Fourth Ward Bread Co. Charlotte, NC


One of my favorite parts of being a food photographer is discovering restaurants in my own city that I have never visited before. A few months ago, I was working on a story that profiled the rise of artisan bakeries in the Charlotte area. While shooting this story, I made a visit to Fourth Ward Bread Co. This is a place that I had heard about many times, but had never made a trip to visit.


It’s located Uptown in an old restored warehouse. There is a sitting area in the front surrounded by gorgeous window that almost reach to the top of the 15ft tall ceilings. As you walk towards the back, you have a big decision to make.


What should you order?  At Fourth Ward, they bake a wide assortment of breads. From traditional loaves to pastries to pizza and sandwiches, they do it all! You can pick up bakery items to take home, or stay for a meal. They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner, so if you are hungry, there is never a bad time to visit.


For the story, I was there in the morning to experience their breakfast. In the bakery case, I noticed a trio of galettes. The round shapes with jeweled cherries, apples, or blueberries on top were the perfect subjects for the story! Here are a few shots of them.

fourth_ward_bread_co_8 fourth_ward_bread_co_4


I also gave one of their breakfast sandwiches a try. This wasn’t your traditional sandwich. Instead of the croissant cut in half and the contents serves between the bread, the center was hollowed out and filled with egg, sausage, and cheese. Another perk to the job is eating some of the items I shoot. That being said, this egg croissant didn’t last long after the last image was shot!


I look forward to my next trip to Fourth Ward Bread Co. If you are ever in the area, I encourage you to stop by and take a taste! If you are interested in how I photographed these images, here is an article I wrote on photographing FOOD about shooting the assignment.





Louie Mueller Barbecue – Taylor, TX

Back in September, I was in the great state of Texas for a 9 day trip to promote and sign The Southern Tailgating Cookbook. While in the Lonestar State, I had another agenda. I was going to eat a lot of Texas style barbecue. When in North Carolina, I enjoy pulled pork, but when I am in Texas, I am there for the brisket! After a weekend in Austin, I decided to make a stop by Louie Mueller Barbecue in nearby Taylor, Texas. There were three factors that drew me to Louie Mueller. 1. It was about 40 minutes outside of Austin, so not to far away. 2. It is in the town of Taylor, and I thought it would be fun to visit a town named after me. 3. It was in the top 5 of Texas Monthly’s barbecue rankings. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so here is a photographic look at my trip to Taylor, Texas.

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Gourdough’s Specialty Doughnuts Austin, TX

Austin is well known for their food trucks and food truck trailer parks. In 2010, I had a blast visiting Torchy’s, Man Bites Dog, and Hey Cupcake. When I was back in Austin for The Southern Tailgating Cookbook Tour a few weeks ago, I made a stop at a new truck that I had heard quite a bit about; Gourdough’s Specialty Doughnuts!

These aren’t your typical doughnuts. At Gourdough’s you are getting a doughnut that will eat like a meal! Each doughnut is topped with a wide assortment of toppings. From the Flying Pig (Bacon with Maple Syrup Icing) to the Dirty Berry (Fudge Chocolate Icing with Grilled Strawberries), Gourgough’s has something for every taste! I decided to go with the Funky Monkey (Grilled Bananas & Cream Cheese Icing with Brown Sugar). If you are a doughnut lover, you have to give Gourdough’s a try!

For those of you who live in the Athens, GA, area, I would love to see you at Avid Bookshop tonight (10/4/13) at 6:30pm for a signing of The Southern Tailgating Cookbook! Have a great weekend!

The Southern Tailgating Cookbook Texas Book Tour

2 weeks of college football are now in the books. Some of you have teams off to a strong 2-0 start, while others have teams that are still trying to find their stride.  Don’t worry!  It’s still early in the season and anything can happen. Are you a Texas Longhorn, TCU Horned Frog, Houston Cougar, Baylor Bear, SMU Mustang, Texas Tech Red Raider, or Texas A&M Aggie? I am coming to your state for part of The Southern Tailgating Cookbook Book Tour!

There will be two game day stops. I will be on The UT campus this weekend when Ole Miss comes to town and at Texas A&M on 9/21 when SMU comes to town. There will also be stops at Brazos Bookstore in Houston and The SMU Bookstore in Dallas.

Here are the full details for each event.



Texas vs Ole Miss Game

 Saturday, September 14, 2013

University Co-op Bookstore

2246 Guadalupe, Austin, TX 78705

I will be in and out throughout the day and will have a seated signing from 2:30-4:30. 


  Tuesday, September 17, 2013, 7:00pm

Brazos Bookstore

2421 Bissonnet St., Houston, TX 77005



Wednesday, September 18, 2013, 5:00pm

Southern Methodist University Bookstore

3060 Mockingbird Ln, Dallas, TX 75205


College Station

Texas A&M vs SMU

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Texas A&M University Bookstore

Memorial Student Center, College Station, TX 77843

 I hope to see you there! I will be tweeting about my time in Texas. Follow me on Twitter   or Instagram to see what I find along the way. If you haven’t picked up your copy of The Southern Tailgating Cookbook, it is available on Amazon, through UNC Press, or your local bookstore! If you live in a town where the book tour has made a stop, there are signed copies available there! (Charlotte try Park Road Books, Raleigh, try Quail Ridge Books).

