By News Staff
August 10, 2022
Focus Daily News
SAN ANTONIO– (August 10, 2022)– More than 500 Texans threw their hats into the ring submitting 564 products to H-E-B’s 2022 Quest for Texas Best competition. From coffee, cleaners, and confections, to salsas, salamis, and seasonings, H-E-B’s Business Development and Sourcing Managers reviewed a host of products for potential placement on store shelves. H-E-B is pleased to announce the top 10 contestants, who will present their products for final judging on August 24th at Dallas’ Fair Park.
THE 2022 QUEST FOR TEXAS BEST FINALISTS ARE:
1. Four Sixes Ranch, Chuck Wagon Chile Mix – Burnett Ranches LLC (Gutherie)
2. I Love Chamoy, Chamoy Salsa – Annie Leal (McAllen)
3. Lapeyreaux’s, Crawfish Hand Soap/Cleaner –James Lapreyrouse and Chris English (Magnolia)
4. Love & Cookies, Frozen Cookie Dough – Ashley Cameron (Lakeway)
5. PSR Brands, Patria Energy Drink – Guillermo Amtmann (Houston)
6. Puro Gallo Enterprises, Puro Nitro Coffee – Daniel Mezza (San Antonio)
7. Smokey John’s, Smokey John’s BBQ Rub – Brent and Juan Reaves (Dallas)
8. Sweet Boulevard, Japanese Cotton Cheesecake – Manuel Alvarez and Nadia Escalante (Brownsville)
9. Texas Iberico, Texas Iberico Charcuterie Meats – Ashly Martin, Sondra Crawford and Tim Harris (Menard)
10. ZWITA, Spicy Traditional Harissa – Karim and Mansour Arem (Houston)
A panel of judges, selected by H-E-B, will determine the four winning products and award $25,000 to the Grand Prize winner, the title of “Texas Best”, and placement on store shelves; $20,000 to the first-place winner; $15,000 to the second-place winner, and $10,000 to the third-place winner.
Smokey John’s BBQ, originally known as “Big John’s,” first opened its doors in 1976 in Dallas, TX. After a fire that fortunately caused no damage, regulars began calling the restaurant Smokey John’s and the hickory smoke smell became a signature neighborhood scent. The second-generation family owned and operated business, originally founded by “Smokey” John Reaves, is known for delicious smoked brisket, ribs, and their BBQ rub.
More than 50 years old, the BBQ rub has a completely different flavor depending on the application – whether it’s on ribs or chicken.
“At H-E-B, we are always seeking exceptional products to offer our customers and what better place to source them than from our fellow Texans,” said James Harris, Sr. Director of Diversity & Inclusion and Supplier Diversity for H-E-B. “Through the Quest for Texas Best competition, we have the opportunity to witness, taste, and ultimately share amazing Texan-made products with our customers. This innovative program not only lets us offer new and unique products in-store, but it also allows us to support local, small, and diverse businesses.”
Since launching the contest in 2014, H-E-B has reviewed more than 5,381 samples of the most creative and mouthwatering Texas-made food, beverages, and general merchandise, deemed more than 860 products worthy of shelf placement, awarded nearly half a million dollars in prize money and $900,000 with in-kind marketing and mentoring support. Quest for Texas Best alumni have claimed more than $2 million from other contests, grant programs, and angel investors to help grow their businesses. H-E-B has award 37 Quest for Texas Best Suppliers with the $1 million belt buckle, deemed the people’s choice award based on customer purchases.
Now in its ninth year, H-E-B Quest for Texas Best has expanded its search for the finest foods, beverages and general merchandise in the Lone Star State. In addition to food creators and innovators, Texas-based purveyors of beauty items, toys, home goods, household necessities, gardening supplies, coolers, and everything in between are up for consideration.
H-E-B, with sales of $34 billion, operates over 420 stores in Texas and Mexico. Known for its innovation and community service, H-E-B celebrates its 117th anniversary this year. Recognized for its fresh food, quality products, convenient services, and a commitment to environmental responsibility and sustainability, H-E-B strives to provide the best customer experience along with low prices. Based in San Antonio, H-E-B employs over 145,000 Partners in Texas and Mexico and serves millions of customers in more than 300 communities. For more information, visit HEB.com and HEB.com/newsroom.