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More Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP Eats

Grocery Store Hacks: More Ways To Save At Your Local Kroger

Hey, y’all!

When I think about the life lessons that have been instilled in me by family, the first one that comes to mind is frugality. As you know, I believe in eating well, traveling often, and living my life to the fullest – however, that is easier to do when you are able to put more back into savings with each paycheck.

As a food writer, one of my largest expenses = my groceries. I don’t like to skimp on my ingredients, as I believe in quality over quantity. In that sense, I am “high cotton”, as we would say in the south. That said, I want to pay as little as I can for each ingredient – and Kroger helps me do so with ease. This is one of the main reasons that I am a devoted and loyal Kroger shopper. Fanatic, even. You decide.

If you have been to your local Kroger recently, it is likely that you noticed a change in signage; throughout the store, blue signs have been placed to show customers the three main ways that Kroger helps you maximize your shopping experience, while minimizing your cost: 1) great sales, 2) fuel points, and 3) digital coupons.

More Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP EatsMore Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP EatsMore Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP Eats

One thing is for sure: the sales are a’plenty at Kroger. I appreciate the new signage because it makes the sales and everyday low prices even easier to find. The sales at Kroger are a great way to stock up on necessities like vanilla extract, flour, lemons, olive oil, mayo, kosher salt, and butter – ingredients that I use regularly; however, it also enables you to expand your horizons with a smaller financial commitment. For example, lobster tails were on sale this week, as was my favorite Boar’s Head Smoked Gouda. These are items that might not be on your regular to-buy list, but they are much more attainable when at lower prices (which is when I buy them!).

More Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP EatsMore Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP Eats

Another fact about me: I drive an insane amount of miles. My car is 2.5 years old and I’ve already put 63,000 miles on it. Thus, I burn through gas faster than the average person; however, I tend not to worry about the financial cost because I get so many cents off at the gas pump from shopping at Kroger. The more you spend, the more you save; in all seriousness, I have paid between $1.00-$1.50/gallon for gasoline because of my Kroger Points. They are very easy to rack up & easy to redeem – by entering the number associated with your Kroger Plus Card, the pump will automatically prompt you to choose as to whether or not you want to redeem your points. I am often taken aback by how much I save; and the best part is that I had to spend the money at the grocery store anyway!

More Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP EatsMore Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP EatsMore Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP Eats

Last, but not least: digital coupons. We have our phones with us at all times – why not use them to save money? I was a little slow to move over to digital coupons, as I am a little old-fashioned and a creature of habit. That said – I’m sold. I’m never going back. Never ever. Case closed. The Kroger App makes it so easy to keep all of your coupons in one place, enables you to do all of the work before you go to the store (a great money saving tip!), and doesn’t require you to pack the paper coupons around (and lose them, as I have done more times than I’d like to admit). There are tons of deals on hundreds of items on the app – don’t miss out! Download the Kroger App, y’all!

More Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP EatsMore Ways To Save At Kroger | JCP Eats

Are y’all ready to save money? See ya at Kroger!

As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living.

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,

JC

FTC: This post is sponsored by Kroger; however, as always, all opinions are my own.

 

From Abe to Cave: The perfect day trip in Central Kentucky

From Abe to Cave: A Kentucky Trail For The Perfect Day Trip

Hey, y’all!

If you know anything about me, you know that I love Kentucky. Even more than that, however, you might also know that I love Central and Southern Kentucky. It’s God’s Country – and in my eyes, it’s hard to beat.

While the landscapes are easy on the eye, there’s so much to do and so much to learn in this area of the Commonwealth, as well. It’s rich in history! With that in mind, I present to you a perfect day trip that is chock-full of adventure, activities, food, and culture: From Abe to the Cave!

Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Park

2995 Lincoln Farm Rd., Hodgenville, KY 42748

The Abe in the trail? Well, no other than our sixteenth President Abraham Lincoln! The first president born west of the Appalachian Mountains, he was born in a log cabin on Sinking Springs Farm. According to the National Park Service, “the story of Lincoln’s journey from log cabin to the White House that began here has long been a powerful symbol of the unlimited possibilities of American life.  For almost a century, tourists and historians have come here to seek out the origins of the man and his virtues—honesty, unpretentiousness, tolerance, hard work, a capacity to forgive, and a clear-sighted vision of right and wrong.”

The approaching centennial of Lincoln’s birth brought interest in memorializing the president; in doing so, Robert Collier, publisher of Colliers Weekly, bought Sinking Springs Farm in 1905. He, along with his associates, formed the Abraham Lincoln Farm Association to build the memorial. To quote, “Over 120,000 individuals from across the country, including thousands of schoolchildren, contributed a total of about $350,000 for the memorial.” The cornerstone was dedicated in 1909 by President Theodore Roosevelt, while President Taft dedicated the space for the nation two years later.