The Southern Tailgating Cookbook Book Tour

The day I have been waiting almost 3 years for is only 2 weeks away! On August 5th, The Southern Tailgating Cookbook will be available! Some of you who preordered might have already received your copy. I hope you enjoy it! To celebrate the book, I will be on a book tour this fall! I would love to meet you and sign your copy! Here is the line up of where I will be.


The Southern Tailgating Cookbook 2013 Book Tour

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Thursday, August 15 7:30pm


Quail Ridge Books-Raleigh, NC
Saturday, August 24 2:00pm


Park Road Books-Charlotte, NC
Sunday, September 1 5:00 PM


Decatur Book Festival-Decatur, GA
Sunday, September 8 2:00pm


Barnes & Noble-Burlington, NC
Saturday, September 14                  

Ole Miss @ U Texas Game

University Coop Bookstore-Austin, TX
Tuesday, September 17 7:00pm


Brazos Bookstore Houston, TX
Wednesday, September 18 5:00pm


Southern Methodist University Bookstore-Dallas, TX
Saturday, September 21     


Texas A&M University Bookstore-College Station, TX
Thursday, September 26  6:00pm  

VA Tech @ GA Tech Game 

Georgia Tech Bookstore-Atlanta, GA
Friday, October 4, 6:30pm


Avid Bookshop-Athens, GA
Saturday, October 12


Southern Festival of Books-Nashville, TN
Saturday, October 19 2:00pm            

LSU @ Ole Miss Game

Ole Miss University Bookstore-Oxford, MS
Saturday, October 26                            

Furman @ LSU Game

LSU University Bookstore-Baton Rouge, LA
Saturday, November 9                          

LSU @ Alabama Game

The University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa, AL
Saturday, November 30                        

Clemson @ USC Game

University of South Carolina Bookstore-Columbia, SC
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Throughout the fall, I will be making 15 stops in 8 different states!  From bookstore, to festivals, to tailgating on college campuses, this tour has it all! Some events don’t have start times yet. I will be filling those in as they are finalized.

I am looking forward another fall filled with tailgating and can’t wait to meet you and come see your tailgate! I will be making game day stops at South Carolina, Alabama, LSU, Ole Miss, Georgia Tech, Texas A&M, and Texas! If you will be tailgating there, I would love to come by and see how you celebrate GAME-DAY!

I will be updating you throughout the fall of the tour’s progress. If you haven’t ordered your copy of The Southern Tailgating Cookbook yet, you can buy one as a hard back or Ebook edition!

I look forward to seeing you this fall! Happy Tailgating!










Scott’s Barbecue, Goldsboro North Carolina

I grew up and currently live in North Carolina. This means that when it comes barbeque, I automatically picture a pulled pork platter or sandwich topped with slaw. Every North Carolinian is accustomed to pork as the foundation of their BBQ platter or sandwich, but there are disagreements as to what sauce will go on top. In the Western part of the state , you will find sweet, more tomato-based sauces. In the Eastern part, it is a tangy thin vinegar-based sauce.  Sara is from the eastern part of North Carolina, Goldsboro to be exact. Whenever we go back to Goldsboro to visit her family, barbeque is always involved. On a recent trip, Sara and her parents took me to an NC barbeque establishment that has been around for 96 years! Here is what I found on my trip to Scott’s Barbeque.

I have come to find that you can’t judge a restaurant by its exterior. A plain unassuming brick building will many times have a delicious meal inside that might be easy to miss. With Scott’s that is just the case. Inside this plain looking exterior is a barbeque place that you must make a stop at. You will have to time your stop correctly, though. Scott’s is only open on Thursday and Fridays from 10:30-2:30pm.

Inside, you can order your barbeque several different ways. I decided to go with the chopped platter with coleslaw and potato salad as the sides. In addition to that, I went with a side of brunswick stew. Like any great barbeque place, hushpuppies were a part of the meal!


This was a case of my eyes being bigger than my stomach and I gladly packed up half the box to eat later on. Brunswick Stew and barbeque! It is hard to have a better lunch than that. Like all barbeque found in the eastern part of NC, the thin sauce has a delightful tang to it. Every place will vary in what they put into their secret sauces, but the common denominator is it will be vinegar-based and taste amazing on pulled, chunked, or chopped pork!

If you can’t make it to Goldsboro to try Scott’s for yourself, then this secret recipe sauce can be shipped directly to your door! Click here to find out more.  If you find yourself in Goldsboro and are looking for lunch on Thursday or Friday I suggest giving Scott’s a try.

Thanks to Sara and her lovely parents for introducing me to Scott’s!






