Scotty Scott’s palate was formed in childhood. He grew up in a family of home cooks, and whenever there was a holiday or celebration, he could either be found by his mother’s side, soaking up all her techniques, or by his father’s, smelling smoke from his eyes. slammed next to the grill .
“Not only did my mom encourage me to try different things, but she always wanted me to have a well-rounded meal,” explains the self-taught Texas cook. That means when friends scoffed at the veggies on his plate, Scott dove in. “It’s because of them that I’m always looking for different flavors, different textures, and different items on my plate, which really help make a dining experience more enjoyable.”
Scott grew up in Detroit and then moved to Houston at age 17 to attend college and study law. While food was always the focus of gatherings growing up, it was Scott’s exposure to the Gulf Coast—and the seafood that came with it—that really sparked his interest in cooking.
“The Gulf Coast region has really taken hold of me and that cuisine is where I really started honing my chops as a home cook,” Scott says. “With my friends and their relatives, I learned how to make gumbo and po’boys and that whole thing.”
Scott started hosting dinner parties. It was a creative outlet for him as he struggled with his new career in the legal world. Friends and family were encouraging and constantly asked Scott when he would write a cookbook. In his eyes, cooking was just a hobby, but for his friends and family, they saw and tasted a gift.
“The more people encourage you, the more you think you could really do it,” Scott grins. “And then I realized that if you really enjoy something, if it’s something you’re really passionate about, you should pursue it.”
So Scott started a food blog, aptly titled Cook Drunk Food, where family and friends could search the recipes he developed. He also started making YouTube videos that coincided with the dishes he was preparing and presented pop-ups so he could feed more people in person. He became a private chef and even cooked for Grammy award-winning singer Leon Bridges. Finally, the cookbook publishers knocked on the door. What Scott once thought of as a hobby became a career.