Catfish Houses

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mayor al
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2003/04/06 10:58:40 (permalink)

Catfish Houses

SUNDANCE
We gotta have the name and location of that fish-farm to put on our 'futures' list!!
I will do a write-up soon on our stop yesterday at theRIVERVIEW near Ashland City TN. A beautiful location with tables overlooking the Cumberland River just off Rt.49. Menu had Catfish first, but other seafood and regular dinner items also. They operate a 2 hour tour of the nearby river area using a large pontoon boat to see the bird and plant life, which was quite colorful in the Spring Sunlight. Tours at 4 and 6:30pm ($8). It was a really nice place to relax in a low-key atmosphere and watch the river flow by.
#1

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    rxhill
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/07/16 07:53:33 (permalink)
    If you're ever traveling between Little Rock and Memphis, you have to stop in at Nick's in Carlisle (about 30 miles East of LR). They have excellent catfish.
    #2
    jlewis8310
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/07/28 12:06:28 (permalink)
    My family and I leave for Gatlinburg, TN in 2 weeks. We are very interested in eating at a good catfish house in the area. Al-the-Mayor Bowen told about thr Riverview and noted that he wld write about his visit, but have been unable to locate it if there is one. The pontoon tour sounds like so much fun! Then--SUNDANCER told about Allison's Catfish, but did not mention a specific town, etc. Would like to know more about these restaurants...afterall--going on a roadtrip is also one big dining adventure! Thank you
    #3
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/07/28 12:23:30 (permalink)
    If you are going to Gatlingburg, you will be getting off interstate 40 at the Sevierville Exit which I believe may be exit 407 (I hope). There are two immediate catfish places that are excellent. on the road from interstate to Sevierville, you will pass Catfish Willies lon the right. Opens at 4:00PM duirng the week and may open earlier on week-ends. Super great Catfish and hushpuppies. I have always had the fish and it was perfect. Also on the way, you will see a sign that directs you to ":Cowboys" It is on the lake and you will have to turn off the road and go about six miles. It is also very good.

    In Pigeon Forge, I suggest you go to "The Apple Barn". They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The place is owned by a friend of mine and it is a huge complex of gift shops, motels, two restaurants, winery candy shop, bakery etc. Real neat tourist stop with excellent food. Breakfast is real good and the chicken fiend is excellent. On the right going into Pigeon Forge.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #4
    jlewis8310
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/08/15 18:47:53 (permalink)
    Thank you Sundancer for your suggestions. We leave tomorrow morning for Gatlinburg. We plan to have dinner at the Ridgewood, staying overnight in Johnson City. (We are coming from Maryland)The next day, our plans are to head to Litton's for a burger per an earlier recommendation of yours in a previous message and then on to the place we have rented for 4 nights.Please tell me---if we have time for ONLY one catfish house (darn it!) which would you pick--Catfish Willie's or Cowboys? Also--if you have any thoughts re: the Peddler and/or the Burning Bush, I would really appreciate them.Oh--and also the Old Mill. All of which I have read a great deal about, but know nothing re: the authors of the reviews. (I have read quite a number of your posts and tend to feel we agree on the same sort of things when it comes to food, therefore "trust" your opinion.)

    After Galinburg, we head to the Dillard House. Boy, what a great report you wrote on the restaurant!!!!I was looking forward to having lunch there earlier, but now I really am. (Incidentally--your kids are adorable and I like your idea re: having a contest to see who can eat the most new foods)

    After Dillard we head for an overnight in Asheville.Think my kids wld not really enjoy touring the Biltmore as much as we would, so have considered spending time at Lake Lure?

    After Asheville--we are headed back home through Statesville, NC--to Keatons for dinner. A friend and I attended one of Jane and Michael's talks last fall at the Smithsonian in Wash (actually I was fortunate to sit beside Michael and briefly talk w/ both of them)promoting their new book at the time. They talked about Keaton's (among other places) and I decided right then and there that it was a place I wanted to plan a trip around.That was just less than a yr ago and we are going........!

    Any help and additional thoughts from you re: our trip are most appreciated! Judy
    #5
    Rick F.
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/08/16 00:29:37 (permalink)
    This isn't really connected to the road trip, but have to put in a plug. (My son works at this joint but, insanely, doesn't eat fish.) After eating catfish in Mississippi, Arkansas, and Kentucky, and all over Tennessee, the best I've ever found is atMama's Oyster House in Natchitoches, LA.

