If you ask Ryan and Melissa Scarberry why they have such a good relationship, they will say it’s because they do everything together while, at the same time, nurturing each other’s individuality.
But, apparently, knowing how to make a killer grilled cheese doesn’t hurt either.
When asked what she loves about Ryan, Melissa said, “He makes the best grilled cheese in the world.”
Now, that wasn’t her only response, but it was the first thing that came to mind, so it begs the question:
Just what makes a Ryan Scarberry grilled cheese so great?
“I cook it in an iron skillet. That’s what makes it so great. A lot of people butter the bread. I butter the pan,” he said.
As for ingredients, plain, white bread and Kraft singles will do just fine – maybe pepper jack or white American, if you want to get fancy. The thing is, Ryan said, you can’t cheap out on the butter.
“It’s always Blue Bonnet butter. Everything tastes better with Blue Bonnet on it,” he said.
And you have to pay attention to the temperature of the pan.
“A lot of people, they’ll get the pan really hot. You want to put the pan at a lower temperature so you get the bread nice and crunchy and the cheese melted. You don’t want to just burn the bread and not melt the cheese,” he said.
Melissa, 32, is an X-ray technician at Charleston Area Medical Center. Ryan, also 32, is a chemical plant operator.
When she isn’t working, Melissa is the assistant tennis coach at Ripley High School. Ryan enjoys hunting in his spare time.
As a couple, the Scarberrys enjoy taking outdoor excursions in the Mountain State. Some of their favorite spots include Audra State Park, Hawk’s Nest, and Charles Fork Lake in Spencer.
The couple also enjoys traveling outside of West Virginia.
“We’ve been from Canada to Mexico,” Ryan said. “We just got back from Disney last week.”
“We’re going out west in October. We’ve been to Vegas,” Melissa said.
When they aren’t out having adventures, the Scarberry’s like to enjoy time at home watching the Bachelor with their dogs, Bay and Daphne, and cats Jax and Allen.
Ryan and Melissa met on a blind date. They were set up by Melissa’s best friend, Ashleigh Fields, and Ryan’s cousin, Marshall Fields.
“His cousin was dating my best friend – they later got married. They hooked us up,” Melissa said. “We went ice skating and then we went to TGI Fridays.”
The two had met before, Ryan said, but Melissa was dating someone else at the time.
“I told them (Ashleigh and Marshall) if she ever became single to let me know, and they did,” Ryan said.
“Ashleigh kept trying to get me to go out with him and I kept saying no. Then I finally agreed,” Melissa said.
The couple got married in Nov. 11, 2011.
Beyond a mutual love and respect for the art of grilling cheese sandwiches, the couple attribute their compatibility to communication.
“Besides the grilled cheeses, we talk about everything,” Melissa said.
“We don’t make any major decisions without talking each other. We always talk to each other about stuff. We always respect each other,” Ryan said.
While it’s true they do almost everything together, Ryan and Melissa both allow each other to flourish individually.
“You don’t want to lose yourself,” Melissa said. “We each do our own thing, but we do everything together, too, if that makes sense.”
They also share a strong faith, Ryan said. When their jobs allow it, they attend the same church as the friends who set them up.
It’s not hard to see why the Scarberry’s were chosen as the winners of the Jackson County Cutest Couple Contest sponsored by Jackson Newspapers. They won an overnight stay in a suite at McCoy’s Inn, one dozen roses for her, a gift basket for him from Bee Haven Floral and Gifts, a $25 gift certificate for Las Fajitas Mexican Grill in Ravenswood, and two free meals from Shoney’s.