Favorite restaurants countdown– #6

The countdown to this point:

10. Ollie’s Trolley, Louisville, KY

9. China Express, Middlesboro, KY

8. Louis’, Knoxville, TN

7. Moonlite Bar-B-Q, Owensboro, KY

6. Claudia Sanders Dinner House, Shelbyville, KY

Think Mrs. Colonel Sanders. While the Colonel gave us the twin gifts of some really greasy fried chicken and his white-suited self, Mrs. Claudia Sanders was a bit more refined.

The fried chicken at Claudia Sanders’ is really, really good. It’s infinitely less greasy than most, generally consists of massive pieces (see whole chickens), and is nicely and subtlely flavored. You can get any of a number of other entrees, all of which I recall as pretty good too.  

The best way to eat at Claudia Sanders’ is either showing up for a buffet night or ordering a dinner which includes their eight family style vegetables. I’ve never found anybody who likes all eight vegetables, but I’ve also not found anybody who didn’t chow down on four or five of them. I would list them, but it’s been entirely too long since I’ve been at CSDH and I’ve forgotten a few.

CSDH is the sort of place that has something for everybody. Good deserts, outstanding chicken and numerous sides, and nice ambience. It’s the kind of restaurant you could take your grandparents to, and yet you would enjoy it yourself.

If you’re in Louisville, head east on I-64, and if you’re in Lexington or Frankfort, head west. A very nice (and fairly economic) dinner awaits.



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4 Responses to “Favorite restaurants countdown– #6”

  1. Barbara C. Says:

    I think the chicken there is supposed to be closer to the Colonel’s original recipe before Yum Foods (or whoever owned the franchise at the time) changed it. You still hear people around Louisville complain about when they changed the recipe, especially people who actually met Colonel Sanders a few times and ate his chicken before it became big. I never made it to Claudia Sanders restaurant, but I’ve been to her grave, assuming she’s buried next to her husband.

  2. eljoe1235 Says:

    The Colonel was notoriously cantankerous about changes to KFC. I recall reading that in the ’70s, he was sued by the parent corporation after he said something about the gravy tasting like wallpaper paste.


  3. Teresa Says:

    the best part about Claudia Sanders is the conversations about ligers you can have with you father while dining there.

  4. eljoe1235 Says:

    For the uninitiated, the only time Teresa and I have shared the experience of Claudia Sanders Dinner House, in mid-meal our father regaled us all with a fine tale of “this new animal”, the liger. He’s never seen Napoleon Dynamite, and the absurdity of the whole thing somehow inspired us to laugh until physically ill. I guess you had to be there.


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