One day as Chef Scott and his wife were visiting a friend’s vineyard in Napa, California, they stopped for gas. At the station they noticed a table stacked with heirloom tomatoes. He wondered at how great it was that the chefs around there had such easy access to fresh produce. His wife then reminded him that they lived in Florida, a great resource for local farms. It was then that Chef Scott set out to find and work closely with local farmers for his restaurant 29 South Eats in downtown Fernandina. He works closely with his farm partners but still allows them to do what they do best.

“We tell the farmer what we want and the farmer grows it how they want it.”

The quality and integrity of what they are putting out is very important to Chef Scott as well. He explains, “I like to know what’s going into the chicken and what my pigs are being fed. Our eggs are a week old at the oldest. Even if the guest might not know the difference, we’ll know.” That same intensity is put into each dish. Chef Scott’s philosophy is “If you start with a great ingredient, and you baby it and let it shine on the plate, the worst you’re going to end up with is something good.” A pioneer of elevated food scenes, he is determined to see the first coast become a spot well known for great food and doesn’t mind sharing the spotlight. “The more excellent restaurants that open here, the better.”

Don’t Miss: The waffle served with fresh berries and creamery sourced rum raisin ice cream from their brunch menu will disappear before you’ve had your first sip of coffee. Your taste buds will thank you.