Fried chicken lovers unite… and then head straight to Kentucky! That’s right, The Bluegrass State could easily be dubbed “The Fried Chicken state” thanks to all of the phenomenal establishments serving up delectable fried chicken, each with its own twist. Here’s a suggested tour of Kentucky for those who just can’t get enough crispy, meaty goodness.
Old Talbott Tavern – Bardstown, KY
Serving up satisfying fare to weary travelers since 1779, the Old Talbott is frequently referred to as the oldest stagecoach stop in America. This historic spot is known for its fried chicken (of course!), country ham, and Chicken Phillipe. Make sure you save room for dessert – the house specialties include chess pie and merengue pie (both pair well with bourbon, of which there is plenty). You can even stay the night in Talbott’s cozy bed and breakfast, but beware of ghosts – both Jesse James and The Lady in White have been said to haunt the hallways.
Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill Inn – Harrodsburg, KY
Not only is Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill America’s largest restored Shaker village, it’s also known as one of the best places to get fried chicken in Kentucky. Work up an appetite by visiting the interiors of over a dozen of the village’s 34 original restored buildings on 3,000 acres or hiking on the 40 miles of trails in the Nature Preserve. Then head over to the Inn to enjoy Mrs. Kremer’s Fried Chicken (half a salt-brined spring chicken tossed in seasoned flour and fried) served with hot bread and vegetable sides.
Blue Heron Steak House – Lexington, KY
A foodie-friendly spot, the Blue Heron Steak House is a restaurant and cocktail bar that serves updated versions of southern classics, including fried chicken, of course. Made from locally raised, free range chickens and tantalizing, perfectly seasoned batter, their fried chicken will leave you speechless. Add a Caesar salad with fried white anchovies and a bourbon-based craft cocktail or glass of wine and you’ve got yourself a meal to remember.
Harland Sanders Café and Museum – Corbin, KY
Of course, no fried chicken tour of Kentucky would be complete without a stop at the Harland Sanders Café and Museum. The home of the world-famous Kentucky Fried Chicken, this Corbin institution is the place to learn about Colonel Harland Sanders and the birth of his KFC empire. After you tour the museum and check out all of the KFC memorabilia, tuck in and enjoy some of Sanders’ famous fried chicken, which is still made using the secret recipe he developed in 1940.
Joe’s Drive-In Chicken – Isom, KY
Our advice when looking for places to eat in a new place is to follow the locals. In Isom, the locals will lead you straight to Joe’s Drive-In Chicken. This roadside spot is the place to get fried chicken, burgers, fries, and monster ice cream scoops. Take your grub down to the riverside picnic area and enjoy the views.
Are you a fried chicken aficionado? What other spots in Kentucky would you suggest? Let us know in the comments section.