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Oral Histories

The SFA oral history program documents life stories from the American South. Collecting these stories, we honor the people whose labor defines the region. If you would like to contribute to SFA’s oral history collections, please send your ideas for oral history along with your CV or Resume and a portfolio of prior oral history work to

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Melissa Martin

Mosquito Supper Club

Chauvin, Louisiana native Melissa Martin did not begin her career in the food industry, but you could say that she’s been doing what she does for a living from birth. Growing up in a family generations-deep in the legacy of fishing on Louisiana’s coast, Martin’s culinary interpretation encompasses more than just food, but what she considers and endangered way of life and the social ethic that underpins it all.

Martin’s earlier ventures included Satsuma Café and and the Curious Oyster Company, but Martin’s larger vision culminated in 2014 with the Mosquito Supper Club. Here she serves fresh, elegantly straightforward Cajun dishes in, under normal circumstances, in a family-style dining room. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced Martin to adjust her unique restaurant model to accommodate distancing regulations, presenting a special challenge to present the communal, intimate experience that Supper Club regulars have come to love.

Date of interview:

Justin Nystrom

Justin Nystrom

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The Southern Foodways Alliance drives a more progressive future by leading conversations that challenge existing constructs, shape perspectives, and foster meaningful discussions. We reconsider the past with research, scrutiny, and documentation.


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