Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09

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AaronM
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2009/01/25 12:00:01 (permalink)

Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09

30 years ago my parents were married in Louisville, KY. The night before their wedding they all went out for dinner at Claudia Sanders Dinner House in  Shelbyville, KY. Yesterday, my parents, girlfriend, sister and I returned.
 
What a wonderful place. I arrived hungry and left satisfied.
 
 

 

 

 

 

 
 
I got the all you can eat fried chicken. It comes with salad, wonderful rolls, and 8 kinds of veggies. The top plate is mine.
 
The Chicken was great.  Perfectly seasoned and moist. Amazingly though, the veggies were the highlight. The dinner came with Baked Apples, Harvard Beets, Green Beans, Mock Oysters, Corn Pudding, Breaded Stewed Tomatoes, Creamed Spinach & Mashed Potatoes. I wasn't a huge fan of the beats or the apples(both were a little too sweet for me)...but all of the others were amazing. I especially liked the creamed spinach and the mock oysters (aka Eggplant Casserole.) 
 
The prices were right, people friendly, and food excellent. I can't wait to go back!
 
 
 
post edited by AaronM - 2009/01/25 12:04:11
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36 Replies Related Threads

    Nancypalooza
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 12:01:44 (permalink)
    I love places that do a good job with the veggies--wonderful pictures Aaron!
    #2
    AaronM
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 12:05:52 (permalink)
    Thanks Nancy! The veggies really were amazing. I need to figure out how to make that creamed spinach. The breaded stewed tomateos were unlike anything I've ever had before. Very unique and very tasty.
    #3
    ann peeples
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 12:15:39 (permalink)
    Wow-what a plateful of good looking food.There is an awesome creamed spinach recipe on the Recipezarr website I have used before. For some reason I am having trouble cutting and pasting...Thanks for the report!
    #4
    mayor al
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 12:17:50 (permalink)
    We have been going to Claudia Sanders for years. I had a review of the place on the restaurant list, but it is no longer there.
     Our Favorites are the Combo AYCE dinner of Chicken and Livers. Janet loves the Veggies more than the Chicken!! I love the Beets and the corn pudding most of all. I can pass on the Mashed Potato/gravy as it is a Milk Gravy that I find too mild for my tastes. I also don't care much for the Mock Oysters which are like an Egg Plant Stuffing sort of dish.
      Sundays thay have a large Buffet in addition to the regular dining room operation. Carved Turkey and Roast Beef and a huge dessert selection are available on the Buffet which sells for the same price as the menu AYCE dinners.
       Most of all we love the ambience of the Dinner House. It is very nice without being 'snobby'. Nice linen table service and polite staff in a Genteel Horse Farm atmosphere!

    Thanks your your report. We agree with you evaluation 100%
    #5
    Louis
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 16:16:32 (permalink)
    I agree.  This is a wonderful, elegant place to dine.  When I first came upon this restaurant in the early 1990s, I was bowled over by the breaded stewed tomatoes; the taste was unlike anything I'd eaten in the tomato category up to that point.  It was like candy that was good for you.

    I suspect the fried chicken recipe served here is the one that Duncan Hines discovered when he first entered Harlan Sanders restaurant in Corbin, Kentucky in 1939.  He had not began to use the pressure cooker yet, and the method of preparing fried chicken that this restaurant serves is undoubtedly the one that he was using at the time.

    I have learned to stay away from the buffet.  On one occasion my fried chicken had a lot of country ham flavor.  I ordered off the menu after that.

    Still, it is one of the premiere dining spots in the state and shouldn't be missed.

