Duke's Stories

Real life stories from Duke's loyal customers. Enjoy what others have sent to us, or share your own Duke's story with us.

I wish I had known there was a family ties contest! Before I found out that I had family ties to the Dukes, I fell in love with the flavor of Dukes. My Great-Grandmother lived across the street in Greenville from Ms. Duke. My Great Uncle Harry, when he was very young, would go across the street to retrieve the egg whites that Ms. Duke did not use to make her mayonnaise. Ms. Duke made her own mayo to put on the sandwiches she would make to feed the workers for lunch. My Great-Grandmother would take the egg whites and make meringue for her pies. They worked together during the depression to feed the workers. I heard this story at a family reunion in 2001 from my Uncle Harry. What pride I felt when he told this story! Knowing that Duke's was my favorite mayo and now I have ties to my favorite mayo! Who could ask for more!! I can! I have perfected my recipe for potato salad, with Duke's of course, and might I say, it is the BEST potato salad I have ever tasted!!! And I have eaten Tim's famous potato salad at his Rib Joint in Dacula, Ga. ( Tim, your ribs are the best I have ever had!! Bar None! BUT, my tater salad is SMOKIN!!) Thanks for keeping this GREAT RECIPE going!! I have been all over this country and there is none better!!

— Jeffrey W. Smith, Avon Park, FL

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My family moved from New Jersey to Atlanta in 1962 when I was 7. I soon met Herbie, whose mom made the best sandwiches, and would always trade with Herbie at school because they were soooo good. Alas, Herbie's family moved and so did that great 'taste'. Years later and on my own, I thought back to those sandwiches and went on a quest to find that 'taste' which I figured had to be the mayonnaise. I grew up in a Hellmann's house and that wasn't the taste, neither was any other brand I tried. 10 years ago I married a great southern lady. She made me a sandwich and after taking a bite, I yelled out, "That's the taste!" Of course it was Duke's, now the only mayo allowed in the house. It only took 40 years to find that taste. Thank you Duke's!

— Robert Collins

Thank you so much for continuing to bottle your mayonnaise in 32 ounce jars. I have always used Hellmann's or Kraft mayonnaise, but not anymore. They lowered their ounces to 30 and upped their prices. Now I use Duke's all of the time and I like it a lot better. I like its creaminess and taste. I can't believe I wasn't using it all along. Thank you again.

— Nancy Moon

I wanted to say that I WAS a Miracle Whip user FOREVER. However, 3 years ago I moved to Georgia and discovered DUKE'S and never looked back. I swear this is the BEST mayo I have ever tasted HANDS DOWN. I had family members recently who swore by Hellmann's and when they tasted my potato salad with Duke's they couldn't believe it. They don't get Duke's up North apparently. I just wanted to say they emptied my pantry, but I thought you should know that I so appreciate the quality of this product.

Thanks so much,

A loyal customer for life.

— Melissa Yvonne Berger

Growing up in rural North Carolina, no other mayonnaise was allowed in the kitchens of either of my great grandmothers, grandmothers, or my moms. I had the luxury of growing up with those women and their food, and on every single recipe card it says "Duke's Mayonnaise". To me, it doesn't just taste great, it tastes like home.

— Nicholas Byrd, Mebane, NC

I just wanted to let you know that your commercial works. I had never heard of Duke's Mayo until recently when I started seeing your commercials on TV. They were so inviting and interesting that I decided to try the mayo. I have NEVER done this before -- that is, try a new product because of something I have seen on TV. I don't even watch that much TV. But your commercials made me want to try your mayo. I was born and raised in Texas, and the homey feel of your commercial struck a chord with me. Well, I did give it a try, and I just LOVE this mayo. I have been a lifetime fan of Hellmann's and never would have thought of using any other mayo. However, I am now a Duke's convert. I don't know what it is, but this mayo is better. Much better. I am enjoying a sandwich right now, slathered with Duke's, which is why I got inspired to write this. I also have shared my experience with many of my friends and relatives, and they are now Duke's converts as well. Interestingly, whenever, I have started telling them my Duke's story and the attraction to the commercial, every single one of them has said something like "oh yeah, I've seen those commercials. I have thought about trying that mayo as well because of them." I have urged them to follow up on that though, and every single one of them has agreed that Duke's is the best and have made the change. So, mostly, I just wanted to let you know that your commercial is great and doing exactly what you are paying it to do -- getting some Duke's converts!! Thanks for the great commercial; but more importantly, thanks for the great product!

