Brass Lantern Restaurant: West Kentucky's First 3-Star Restaurant
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I was just amazed when my parents took our family to eat at the Brass Latern Restuarant in Aurora, Kentucky...why? Well, it's really the only fine restaurant near to where they lived on Kentucky Lake. It has five unique dining rooms that serve a total of 208 people.
Garden Room (80 people)
Fireplace Room ( 65 people)
Front Room (30 people)
Balcony Room (20 people)
Pioneer Room (18 people)
They serve dinner only and are closed on Mondays.
They open at 5:00 p.m.
In the winter, they are open only Thursday through Sunday.
It's a family-owned restaurant with new owners in 2002 (Kelly and Bertha Wilson)
They purchased from a family who had run the Brass Latern for over 30 years.
The food is really elegant, but you can come in casual dress.
Favorite Dish: The Prime Rib is wonderful and roasted slowly all day long. They charbroil their tender Lobster Tail as well as their pair of Pork Chops. They also offer Pork Ribs that are roasted and then charbroiled.
I love their special Filet Mignon that is USDA Choice Midwestern, grain-fed tenderloins that are cut by hand. You can order the 6 oz Queen or 10 oz King.
The best of all worlds is the Queen and Lobster which is a Filet and Lobster Tail.
The desserts are to die for, especially their famous Turtle Pie which is graham cracker crust with chocolate/vanilla ice cream, fudge, caramel, and pecans! Literally decadent!
The Grasshopper Pie and Derby Pie are also yummy. They have delicious Fruit Smoothies also that are made with frozen yogurt and fruit juice..
Entrees range between $7.95 to 26.95.
I'm telling you that this restaurant is like eating in a fine restaurant in New York or Chicago....just perfecto!Related to:
- Food and Dining
My friend Jose owns this restaurant that has only been open for a couple of months. He used to have another restaurant called Pranza Dimorare that served both Mexican and Italian, but they moved to another (better) location and now serve only Italian. The new place is better because since it is located on the Bypass it gets more traffic and is busier. It is also not on the dry part of town so he is able to serve wine and beer. I really like the sparkling wine but he makes fun of me and makes me order red. I'm sure he'll let YOU order whatever you want to, though. :-0 It is a family run restaurant and you'll meet his brother, his sister-in-law, his neice, and maybe even his daughter. It's a good place to go.
Favorite Dish: Jose makes his own pasta so right away it's a little different from your average Olive Garden. He mostly only has spaghetti, unless you order the lasagna or ravioli. I recommend the lasagna myself. The homemade marinara sauce is wonderful with just the slightest hint of sugar. (The Italians yell at him for the sugar bit, but it takes too long to make it without it.) For $3.95 you can get lasagna, a salad, and a piece of homemade bread. If you want to order off of the lunch menu for dinner (the portions are smaller) they will add $1 extra to the tab.
His dessert menu has expanded considerably and includes chocolate and cheese chimichangas, as well as Banana Alaska and other light fares.
Lexington needed a place like this. This is the place that you eat at when you want to forget that you're in Kentucky. VERY European. (Although they say it's more like Manhattan.) Could have something to do with the fact that the owner is Russian. Check out the gift shop with lots of international stuff. It changes very often and there’s always a lot of little trinkets to be found. It's also across from the Kentucky Theatre so it's nice to have dinner and then go to a show. In the summer they have seating on the sidewalk.
Favorite Dish: Baked Brie & Fruit Chutney- pretty good if you want something lite
Little Italy SB--Fresh mozzarella, roma tomatoes, basil with a touch of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. This is also called caprese, tricolore salad, and "tomatoes with mozzarella." Whatever you want to call it, it's good.
Hungarian Goulash--Traditional braised beef, tomatoes, peppers, paprika (also served as a wrap)-I personally like it in the wrap.
Gypsy Stew--Colorful stew of chicken, beef, and lamb, with mushrooms, olives, peppers, squashes, tomatoes, and herbs on a bed of brown lentils.
This is a great place for regional food in a beautiful, Victorian setting. My mom likes the Kentucky Hot Brown and claims that it's the best to be found. I personally like the shrimp. For brunch you can have a great Hawaiian chicken salad, complete with little banana nut bread muffins. We almost never make it to Lexington for brunch unless we've spent the night at the Radisson or Hyatt. If you eat there during the week it's nice to walk around Victorian Square afterwards. They have some neat little shops and it's a good way to walk off heavy food.
Favorite Dish: The famous Kentucky Hot Brown (what my mom always orders):
A Kentucky tradition. A lunch portion of sliced breast of turkey smothered in a rich cream sauce, topped with cheddar cheese, crisp bacon and tomatoes broiled to a golden brown. It's rich, so be warned!!