The Southern Tailgating Cookbook


Allow me to introduce you to something that has been three years in the making: The Southern Tailgating Cookbook! The book won’t hit store shelves until August, but you can now pre-order your copy from UNC Press!

If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen some of the behind the scenes recipe development, writing, and shooting that has gone into this project.


When I started my first tailgate tour back in 2010, I could never have imagined that three years later it would turn into this book! I have learned a lot in the book writing process and couldn’t be happier with what this project has turned into! If you have enjoyed the food on Taylor Takes A Taste, you are going to fall in love with the delicious tailgating inspired recipes that I worked with Sally to developed for The Southern Tailgating Cookbook!  Inside the 240 pages of this book you will find 110 recipes that are designed to wow your tailgating guests, 75 images of food and tailgating (shot by yours truly), and 15 side bars that give an in-depth look into aspects of southern tailgating culture. All together this is A Game-Day Guide for Lovers of Food, Football, and the South. Pre-order your copy today!


Chow Down Uptown Charlotte Part 1

When most people think of food trucks, the first places they think of are probably Austin, Los Angeles, or New York City, but that might be changing soon! Charlotte’s food truck scene has steadily been on the rise for the past few years. As the weather heats up, so do the food trucks, with their weeknight rallies throughout the spring and summer. The first in a series of Chow Down Uptowns this season was Thursday and there was no way I was going to miss it! Let me walk you through what happens when I show up at a food truck event.

My first stop was the Wingzza Truck (wings and pizza, how could you go wrong?). After talking with the owner, Larry, I decided to go with five Carolina Buffalo wings. Carolina Buffalo is a cross between your mild buffalo sauce (because I’m kind of a wuss), and the golden mustard-based barbecue sauce found in South Carolina. As you can see, these wings didn’t last long!

The next stop was The Homegrown Crepe Inc. When dealing with crepes, I always run into a huge dilemma: savory or sweet?!?! After reading the Ninja Monkey’s description (Nutella, Banana, Espresso Liquer, Toasted Coconut, and Powdered Sugar, I knew it was going to be a sweet night. Also, Ninja Monkey is an awesome name for anything, especially a crepe. Below is what happened when I crossed paths with the Ninja Monkey.

After my dessert crepe, I realized that it was time for dessert. On a previous trip to Charleston with Sara, I had tried King of Pops. They may have been the smallest cart at the rally, but don’t let their size fool you. They are full of flavor! After agonizing over what pop to select, and consulting my friends, Ben and JJ, who have tried 20 or so of them in the last two weeks, I decided to go with the pomegranate lemonade. This sweet and tart pop was the perfect end to the evening (I might have accidentally also taken home two cupcakes. Oops!).

For those of you who live in Charlotte, I hope to see you at the next rally, May 16 at 5PM in the parking lot across from the 7th Street Station Parking deck uptown.


Food Blog South 2013 Are you Going?

What are you doing January 26th ,2013? How about making a trip to Birmingham, AL for Food Blog South!

Do you have goals that you would like to achieve with your blog in 2013? Have you thought about starting a blog ? Are there bloggers that you want to finally meet in person? All these things can be done at FBS 2013. I have been to the last two FBS conferences and had a blast at each! Here is my recap from 2011 and 2012.

This year, I will be speaking with Lisa Ekus on the topic of Writing a Cookbook. If you have been following me on instagram and twitter over the last year you have probably seen many pictures of recipe testing and shooting. This has all been a part of the tailgating cook book that I have written with UNC Press. I am incredibly excited about how it has turned out and will give you many more details in the coming months. At Food Blog South I will  be speaking about the book and the journey it has been from a concept to a reality. I hope you can make it ! A full agenda of the amazing speakers can be seen here,

If you haven’t bought your ticket yet or are still on the fence about attending this year’s conference I say go for it! Here is a discount code that you can use to receive 10% off your ticket. At checkout just type in TaylorM to receive 10% off you conference registration !Looking forward to seeing you in Birmingham.

– Taylor

Here is a link to Food Bog South’s Main web page

Whiskey, Beer, Pubs, and Ireland

A trip to Ireland wouldn’t be complete without an investigation into what may be their most popular export. Booze. From St Patrick’s Day celebrations, to the term “I’ll take my coffee Irish”. The Emerald Isle is known for its alcohol production and consumption. During my trip, I was able to visit a distillery, brewery, and more than a few pubs.

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Scenes from Ireland

If you follow me on Instagram (taylormathis) or on twitter (@taylor_mathis) you may have noticed that I have spent the last week and a half in Ireland. I was there on vacation while touring the country with Sara and her parents. Over the next few weeks, I will share with you in more detail about what I did and saw during my time on “The Emerald Isle”. This includes a trip to the Waterford and Guinness factories, walking with a hawk, and an exploration into the Irish Pub scene. They say A picture is worth a thousand words, so here are a few thousand expressing the scenery of the country . Enjoy.

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