Chef Scott Varnedoe
Born in Pensacola, Florida and raised in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Chef Scott Varnedoe’s early exposure to food and cooking came through his parents, both accomplished cooks, and influential on Scott and his brother, Todd, an executive chef in Cornwall, England. It was in Baton Rouge, at White Oak Plantation, that Chef Varnedoe learned the basics of managing a kitchen under one of his role models, Chef John Folse. During his time at White Oak Plantation, Scott traveled all over the country to cook for celebrities and other prestigious politicians. It was also his education from Chef Folse that allowed him to pursue more challenging culinary goals throughout various restaurants in Baton Rouge, including Sherwood Forest Country Club, Goodwood Park Grill, and The Radisson Hotel and Conference Center.
A flourishing culinary career in Baton Rouge was accompanied by Scott’s entry into the competitive world of cooking. From the very first competition Scott entered, he wowed judges with new and exotic flavor combinations and plate presentations. His talent was so spectacular that Scott brought home gold, silver, and bronze medals in every competition he entered. Chef Varnedoe was honored at such prestigious competitions as the Baton Rouge Culinary Classic, the Ark-La-Tex Classic, White Oak Plantation’s Herb Festival, and the Shreveport Culinary Classic. More recently Scott has won the top honor of Best of Show two years in a row at the Acadiana Culinary Classic in Lafayette.
Although thriving in Baton Rouge, Chef Varnedoe yearned to strengthen his talent and again put his ability to the test by moving to New Orleans to compete against some of the best chefs in the country. He again proved himself worthy. Success followed him with each of his executive chef positions at Alex Patout’s Louisiana Restaurant, The City Energy Club, and Café Marigny (now The Marigny Brasserie). It was at Café Marigny that Scott established himself as one of the most prolific and visionary chefs in New Orleans. During his employment there Scott was featured as one of the top five chefs in New Orleans in Bon Appetit magazine and continued his winning streak by twice being named Best of Show at the Louisiana Gold New Orleans Culinary Classic.
In the years that followed, Scott opened his own namesake restaurant, Restaurant Varnedoe, in Fairhope, Alabama and became the executive chef at a private golf resort, Steelwood Country Club. The people, food, and atmosphere of Louisiana soon beckoned again, so Scott headed back to New Orleans where he partnered with longtime friend and owner of The Marigny Brasserie until forced to evacuate from Hurricane Katrina.
Scott and his family sought refuge in New Roads, Louisiana, just a 15 minute ferry ride away from St. Francisville. For three years, he ran Varnedoe’s Carriage House at The Myrtles Plantation which was named as a top restaurant in the Baton Rouge area by the Wall Street Journal.
Scott is now the executive chef at Stroube’s in downtown Baton Rouge and the consulting chef for Hotel Indigo. Scott has been honored twice in the past two years with an invitation to cook at the historic James Beard House in New York City. Scott is quickly becoming known for his innovative use of molecular gastronomy.