Strips of chicken in a coconut breading, served with honey mustard sauce for dipping. Not really comparable to Atomic Cafe's coconut shrimp though.
Golden Fried Shrimp:
Select shrimp, butterflied and lightly breaded then deep fried. Served with cocktail sauce and steak fries. This is pretty good. Had it a couple of times. My friend Bobbie Sue claims it's the best she's ever had.
Sampler includes potato skins, stuffed banana peppers, and coconut chicken. I'd go for this if you weren't sure what you wanted. The stuffed banana peppers are pretty good, too.
Certified Angus Beef tenderloin filet char-grilled in a garlic butter with sauteed mushrooms and a Cabernet bordelaise. But then again, I love filet mignon so I am a little biased.
Also noteworthy: the stuffed mushrooms.
My Old Kentucky Dinner Train: A small tour of real Kentucky
What makes the meal so special is the scenery passing by while you dine, which is prepared right on board in the kitchen car. Served are a variety of entrée choices, including vegetarian dishes, plus a selection of delicious desserts. Cocktails and premium wines are also available.
Favorite Dish: I've tried the Kentucky Hot Brown and the tilapia which are both very good, but the prime rib is excellent.Related to:
Halls on the River- Winchester
Although technically in Winchester, this restaurant is right over the county line on the other side of the river from Richmond and we tend to forget that it is not ours. It’s been around for a long time. I used to think that I was a jinx to it because every time I ate there something bad would happen to it the next day-it got flooded, caught on fire…Anyway, it has a nice location on the Kentucky River (hence the name) and you can get good views of it from the terrace and certain windows.
Halls is famous for their beer cheese although I think Bananas on the River down the road has better. The shrimp has always been good and they have great baked potatoes. (I judge restaurants on the quality and size of baked potatoes. Is that weird?) We've also tried the snowcrab legs and they were tasty as well.
On the weekends they sometimes have live bands in their bar. Mostly country, but occasioanlly an oldies band. Nothing TOO heavy. It's nice to sit in there and listen to the music and have a drink.
They have places for dining al fresco if you’re into that (we are) and they have a room where you can listen to bands on the weekend. In the basement there’s a good size room that you can reserve for meetings, birthdays, reunions, or whatever you need it for. In the summertime on the weekends it can get packed and you can actually have a long wait so it pays to call ahead. I was down there the other night and I think the wait was over an hour.
In the summertime there is nowhere better to be than in the patio area of the Atomic Cafe, listening to music and eating. I LOVE this place. I can proudly say that I introduced all of my ex-boyfriends to it. It's Caribbean food at its best. Although the service is a little slow, and the food pricey, the taste all makes up for it. You should definitely go in the summer when you can sit outside on the patio. They usually have live reggae bands on the weekends.
After eating, check out Third Street Stuff next door. They've also opened a new coffee bar if you want to stop in for a drink there.
Favorite Dish: Let's see...the coconut shrimp? Or the chicken breast stuffed with shrimp and spinach? The black beans and rice? Or the macaroni and cheese? No, no, the rum berry cake. Oh, heck. It's all good. PS- try the B-52 as a shot fave. Not made with absinthe like in Czech, but still pretty darn good.
Papa Leno's- Berea
Some good things just never die. I’ve been eating at this place for nearly 17 years now. And, unfortunately, I’ve been ordering the same thing. Hot ham and cheese on homemade bread or a bowl of Wisconsin cheese soup. I don’t know why. Habit, maybe? But anyway, this is a great little place on College Square, around the corner from Boone Tavern. It’s a very old world kind of restaurant with wooden booths and dark corners and has become a favorite with the college crowd. If you’re in the mood for pizza, subs, or pasta, it’s definitely the place to go in Berea.
I've said this before, but if you really want to see Appalachian arts then you need to come all the way into Berea and not just stop at the Artisan Center. Papa Lenos has many nice shops around it and can be part of a pleasurable afternoon.
Favorite Dish: Personally, I like the spaghetti with meat sauce. Maybe it's funny that I got to a restaurant and make something that I could have at home, but, well, I don't cook. And the sauce is really really good.
Jim's Seafood: Best Food in Frankfort
Surprisingly fresh seafood from the Gulf daily. Nice view of the River and quaint, smple atmosphere. Everything I've had here has been great.
Favorite Dish: The fried green tomatoes are excelent here and all the food is fresh and hot.Related to:
- Road Trip
Sanders Cafe: Corbin, Home of Kentucky Fried Chicken
Colonel Harlan Sanders was my kind of man. His resume included: farm hand, streetcar conductor, soldier, and railroad fireman. He studied law by correspondance and parcticed in Justice of the Peace courts, operated an Ohio River steamboat ferry, sold tires, and operated a service station. At the age of 65, now retired, he took his $105 per month Social Security Check and started Sanders Cafe. The year was 1939. You know the rest of the story. KFC is now established in 80 countries and territories of the world, serving 6 billion pieces of fried chicken anually.