    #6
    buffetbuster
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 17:38:25 (permalink)
    Fine photos and report AaronM.  I'm sure this was a sentimental journey for your parents.  Did they happen to mention if it is still the same place (food and atmosphere) as it was 30 years ago?
    #7
    myterry2
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 17:48:32 (permalink)
    What a fine looking plate....looks like a 10 to me.
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    mayor al
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 18:14:32 (permalink)
    BB
     The Dinner House burned to the ground in 1999 and has been rebuilt (obviously) since. I don't know if they did a restoration-rebuild, or if the new structure is a different layout than the original. It is a very pleasant dining establishment!
    They have a very nice website--
      http://www.claudiasanders.com/index.html
     
    BTW- Both Janet and I love the Stewed Tomatoes!! I don't think I have ever made a positive comment about that form of Tomato before...But Claudia Sanders Knows how to make them delicious !! And since no one else has mentioned it, with the AYCE  dinners they will keep bringing any and all of those eight Veggie bowls back for more !!
    post edited by Al-The Mayor-Bowen - 2009/01/25 18:30:17
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    buffetbuster
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 18:23:04 (permalink)
    Al-
    I wasn't aware of that.  Based on your review, I visited a few years ago and it didn't feel "new" to me.  Which is probably what they were trying to achieve with the rebuild.  BTW, I give the food here a thumbs up, too!  Cousin Johnny still hasn't forgiven me, since this is where I ate on the way to picking him up at the airport, so he has never been there.  He really enjoyed me telling him all about how good the meal without him was!

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    AaronM
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 20:48:28 (permalink)
    buffetbuster

    Fine photos and report AaronM.  I'm sure this was a sentimental journey for your parents.  Did they happen to mention if it is still the same place (food and atmosphere) as it was 30 years ago?


    The food was how they remembered it...delicious and very Southern. The resturant itself was bigger, newer...as it burned down in 1999 and was rebuilt.
     
    #11
    Louis
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 21:22:02 (permalink)
    Having dined in the original, I can attest that it was a much smaller building before it burned down, maybe as much as three or four times smaller.  It was compact.  Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the original Claudia Sanders Dinner House--before it became a restaurant--was the Kentucky Fried Chicken warehouse until 1962.  I believe it became a restaurant in 1968/1969.

    #12
    mayor al
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/25 21:38:50 (permalink)
    That's a bit before my time in Kentucky, Louis. I'll have to take your word for it !!  BTW just down the road a couple of miles is the Ken-Tex BBQ, in Shelbyville. Not bad Texas Style BBQ at fairly reasonable prices.
    #13
    Louis
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 00:30:07 (permalink)
    Thanks, Al.  I'll try to remember that one.  I can't recall a Texas-style BBQ location that I've run into in Kentucky.  There probably is more than one somewhere around the Lexington/Louisville area; it just hasn't been brought to my attention.  Next time I get over that way, I'll have to check Ken-Tex BBQ out.

    post edited by Louis - 2009/01/26 00:31:28
    #14
    Voyageur
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 10:30:44 (permalink)
    My parents and younger brother each had places between Louisville and Shelbyville, and we never went to Claudia Sanders. Damn!

    What a great report. Thank you.

    BTW, expect simply awesome vegetables all over the South. There's really an emphasis on making these delicious. In fact, quite a few places feature entrees of vegetable plates, and not because a lot of vegetarians make up their customer base, who wouldn't appreciate the pork used in the preparation of many green veggies anyway.
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    AaronM
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 12:56:15 (permalink)
    Voyageur

    My parents and younger brother each had places between Louisville and Shelbyville, and we never went to Claudia Sanders. Damn!

    What a great report. Thank you.

    BTW, expect simply awesome vegetables all over the South. There's really an emphasis on making these delicious. In fact, quite a few places feature entrees of vegetable plates, and not because a lot of vegetarians make up their customer base, who wouldn't appreciate the pork used in the preparation of many green veggies anyway.


    Ya, the green beans has some pretty wicked chunks of pork.
    #16
    carolina bob
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 14:05:22 (permalink)
    I'm happy to learn this about Claudia Sanders' place. I've driven past it a few times, but have never considered eating there. The restaurant's Colonel Sanders / KFC connection has always been a turn-off for me, but it looks like I may have prejudged the place unfairly. I'll have to check it out on a future KY roadtrip.  
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    AaronM
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 14:15:41 (permalink)
    nocarolina

    I'm happy to learn this about Claudia Sanders' place. I've driven past it a few times, but have never considered eating there. The restaurant's Colonel Sanders / KFC connection has always been a turn-off for me, but it looks like I may have prejudged the place unfairly. I'll have to check it out on a future KY roadtrip.  