    As soon as I get some more photos I'm going to try to post it as a roadfood place, because it has some (if not all) of the qualifications: casual (the owner makes rounds and presses the flesh wearing shorts and a tee-shirt), reasonably priced, attentively served, and does a mean Turkey and soda, which counts for a lot around here. Also overlooks the lakefront seen in "Steel Magnolias," which was filmed here.
    #6
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/08/16 04:54:20 (permalink)
    Jlewis8310: As far as Catfish Willys and Cowboys, Cowboys has the best setting overlooking the lake but has been a bit inconsistent. I would do Catfish Willys and in addition it is easier to get to. It is on the road from interstate to Sevierville and on the right. You cannot mis it.

    You will absolutely enjoy Littons. Never got a bad meal there.

    While you are in Pigeon Forge, please go to the Apple Barn. Besides a great place to eat, it is beautiful and a lot to do there.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #7
    jlewis8310
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/08/16 09:39:29 (permalink)
    SUNDANCER:
    Good morning and thanks for the quick reply! We are out the door now, but am bringing along my laptop just in case I need it........If you just happen to have any last minute thoughts pls let me know. The Apple Barn is DEFINATELY on our list. By the way, is the Old Mill worth going to and/or the Mill Square? Judy
    #8
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/08/16 10:08:24 (permalink)
    Jlewis8310: I cannot give any advice on the Old Mill or the other one.

    Breakfast and lunch or dinner at the Apple Barn is real good. Excellent fried chicken and the breakfast is super.

    Go on down to their big barn where the largest gift shop is and go into the baker and get one of their fried pies with ice cream and coffee.

    Bill Kilpatrick who is a pharmacist owns it and works there all the time. He is a great person and his concept is wonderful. I spent six years in the Air National Guard with him and was in his brothers wedding.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #9
    Poverty Pete
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/10/31 19:29:26 (permalink)
    I stumbled upon a really fine catfish lunch today. I have never seen this place written up before, but I'm going back to investigate the rest of the menu. It's called Betty's Parkway Restaurant in Columbia, Tn. Their specialty seems to be a marinated steak, so I think I'll try that next time. Has anybody else heard of this place? It's too good to be undiscovered.
    #10
    Ralph Isbill
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/10/31 22:51:53 (permalink)
    If you ever find yourself in Vicksburg MS, be sure to try the catfish at
    Randy's Family Restaurant
    Highway 27
    Vicksburg, MS 39180
    601-638-2375
    They have the best catfish and fried oysters!! Try the blackeyed peas served in a little black pot. You are sure to loosen your belt.
    #11
    Liketoeat
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/10/31 23:24:05 (permalink)
    Somehow I just missed this "Catfish House" topic. Ate at a new (to me) catfish restaurant this past weekend, about which posted in the "What Are Your Weekend Plans" or "What Are You Doing This Weeekend" topic. But this restaurant had such great food and was such a totally enjoyable experience (one of those finds about which you are truly happy), that feel the section of my "weekend" post concerning it needs to be posted here (and it also has some relationship to the two posts immediately above), so here goes:

    "We then went for late lunch at Hagy's Catfish Hotel Restaurant, immediately north of the {Shiloh National Military} Park {at Shiloh, TN}. What an eating treat that was! Hagy's is reached by going down a little wooded road which opens onto this beautiful clearing right on a bluff overlooking the Tennessee River. The restaurant is the only thing there other than a little old log shack. Don't think I've ever seen a restaurant so isolated, "off by itself" in such a lovely, peaceful setting. Guess restaurant building is sort of on the order of a lodge with a front sitting porch and all glass front walls through which diners can look out over the beautiful grounds & Tennessee River. There is even a stairway one can go down to the very banks of the river (surprised that is permitted what with this days litigious society). Not only is the setting so lovely, but the food was fabulous. Menu offered several varieties of catfish, other seafood, and believe various poultry, beef, and barbecue selections (I really wasn't paying that much attention after seeing the catfish). I went with the just plain fried catfish which was the most delicately flavored (both coating and fish itself) catfish I've ever eaten; and it was by far the most grease free fried fish I've ever had. Potatoes, hushpuppies, and especially the unique slaw were all just as delicious. Had a taste of Don's white chocolate banana custard pie (great) altho its a lemon chess type pie for which they are most famous. If anyone is ever touring Shiloh or traveling thru the area, I heartily recommend Hagy's Catfish Hotel, which is still owned by descendants of the original 1938 founding family, with its current building dating from 1976. Try it if you are in the area! Would add that Don said as good as Hagy's catfish is, he thinks that at Taylor's in the Oxford {MS} area is even better, but Delores prefers Hagy's. See they are both included in "TopTen" list of national catfish restaurants in rating by some national catfish institute."

