loved member of the local food and beverage community, but there was never any question that the native Charlestonian identified himself as a writer first: The word was tattooed on his forearm in such a way it could be read whether you were standing alongside him or seated on the opposite side of the bar.

“That’s part of why he liked working F&B,” West’s friend and former employer Garret McNally, owner of Mac’s Place, recalls. “He got stories from it.”

Before West died Saturday at the age of 40, he was working three nights a week at The Griffon Pub, the last in a long string of Charleston restaurants and bars. He was also a regular contributor to Skope, a music magazine based in Boston. Continue reading