    The food was far from fast food, real Southern cooking. It has been years since I’ve eaten at KFC, but it was easy to tell that this Chicken was worlds better.

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    mayor al
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 14:26:36 (permalink)
    They do use the Original Recipe for the Fried Chicken, but It has always reminded me of what KFC was back in the 60's when we loved the stuff. It is done with a certain amount of pride in the product. I have not been served "bad" chicken there ever. I really like the Chicken Livers though. That's my choice when we go. But the Veggies are the prime consideration !
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    AaronM
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 14:38:22 (permalink)
    mayor al

    They do use the Original Recipe for the Fried Chicken, but It has always reminded me of what KFC was back in the 60's when we loved the stuff. It is done with a certain amount of pride in the product. I have not been served "bad" chicken there ever. I really like the Chicken Livers though. That's my choice when we go. But the Veggies are the prime consideration !

    I love chicken livers too. Next time!

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    jmckee
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/01/26 15:35:49 (permalink)
    OH, I have to make a point of going there. I've wondered on and off whether it was any good. Thanks for the tip-- and the mouthwatering pics.
    #21
    enginecapt
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/02/23 11:30:22 (permalink)
    Can someone explain the mock oysters? I like oysters and I like eggplant, but how those two can be in the same name together baffles me.

    I wish I could get fare like that around here.
    #22
    Rusty246
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/02/23 11:40:36 (permalink)
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    mayor al
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/02/23 11:47:33 (permalink)
    Capt. Jack,
       The Mock Oysters make a 'veggie cassarole' that looks a lot like a cross between spinach and stuffing (as in Thanksgiving bird-filler). It does taste, to quote my wife, like stuffing made with eggplant. How it came to it's "oyster" name is a mystery to me.
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    enginecapt
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/02/23 12:15:13 (permalink)
    Hmmmm... looks a bit bland, but I'd be willing to try it, as I'm a major fan of the melanzana.
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    scrumptiouschef
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/06/02 13:49:23 (permalink)
    Ken-Tex not bad?
     I live in Austin and run out to Lockhart,Luling and Taylor way more than I should and I think Ken-Tex is very good.
     They could make money out here and that's not true of many out of Texas barbecue joints I hit when I travel.
    I must've hit Claudia on a bad day last time I ate there as it was terrible.If you can oversalt my food you've really accomplished something as I love salt but this place had me guzzling water for two days.
    I'm always looking for good barbecue in Kentucky[not Owensboro]and Ken-Tex does it right.
    #26
    rumaki
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/06/02 13:58:46 (permalink)
    As I reported in a separate thread, my husband and I had a wonderful lunch a couple of weeks ago at the Science Hill Inn (in the Wakefield-Scearce Galleries building, which was once a young ladies' seminary) in Shelbyville.  Excellent hot browns and chicken salad; exemplary hot water corn bread; delightful service in a "ladies who lunch" atmosphere (but you don't have to get dressed up to eat there, at least not during the week).  They're open Tuesday through Sunday for lunch.  I believe Sunday is a buffet.
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    thefluffyturtle
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/06/17 23:11:42 (permalink)
    I have to agree with AL.....my take?  THE BEST LIVERS IN THE SOUTH!!!!
    #28
    mayor al
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/06/17 23:18:54 (permalink)

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    monktrout
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    Re:Shelbyville, Kentucky 1/24/09 2009/06/19 17:18:29 (permalink)

    Haven't been to Ken-Tex BBQ in a while, but it is delicious. Brisket and beans were both excellent. If you are near Shelbyville definitely worth a stop.
    #30
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