    Surely wish I was going to be back over at Shiloh this weekend for another catfish pig out at Hagy's.
    #12
    spadoman
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/11/01 06:44:32 (permalink)
    In 1980, my wife came with me on a trip while I was emploted as a truck driver.
    We went from Minneapolis to Fort Polk, Louisianna.

    On the way back, we went through Shreveport and stopped at a place called :
    Poochies Catfish Haven

    anyone ever hear of it or tried it? Is it still there?

    I vaguely remember it being near water and having a boardwalk of some kind, oh, and good catfish n' hushpuppies too.
    #13
    Liketoeat
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2003/11/01 14:32:17 (permalink)
    While stopped from some Saturday work around the house to have a peanut butter & jelly sandwich for lunch (during which time was so wishing I was having instead Catfish Hotel catfish as was enjoying about this time of day last Sat.), I happed to think that the Hotel might have a website, and lo & behold, it does. For an interesting website and good info in event ever headed in that direction, go to & click though http://www.catfishhotel.com/ . Back to work now.
    #14
    CatfishCC
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/25 17:23:39 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Ralph Isbill

    If you ever find yourself in Vicksburg MS, be sure to try the catfish at
    Randy's Family Restaurant
    Highway 27
    Vicksburg, MS 39180
    601-638-2375
    They have the best catfish and fried oysters!! Try the blackeyed peas served in a little black pot. You are sure to loosen your belt.


    The name of this place is ROWDY's Family Restaurant.
    #15
    Ort. Carlton.
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/25 18:54:20 (permalink)
    Dearfolk,
    There are a slew of fish camps in the Gastonia, North Carolina area. This is some sort of a tradition there (akin to livermush, which got its commercial start in Shelby, 20 miles or so west).
    In this vicinity, there are quite a few catfish places, but I haven't been lucky enough to be dragged to any as of yet. I will report back when I find something.
    Atlanta has a wondrous old-time catfish eatery - The Rio Vista on 42 Highway on Conley. It's only a skip outside I-285, heading south toward Macon, out in the midst of all the truck terminals. It's not only most Sternable, it's nearly as quaint as Pilgreen's Steak House in S/W Atlanta ever was. If any of y'all go, see if they'll light their huge neon sign for you so you can get a photo: it still works. Unlike me, anymore than I have to.
    Not Johnny-Come-Filetly, Ort. Carlton in Athens, Georgia.
    P. S. I have no bone to pick with anyone (the old Rio Vista ads read "Come pick a bone with us.").
    #16
    stormycat
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/25 19:05:09 (permalink)
    There is a great all you can eat place in Farmington Missouri called the Catfish Kettle. Also, I love the fried catfish at Dwyer's in Lafayette, LA.
    #17
    Michael Stern
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/25 19:33:03 (permalink)
    While we're on the subject, I love the "thin catfish" at Middendorf's in Akers, LA:

    #18
    seafarer john
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/25 20:23:06 (permalink)
    The Shellcracker Restaurant in Salt Springs, FL ( on FL Rt 19 northeast of Ocala) serves all you can eat catfish. You are given a choice of filets or whole tiny little fish - fried, of course. I 've been there twice and have had the whole little catfish- they are super! An order is about six whole fish served with coleslaw and various sides, but they'll keep bringing them as long as you'll eat them..
    #19
    Ort. Carlton.
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/25 20:27:58 (permalink)
    Dearfolk,
    This is redundundant to another post in part, but I left out Barrow's Shady Inn on Mistletoe Street in New Orleans. It's not far off Earnhardt Blvd. nor U. S. 90 - Jefferson Highway - when it passes by the big water plant. Their motto is "Think catfish!"
    Thinking Until It Nearly About Hurts, Ort. Carlton in Athens, GA.
    #20
    lleechef
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/25 20:43:10 (permalink)
    Oh, that catfish looks sooooooo good Mr. Stern! I want some right now with some Tabasco! Thanks for the awesome pic!
    #21
    Maynerd
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/26 11:41:09 (permalink)
    Missed this topic too. If you are ever in Dallas, Check out Top Cat. Good fish, little breading, good hushpuppies and excellent fries. I think there are two or three locations in town. I go to the one on Lemmon Ave. Near by on Lemmon is the "Prince of Hamburgers" that's a drive in with curb service that's been around since the '30's. Both Top Cat and Prince's are near Love Field airport.
    #22
    Ralph Isbill
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/26 13:50:29 (permalink)
    catfishcc--you are right it is Rowdy'sCan I blame my poor typing?
    #23
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/27 17:56:13 (permalink)
    I was in Clarksville, TN and I had dinner at a great catfish place called "River View" I think. I discussed this with the Mayor on our BBQ thing in Tennessee and I believe he had visited there. I got hot fresh, tender catfish with great sides of beans, slaw, hushpuppies and other goodies;.

    It ain't often that I enjoy a place like that. The view was great and the food was even better.

    It is just across the river from Clarksville.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #24
    Zman
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/27 23:46:32 (permalink)
    I was spoiled as a child. The only catfish we had were caught from the cold, fast-flowing waters of the Missouri river downstream of Vermillion, So. Dak.
    Farm raised Cats are a bland,soft fish with little flavor.
    The channel catfish were EXCELLENT, and the flatheads are " to die for"!
    Occasionally my Grampa would snag a spoonbill catfish, and the feast was ON!
    Wild fish RULE! No matter if you're talking catfish or salmon ...There is no substitute for wild fish.
    #25
    tiki
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/02/28 06:54:26 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Zman

    I was spoiled as a child. The only catfish we had were caught from the cold, fast-flowing waters of the Missouri river downstream of Vermillion, So. Dak.
    Farm raised Cats are a bland,soft fish with little flavor.
    The channel catfish were EXCELLENT, and the flatheads are " to die for"!
    Occasionally my Grampa would snag a spoonbill catfish, and the feast was ON!
    Wild fish RULE! No matter if you're talking catfish or salmon ...There is no substitute for wild fish.

    I know that the best catfish in THIS area come off the end of my pole at from a pond on the nieghbors ranch! Sweetet meat in the state!Love them wild fish!
    #26
    queenb
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/03/12 06:57:21 (permalink)
    There's a very good, HUGE catfish house in Anniston Alabama...it's River Edge or Riverside, something like that (everyone in town knows!) It's very good, and so big you rarely have to wait.
    Like the last few posters above, I love that fresh caught fish! I'm having fits right now because crappie season is "on" and the wind has been too dangerous for the boat, or else raining buckets every time we've had days off lately! But this week looks to have possibilities so a fish fry may not be far away!
    #27
    Hillbilly
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/03/23 15:13:58 (permalink)
    I'm sure that I have suggested these in previous threads, but the "Catfish Houses" seems to cry out to include my 3 all time favorites.

    1. "Jerry's", a few miles South of I-20 on highway 49 going from Jackson, MS toward Hattiesburg;

    2. "The Catfish House", 1 mile east of I-65 (exit 179) north of Montgomery, Alabama;

    3. "Middendorf's" (see Michael's post and picture above) at I-55 (exit 15), Akers (or Manchac), Louisiana. Their thin cut is my wife's favorite, but I prefer the meatier servings at Jerry's and the Catfish House. This is just northwest of Lake Pontchartrain and is 15 miles north of I-10 and 15 miles south of I-12.
    #28
    Emerald
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/05/01 20:03:03 (permalink)
    I agree with you about FRESH WILD catfish.....yummm. They've been having to feed farm-raised fish antibiotics but now I hear they're trying deep sea fish "farms" so they won't have to worry so much about their health. Wish them luck with that one.
    #29
    plb
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    RE: Catfish Houses 2004/05/01 21:45:08 (permalink)
    Frank and Mary's in Pittsboro, Indiana was in an earlier edition of Roodfood. It was good when I was there years ago. I see from the web that it is still around.

    Phil B.
    #30
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