S1E9 | Savory Moments Catering Co.’s Jodi Wright & Heather Scovel

SEASON 1: EPISODE NUMBER: 9

EPISODE GUEST: Savory Moments Catering Co

Sisters Jodi Wright & Heather Scovel took a gamble on an idea in the middle of the 2009 recession and the rewards have been sweet.

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Sisters Jodi Wright & Heather Scovel took a gamble on an idea in the middle of the 2009 recession and the rewards have been sweet.

Jodi Wright was working in design for the transportation industry in Alabama, itching to move back north when her sister, Heather Scovel, a trained pastry chef working in corporate American had a crazy idea. Move to Charlotte, NC, and create a catering business.

So she did. The sisters got together, created a business plan, and leased a space for 3 years. Savory Moments Catering Company was launched.

“The first year was miserable,” says Wright. “It was just the two of us so if something had to be done, it was one of us,” remembers Scovel. But the duo was determined to make it work. They went after any job that could earn them revenue for their catering business.

Try, fail, adjust, learn to pivot. “We tried anything to keep our business alive,” says Wright.

They landed a gig serving the National Guard in Albemarle, N.C. traveling back and forth from their Huntersville, NC location to serve meals. They made ends meet and pushed on and the second year brought them more business. But it was also time to look for a permanent location.

“Luck has to do with a lot of things,” says Wright. After 1.5 of searching for the perfect spot for an event space plus catering kitchen, they found it. They put in their offer, excited for a new chapter. But their offer was not accepted.

Back to the drawing board, the sisters found a new location with only a catering kitchen. With 24 hours until their deal on this new location was finalized, the first location deal fell through and Savory Moments could reclaim their ideal home.

“Every time something great happens to us we always end up in the dish room or doing something mundane that gets you back into check,” laughs Scovel. “It’s not glamorous.”

The team began to tackle the new location and their new concept, Magnolia Woods events. The new location is now transformed into a successful event space while their catering operation runs out of the kitchen. Two businesses under one roof, all spawned from a mid-recession gamble of an idea.

“I don’t know if we WOULD be,” remarks Wright on the luck of getting the original venue. The second venue would not have allowed them to expand into the events arena.

Each time they hit a 3 year mark, they hit a new groove. But it’s not without sacrifice. “Keeping costs in line is huge,” says Scovel. “You will not be paid the first 3 years.” The sisters advise getting a good CPA to help, even if money is tight at the time.

“It’s so easy to get into a rhythm of good times you forget there are some rough times,” says Wright.

And while working with family can be easy, it also comes with challenges. The sisters also stress the importance of learning to play off each other’s strengths.  Says Wright, “You have to learn to get along not only with staff but with business partners, you have to use those skills all the time.”

“You have to learn to get along not only with staff but with business partners, you have to use those skills all the time.”

– Jodi Wright, Savory Moments Catering Co

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