— Gail Clifton, Myakka City, FL

I take great pride in my southern heritage, but I have never really liked mayo -- I preferred Miracle Whip. Your commercial inspired me to try Duke's, and now I'm sold. It makes everything better, and as odd as it may sound, the great quality and value just helps to build my southern pride.

— Alan Camp, Villa Rica, GA

I feel that I owe Duke's a great debt of gratitude and I am writing to express my sincerest thanks.
From the time my wife and I have been together, she has made what is thought by many to be the best potato salad and cole slaw around (in particular by me..lol). She would make huge batches of both and I would BBQ ribs. We were set for days. She always used Kraft Mayo and would use nothing else. In recent years she would say that something just didn't taste right and that the texture wasn't right either. She tried different types of potatoes, tried to pick younger, fresher cabbage, and everything in between to get it right again. No luck. my wife stopped making potato salad and cole slaw almost altogether. I cannot even begin to tell you how dissappointed I was. One day she realized the mayo she was using just didn't seem to be the same. She went online and started doing research to see if anyone else had noticed a change in Kraft. She found days' worth of reading from people with the same complaint. More importantly, she found people recommending Duke's Mayo and swearing they would never use anything else. So, we bought a small jar to try.
We have both now joined the ranks swearing by Duke's and swearing we will use nothing else. It's firm like mayo should be. It has a rich taste. It is "the" perfect mayo. As a result of finally finding the culprit for ruining her potato salad and slaw, I am so happy to say that we are back to the days of 5 lbs. of potato salad at a time, along with large bowls of cole slaw. And yes, one of my simple pleasures is back as well, the mayonnaise sandwich. There is nothing like fresh bread and a big spoonful of Duke's. So, back to that debt of gratitude, I have to thank Duke's for making the perfect mayo. I can't imagine going to the rest of my life without my wife's potato salad and cole slaw. Duke's has made me a happy man again. Thank you.

— Rick D., Saint Leonard, MD

I live in Universal City, TX, 11 miles northeast of San Antonio. I saw your commercial on TV the other night, and due to my disgust with both Miracle Whip and Hellmann's mayo, I looked for your product when I went to the grocery store (HEB). I was delighted to find it and even more with the way my egg salad tasted when I made it with Duke's. Needless to say, I am now a convert and a happy and true believer. Long live Duke's!!

— Sherry Revill, Universal City, TX

THANK YOU for not only making a great mayo, but for still offering it in 32 oz. jars. I'm so tired of other companies that cut the size AND raise the price. The response I received was reducing the size is better than raising the price. Consumers are NOT that stupid.

— Leigh Edinger

Dear Duke's,

Recently the mayonnaise I had used for a long time reduced the amount of mayo they put in their jar. I then noticed that Duke's had not done so. I tried Duke's and found not only a great southern taste and a great southern tradition, but also a great southern value. Keep up the good work.

— Cliff Potter

For 29 of my 30 years on planet Earth, I eschewed mayonnaise at all turns. If it came slathered on a burger, I scraped it off. If someone brought cole slaw to a cookout, I took off in a hard run. Just last year, however, I was unknowingly served a sandwich with Duke's mayonnaise. Since this time, my mayonnaise paradigm has been turned on its ear. Without overstating things, Duke's mayonnaise is the best condiment I have ever tasted. I have not seen any Duke's mayonnaise advertising in my area. However, never fear. I have taken it upon myself to become a personal ambassador for your mayonnaise. I first converted my wife (a former Miracle Whip fan) and then baptized a number of friends and co-workers in the silky ribbons of mayonnaisy goodness.

I just thought you should know that you have a fan in Tennessee. Keep up the good work making mayonnaise. I will keep doing my part down here.

— Colin McCaffrey, Hermitage, TN

This is the best stuff ever! I live in Southern California, and our big mayo is Best Foods -- Hellmann's on the east coast. Well, Duke's is the best. I got turned on to it from a dear friend of mine from Atlanta. She brought me back this huge container. At first I thought it was a joke. But, she knows how I love to cook, and told me I would never be without this after I try it. Well, I thought "How different can mayo be?" Well, let me tell you, nothing else will get past my front door other than Duke's. I have now ordered your sandwich spread and tartar sauce -- both winners. Thank God for the Internet and UPS, because I will be keeping a well stocked pantry of Duke's products. Thank you!

— Jack, West Hollywood, CA

I would like to thank you that Duke's mayo is still a full quart. For years I have paid exorbitant prices for Hellmann's mayo exclusively. That was until I realized I was being cheated. Hellmann's and Kraft mayo jars do not contain 32 ounces. What's worse, the consumer was never let in on the fact they were not getting a full quart, but were paying a higher price for LESS product. THANK YOU! I will always purchase Duke's mayo now and in the future. By the way, I use light mayo and I've found that Duke's light tastes better than Hellmann's or Kraft.

