Scott Rodney - Scott, Rodney

Rodney Scott

Biography

James Beard Award-winning pitmaster Rodney Scott cooked his first whole hog when he was just 11 years old. Since that day he has dedicated his life to the art of South Carolina barbecue and now shares his passion for the pit with people all over the world.

Scott began cooking at his family’s business in Hemingway, South Carolina, a convenience and grocery store on the side of the old highway called Scott’s Variety, where patrons could stop on for local produce, cold drinks and, on Thursdays only, smoked whole hogs. The Scotts built their own... READ MORE

James Beard Award-winning pitmaster Rodney Scott cooked his first whole hog when he was just 11 years old. Since that day he has dedicated his life to the art of South Carolina barbecue and now shares his passion for the pit with people all over the world.

Scott began cooking at his family’s business in Hemingway, South Carolina, a convenience and grocery store on the side of the old highway called Scott’s Variety, where patrons could stop on for local produce, cold drinks and, on Thursdays only, smoked whole hogs. The Scotts built their own pits behind the store and fired them up with hardwood coals. News of delicious pork barbecue began to spread amongst locals about the Scotts’ weekly barbecue feast, and the store quickly became well known in the region for that Scott family flavor. By the mid-80s, Scott’s Variety began smoking hogs two days a week, and that eventually turned to three. Folks drove for hours to meet Rodney Scott and try his barbecue that came from time-honored regional cooking traditions in Hemingway. In 2012, they added a fourth day, offering their old-fashioned whole-hog Carolina barbecue every Wednesday through Saturday to eager patrons.

Word of the mouth-watering food in Hemingway quickly reached the rest of the world as Scott traveled (as far as Australia and Belize), sharing his passion for whole hog barbecue and gaining superfans like chefs Sean Brock and Anthony Bourdain who also shared the gospel of his whole hog cooking. As Scott’s notoriety grew, so did the requests for him to open a joint closer to town.

In February 2017, Scott opened Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ in Charleston to folks lining up around the block and praise from media across the country. Smoked over glowing coals of oak with a touch of hickory and pecan hardwood, the fresh whole hogs are first cooked belly-down for 12 hours before their flipped, seasoned, doused with Rodney’s Sauce and cooked a little while longer to let the flavors soak in. The pulled pork is then served with sides like cornbread, fresh-cut shoestring fries, mac n’ cheese with a crispy breadcrumb topping and more. Spare ribs, chicken perlo, Southern-fried catfish and pit-cooked barbecue chicken provide a little variety to an otherwise pork-packed menu, along with a homemade banana pudding inspired by Scott’s mother.

A year after opening his flagship in Charleston, Scott was the first pitmaster to be named the 2018 Best Chef: Southeast by the James Beard Foundation in an historical and humbling win. He participates in festivals and events all over including Big Apple BBQ, Austin Food & Wine, Music to Your Mouth, Hogs for a Cause, Charleston Wine + Food Festival and more. With no plans to stop spreading the gospel of whole hog barbecue any time soon, Scott will open a Birmingham, Alabama, outpost in late 2018.

READ LESS