From Abe to Cave: The perfect day trip in Central Kentucky

The small cabin reminds us of Lincoln’s beginnings, which were quite humble, and the granite + marble memorial building that houses the cabin is a luxurious, stunning reminder of Lincoln’s rich legacy in the United States.

From Abe to Cave: The perfect day trip in Central Kentucky

I am certain that y’all would love visiting the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Park, as it is a fantastic piece of national history!

Mammoth Cave National Park

After a morning spent in Larue County learning about President Lincoln, head on down to the second half of the Abe to Cave Trail by visiting Mammoth Cave National Park! Mammoth Cave is the longest cave system known in the world – and it’s right in our backyards in Central Kentucky. How fabulous is that?

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Fun Fact:

Did you know that Mammoth Cave National Park was deemed a national park in 1941, a World Heritage Site in 1981, and an International Biosphere Reserve in 1990? That’s why it attracts visitors from nearby and afar, internationally and domestically!

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From Abe to Cave: The perfect day trip in Central Kentucky

The park spans into Edmonson, Hart, and Barren Counties. Mammoth Cave is famous for having over 400 miles of surveyed passageways, along with stunning limestone strata, capped by sandstone.

There are multiple tours and adventures that one can take at Mammoth Cave – ones that are geared towards families, children, school groups, adults.. you name it! You can find more information about visiting here.

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While a day can easily be filled going from Abe to Cave, if you need more activities (or want some great food), head over and visit my friends in Hart County! In beautiful, nearby Horse Cave, Kentucky, one can have fabulous Amish Doughnuts from R&S Salvage Grocery and Bakery, explore Hidden River Cave, shop locally downtown, dine at 5 Broke Girls (get the Chicken Fried Chicken!), have a glass of sweet tea and a bologna sandwich at the WigWam General Store, visit the famous Dennison’s Roadside Market, pet a kangaroo at Kentucky Down Under Adventure Zoo, and grab a pizza at a local favorite, Turtlelini’s!

You can find more information on what to do, where to go, and where to eat in Hart County here.

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Needless to say, there’s a lot to do in this area of the state; if I were you, I’d book a hotel + get ready to make some great memories! Take my word, my Kentucky oath, for it – you won’t regret it.

If you need help planning your trip to Central Kentucky, to the Abe to Cave Trail, or to Hart County, let me know – I’d be happy to help!

As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,

JC

FTC: This is a commissioned post; however, as always, all opinions expressed are my own.

Panda Express - JCP Eats

A Quick and Delicious Meal In Louisville: Panda Express

Hey, y’all!

I spend the least amount of time in the kitchen during the summer months. With more hours of daylight, I want to be out and about with friends – enjoying the warmth on patios, sharing a meal with those that I love, getting some Vitamin D… living my best life, you know?

That’s why I was so excited when Panda Express reached out to me about their new dinner options. I knew that this would be the perfect place for a dinner outing with my group, as Panda Express has:

  1. A plethora of options, which ensures that all taste palates are pleased.
  2. An affordable price point, accommodating all budgets.
  3. New and exciting feature menu items!

Panda Express - JCP Eats

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You can locate your nearest Panda Express locations here; that said, here in Louisville, I visited the Westport Rd. location!

Westport & Indian Lake Panda Express:

10600 Westport Rd., Louisville, KY 40241

502-425-1678

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Upon walking into Panda Express, I was immediately intrigued by the new Sichuan Hot Chicken Strips. Yes, you read that correctly. A Southern classic with an Asian twist – and this southerner had to try it!

The Sichuan Hot Chicken Strips are all white meat, hand-tossed in a spicy Sichuan peppercorn sauce, and topped with a secret spice blend.

Panda Express - JCP EatsPanda Express - JCP EatsPanda Express - JCP EatsPanda Express - JCP EatsPanda Express - JCP Eats

After tasting, I wasn’t just intrigued. I was drooling. You can ask for it to be extra spicy, which I highly recommend. It was absolutely delicious and I’ve already returned for more (twice, actually). Be sure to get them while you can – they are only available for a limited time.

While I love trying the new items that come to Panda Express, I also have to have my tried-and-true classics. First and foremost? The Honey Walnut Shrimp, which are large, tempura-battered, wok-tossed in a honey sauce, and topped with walnuts. This is, and has always been, my favorite menu item.