— Cathy Barr, Jacksonville, FL

Wow, for me and many in my family, being devout Hellmann's fans and enjoying bringing out the best for most of my 50 years, this is quite a story to share with you. In early July I challenged Duke's to send a jar of mayonnaise to me and let my family taste it. We had been watching the commercials for a few months but I couldn't find it. Not only did Duke's accept my challenge and send a jar but they also located a local grocery store in my community that does carry Duke's. We decided to have a taste test during our next family barbeque. On Saturday I made two bowls of potato salad, one with Hellmann's and one with Duke's. Labeled "Mayo A" and "Mayo B" I was the only one who knew which was which and I wrote it down as well as used two different bowls to be sure I didn't flub the test, HA! The same ingredients as well as the same amount of ingredients were used in each one, only the mayonnaise was different. I was as precise as possible and pretty tickled with myself for being so. I tasted each one several times before letting them chill for the next day's taste test. Right away I knew this was going to be a close. 13 people turned out for the barbeque and potato salad taste test. I thought to myself later, we had a "Baker's Dozen" and that just added to the uniqueness of our challenge, Duke's vs. Hellmann's. I had marked the plates to be sure nobody confused the potato salad they were eating and the votes would be as accurate as possible. We took it very seriously but had an absolute ball enjoying the potato salads and deciding which one we were going to choose. We even filmed the event because based on the outcome I felt this could make a great commercial that could go either way, LoL! Getting a Hellmann's fan to switch is no easy task, not in Missouri. At the end of meal the voting began. Inside I am excited and laughing but I can't react to some of the statements made when people were voting. One person said they felt like a traitor, ha!, while others were sure which one was Hellman's and certain of their vote. I knew they were choosing Duke's. By the time all the votes were cast I was quite impressed with the time and effort each voter put into their final decision. Well, here we go. drum roll please, HA! When I announced the winner was "Duke's" by a vote of 12 to 1 the looks on their faces said so much. Many of them were 100 percent certain that they were casting their vote for Hellman's, stating that Duke's was good and it was really close but they were sticking with "Mayo B." From this point on it became hysterical. After a very in depth discussion, some of them actually cleaned their palette, tasted each one again, and still voted for Duke's, having to admit Duke's was in fact better than Hellmann's and that was after they now knew which was which. Even the "1" person that voted for Hellman's had to admit they would use Duke's in the future. I know you are very confident that Duke's is the best but having convinced a group of seriously, "die-hard" Hellmann's Fans, in our world, it's nothing short of "monumental!" We applaud you, we truly do! Never, and I mean NEVER, did I ever think ANYTHING out there could exceed the quality of Hellman's. How terribly disappointing it was for Hellmann's that day. I sincerely thank Duke's for accepting my challenge and sending not only the jar of mayonnaise but also coupons and the store information for my next purchase. The challenge was, to say the least, very invigorating, Ha! Though taken seriously we had a lot of fun doing it. Having made believers out of us, going forward there will always be Duke's mayonnaise in the fridge and one waiting in the cupboard. I shared this with many people I work with and now they are doing the same thing with their families. I expect to hear some results from their challenges very soon. Additionally, my sister, who always made her much loved potato salad with "Miracle Whip," has not only decided to start using mayonnaise but using Duke's. That's a huge win for Duke's in and of itself. Later in the week, after our barbeque, we tried Duke's on many other things, from sandwiches to dipping French fries (Belgian style) and it was delicious!!! Duke's is EVERYTHING you say it is. The smooth creamy texture is a prelude to the amazing flavor. I truly commend you on your big win with my family! I can tell you that I look forward to years of cooking with and enjoying Duke's mayonnaise and I won't hesitate to try some of your other products. I could not be more sincere. Thank you so much again and CONGRATULATIONS DUKE'S !!!

— Elizabeth Syberg-Schmitt

You guys ROCK!! Your mayo is absolutely both hands down the best I have ever tasted! This is not a young palate talking to you either. My only regret is that I didn't discover this product years ago. Please...don't change a thing!! No new & improved etc. leave it alone. Thank you & best to you.

— Larry Gould

I've grown up eating Duke's Mayonnaise. In fact, Duke's was the only mayonnaise allowed in our house. I've tried every kind over the years and nothing compares or even comes close to Duke's. I don't know of anyone who uses as much Duke's as my family. I buy 4 gallons at a time because we eat a lot of slaw, potato salad, and casseroles. Try it one time and you'll be convinced too.

