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Mayter Scott Masters the Definition of "Foodographer"

How a Love of Farming and Food, Inspired a Lifestyle Brand

The relationship between food and the soul is a powerful one. Julia Child famously described a revelatory meal of oysters and fine wine as, “an opening up of the soul and spirit.” 

For Mayter Scott, this connection was instilled early on. Her family planted the seed (literally and figuratively) of this love through farming, canning, and cooking country dinners. “The first meal I learned how to make was a ‘country dinner’ for my daddy consisting of cornbread (no sugar), fried squash, fried okra, black-eyed peas, slices of garden tomatoes, and fresh onion slices with a cold cucumber salad.” She goes on to describe the different roles and talents that members of her family had in the preparation of food. “My granny made the best chocolate gravy that she served over fresh cathead biscuits on days I caught the bus at her house.”

Given these formative childhood experiences, it was a natural progression for Scott to build a career in the food industry. “I currently provide marketing, public relations, social media management, and photography for my favorite restaurants. I only work with the best.” 

It would be a mistake to characterize her as a mere ‘foodie.’ The way in which she describes food, from her rich childhood memories of her grandma’s biscuits to her recommendations for good food in town, is downright poetic and echoed in her artistic talent for capturing food with her trusty Nikon. “I love documentary-style photography. I love tight shots of messy food. I edit with high contrast and saturation. I want you to look at my photos and say, "I WANT THAT." I photograph food how I want to eat it.” 

After having built a successful, full-time career in food, lifestyle, and restaurant photography (a career whose highlights include being published in the Wall Street Journal Magazine), Scott has her eyes on a new venture. Along with her husband, Winston Scott, who is a talented woodworker, she purchased a farm for which the couple has big plans. “We prayed for this land and God gave us the desires of our hearts through his faithfulness; we are going to use it to bless others.” 

Scott intends on merging her and her husband’s respective skills to build a lifestyle brand called The Shack and The Skillet. She describes it as combining, “food, photography, pottery and Winston’s woodworking to make small home goods and heirloom style furniture.” Based on her undeniable talent and infectious enthusiasm, we can’t wait to see this dream realized.

In addition to her aforementioned gifts, you might assume Scott also has very discerning and impeccable taste when it comes to food — and you’d be right. Therefore, we would be remiss if we didn’t use the opportunity to interview her to get some of her recommendations for the best food in town.

Let’s start with the necessities: coffee, beer, and barbecue. For “exceptional coffee and culture,” Scott recommends CREMA on Hermitage Ave. For delicious IPAs, she recommends Tennessee Brew Works. For barbecue, “you better be going to Shotgun Willies for the ribs, brisket, smoked sausage, sides, and the banana pudding!”

She also recommends Chef’s Market, MacHenry’s Meat & Three, Black Rabbit & the Farm House, Butcher & Bee + Red Headed Stranger, and Lockeland Table.

Pick any one of these fine establishments and who knows? You might just have a culinary revelation of your own. 

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