We recently took our grandchildren through Corbin and stopped in at the site of the original Sanders Cafe. Next to the restaurant is a museum which preserves Sanders first kitchen with much of the original equipment and decor. It also gives highlights of this amazing American success story. You'll never view KFC the same.
Favorite Dish: Nothing beats the KFC original receipe, with that secret blend of 11 herbs and spices.Related to:
- Food and Dining
- Road Trip
- Museum Visits
As anywhere in the USA, fast food can be found all over the place. The ones we like most a Fazoli's, Wendy, Bob Evans, Kracker Barrel ens.
Some fine local restaurants are to be found too and especially the Amish people run a few excellent restaurants. Enjoy.
Favorite Dish: My favorite is spare ribs !!!!
Buck's restaurant..in the old...
Buck's restaurant..in the old Mayflower Hotel
New york bar atmosphere with piano player, great decor, fantastic bar !The Best kept secret in Louisville.
Favorite Dish: Soft shell crabs (when available..they serve the whaler size crabs which are very select and difficult to find..Buck the owner is from the Eastern Shore of Maryland and is able to have the crabs flown in)..Henry..the fifth..two excellent tenderloin strips with two sauces, bordeaux and bernaise..plus specials that are incredible...
Claudia Sanders Dinner House: Claudia Sanders---Authentic KFC Country
This restaurant is as much of a tourist attraction as it is to get a taste of Kentucky homecooking. Col. Harland Sanders built this restaurant, named after his wife in 1964, after he had become a millionaire from the sale of Kentucky Fried Chicken. Guests ariving at Claudia Sanders enter an Italian porcelain tiled foyer with a grand antebellum styled staircase. To the right is the receptionist area and a gift shop. Guests will enjoy their dining experience in one of four elegantly decorated dining room: The Thoroughbred Room, The Saddlebred Room, The Kentucky Room, and The Colonel's Quarters.
Favorite Dish: Of course you're going to have the chicken, although there's also country baked ham and eight vegetable items that truly steal the show. The homemade yeast rolls and corn muffins are worth commenting on.
Try the breaded stewed tomatoes and creamed spinach. YUMM!Related to:
- Arts and Culture
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
Stoney River: Stoney River---Great Steaks
Stoney River is a high end spin off of the popular O'Charleys chain that boasts legendary steaks. The restaurant works hard to fit in the already saturated steakhouse niche. The heavy wood decor and high back leather booths give it a lodge like feel, complimented by a large square bar in the center of the restaurant, and a few couches cozied up by a stone fireplace. The service was outstanding and I would highly recommend making reservations as we had an hour wait.
Favorite Dish: Dinner starts with delightful deep fried slightly coarse grained rolls served with whipped cinnamon-honey butter, that are delicious enough to be classified as dessert. My date and I ordered the following:
Mixed Greens w/ bacon, cheese, tomato, almonds---
Your average pre-dinner salad
Homemade Caesar Salad---
My boyfriend never eats salad with dressing, but he oohed and aahhhed about this
Pecan Encrusted Swordfish w/ Garlic Mashed Potatoes & Broccoli---
The swordfish was the best seafood I've had in Louisville, as fresh seems to be
a challenge in this landlocked city. The fish was as thick as a steak and was
prepared to perfection.
Ribeye w/ Mashed Sweet Potatoes & Green Beans----
The ribeye was succulent and I rarely eat steak! The mashed sweet potatoes were
certainly worthy of mention as well.
Overall Stoney River is a great up and coming chain although nothing in my opinion sets it greatly apart from the competition.Related to:
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
- Luxury Travel
- Business Travel
The Old Stone Inn: Old Stone Inn---Relaxing Sunday Brunch
The Old Stone Inn, a national historic landmark, was built in 1817 by slave labor with stones taken from a quarry on the farm site of this frontier coach stop. Its two-foot thick stone walls still bear bullet holes from the Civil War. It has served as a tavern, stagecoach stop, inn, residence, and since the 1920s, a restaurant. Accommodation is provided in rooms. Upstairs at the Old Stone Inn, they have converted a generous common area into an art gallery, featuring regional art, crafts, and artists. The restaurant serves dinner Thursday through Saturday. They serve lunch Thursday through Sunday
Favorite Dish: I had an elegant Sunday afternoon brunch complete with made to order waffles with fresh blueberries, srawberries, and whipped cream as well as some great lunch fare. The food was average, but is perfect for the occasion when you have many palettes to please.Related to:
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
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