— Stan Souther

Well, here's another convert for you! Growing up in the Midwest, we always used Miracle Whip. In fact, I couldn't stand mayo! I refused to use it in anything! However, here in the south, all I heard about is Duke's, Duke's, Duke's! So I decided to give it a try. I can't believe there's such a difference. I just assumed that all mayos were created equal. Not so! Now my family is so hooked, that since your amazing mayo isn't available in Kansas City, Missouri markets -- I've become the Duke's Connection. Mailing giant jars to my family! We are a mayo family now!! Duke's Mayo, that is!

— Dana DeWeese, Myrtle Beach, SC

Honestly, I can't remember Duke's not being a part of my life. If one wants to create a REAL potato salad or tomato sandwich (or both!), the key ingredient MUST be Duke's. Seriously, there can be no substitute! Thank you for an awesome product.

— Di McK

I recently moved back to my hometown of Greenville, SC from about 5 years in a small town in Nebraska. Yes, Nebraska! I remarried 7 years ago to a man from Nebraska that was living in SC and he asked that we relocate so he could retire in his hometown. I agreed, with the understanding that I could return to SC periodically to visit my grown children, grandchild and friends and to purchase DUKE'S mayonnaise. You see, you can't get it out there and I WILL NOT use any other mayo in my chicken salad and other salads and sandwiches. So, every time I visited SC, I took back at least 10 jars of DUKE's mayo. I even ordered the individual packets so I always had it when we ate out. The people out there like that sweet salad dressing on their sandwiches. Yuck!!!! Well we've moved back to SC and I have an unlimited supply of DUKE'S and nothing pleases me more!!! Thank you for making me so happy with the best mayo around!!!

— Donna Chandler

I live in SC and have been a "dyed-in-the-wool" Duke's Mayo user for over 70 years. From 1986-1992 my husband and I lived in Lafayette, LA. Duke's was not available there (tried to get Winn-Dixie to order it for us). Every time we came home to Greenville, SC, we would buy a case to take back to LA - also took some for a church member there who was from Whiteville, NC. Duke's is the BEST!!

— Yvonne Carter

My first recollection of Duke's mayonnaise was as a small child and my mother would fix turkey, lettuce and tomato on white bread... with mayo, of course . I hated lettuce. I hated tomatoes.... and I didn't think much of dry, thin sliced turkey either. What I did like (loved) was the bread and Duke's mayonnaise so I would pull the turkey, the tomato and the lettuce out of the sandwich, ball it up in my napkin and throw it under the table where I figured either nobody would ever find it or the dog would eat it! (Hey!... I was a little kid as I said!) I would then eat the mayonnaise sandwich and ask for seconds. That technique (which also worked with asparagus, broccoli and Brussell sprouts) was soon discovered although I totally lied and denied I had anything to do with it. As a result I would make my own "Duke's and bread" sandwiches as I hid in the basement which was soon discovered as well. I loved Duke's then and I love it still. Nothing else comes close. I have recognized the label since that tender age and have even introduced AND converted some of my Yankee friends to the world's best mayonnaise! Keep up the great work!!

— Whit Wall

Mrs. Eugenia Duke Almost a century after Eugenia Duke created her unique mayonnaise recipe, Duke’s is still made in Greenville, South Carolina. Mrs. Duke’s kitchen has been replaced by a modern production facility that turns out 240 jars of mayonnaise a minute, but the recipe for Duke’s Mayonnaise has remained the same. “We’ve never changed the formula,” explains Mark Sauer, vice president of sales for C. F. Sauer and great-grandson of Conrad Sauer, Sr., “not since Duke’s time.” Duke’s, he says, is a uniquely Southern product. “It was developed at a time when the South was still a distinctive place with a distinctive taste. And that hasn’t changed.” The formula for Duke’s includes more egg yolks than other brands of mayonnaise, he points out. It also has no added sugar. (It’s the only major brand of mayonnaise that can make that claim.) That combination gives the mayonnaise a tanginess Duke’s fans have come to love.

Traditionally, Duke’s market area has included northern Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. In recent years, the company has expanded into Alabama, Mississippi, Ohio, and Tennessee, as well. And now fans of Duke’s Mayonnaise have an alternative way to purchase their favorite spread. The mayonnaise is now available online at Duke’s Company Store. Soon, everyone will be crazy for this true Southern original.

— Excerpts courtesy of Betty Terry from “Taste of the South” Spring 2007