Panda Express - JCP Eats

It’s also hard to go to Panda Express and not have their signature dish: The Original Orange Chicken® – crispy chicken that is wok-tossed in an orange sauce that is both sweet and a little spicy. With one bite, you’ll know why this is their signature. So. Good.

Also, out of curiosity, are you team Chow Mein or team Fried Rice? I’m #TeamChowMein, which features stir-fried wheat noodles, onions, celery, and cabbage. It’s the perfect side to accompany your Sichuan Hot Chicken, Honey Walnut Shrimp, and/or Original Orange Chicken®! Though, truth be told, I love both.

Panda Express - JCP Eats

I was also excited to note the Wok Smart offerings at Panda Express, which are perfect for diners that are trying to eat more healthily. The goal of Wok Smart dishes is to match big flavors with more protein and fewer calories. Iconic, right? Wok Smart dishes have the same Chinese-inspired flavors that you know and love from Panda Express, yet have at least 8g of protein and 300 calories or less — why choose between flavor and food that’s good for you if you don’t have to? Panda Express, as they say, has the “best of both woks”!

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Whether you are dining out with friends or with family, Panda Express is a fantastic gathering spot this summer. I know you’ll love the new offerings, just as I did – and they’ll keep you comin’ back for more.

Take my word for it — it’s my Kentucky oath!

Panda Express - JCP Eats

As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,

JC

FTC: This post was very kindly sponsored by Panda Express; however, as always, all opinions expressed are my own.

 

Saatva HD Mattress: The First Luxury Mattress Made For Bigger Bodies, Plus Size People, Big People

The Best Self Care Investment Of My Life: My New Saatva HD Mattress

Hey, y’all!

Self-care.

It’s a hot topic these days – and for good reason. I think that we – my generation – have realized that prioritizing self-care is of utmost importance.

Self-care is, at its core, my lifeline – and one that I have vowed to prioritize going forward. However, I have to share this with y’all:

The obtainment of self-care can be an obstacle-filled course for plus-size people.

There. I said it.

There are products, services, and initiatives that do not accommodate people of size.

Throughout my entire life, and maybe it’s due to being raised by educators, I have been told that an important part of self-care is to get adequate sleep. To rest the body is to care for the body; to recharge is to energize; to prioritize sleep is to prioritize health.

Saatva HD Mattress: The First Luxury Mattress Made For Bigger Bodies, Plus Size People, Big People

Though a simple notion from the onset, I have found accommodating my body for sleep to be one of the most difficult tasks. I have never had a new mattress, nor have I ever slept on one that accommodates my body weight. When Saatva reached out to me to try their new HD Mattress, I jumped at the opportunity.

And, to understate, y’all – it has changed my life.

Saatva HD Mattress: The First Luxury Mattress Made For Bigger Bodies, Plus Size People, Big People

The Saatva HD Mattress is the first luxury mattress designed exclusively for the bigger body. Why was this necessary? I think of it this way: I wear a 4XL. I purchase 4XL’s to accommodate my body, as a 2XL does not fit. Why should I then assume that a mattress, an investment that is used every single day, operates any differently?

Saatva HD Mattress: The First Luxury Mattress Made For Bigger Bodies, Plus Size People, Big People

My friends at Saatva designed this mattress specifically to accommodate people that weigh between 300-500 lbs. They did this by delivering comfort – luxury comfort – via a mattress with plush upper layers and a high-durability coil base.

A Tour of the Saatva HD Mattress:

mattressdiagram@1x.jpg

Photo via Saatva

While diagrams, design, and science are all important – and I don’t mean to undermine their significance – I want to tell all y’all about what this mattress has done in my life.

Waking up in pain? No more, my friends!

I know all of my plus-size readers can relate to this. When I had my previous mattress (which, embarrassingly enough, was older than I am), I constantly woke up in pain. My lower back, my neck, my sides. You name it. My old mattress simply could not support my body weight. Saatva’s patented Spinal Zone active wire adds support in the center third of the mattress, while the 5-zone Talalay latex offers maximum pressure-point relief. What does that mean? Well, the mattress supports, uplifts, and is – quite literally – designed for my body. And my body thanks it.

The mattress cools me off during the night.

I am hot-natured. Hot-blooded. Sweaty. You choose the wording of your choice. That said,  the only time of day that I cannot stand to be hot is when I’m trying to sleep. Saatva solved this issue with their HD Mattress, as they strategically layered breathable, organic cotton, 100% natural latex, and open coils to promote easy air flow for a cooler night’s sleep. It really does make all of the difference.

I have been sleeping longer, better, and deeper.

The only way that I can describe having a mattress made for your body is… pure bliss. I no longer wake up in the middle of the night to readjust my body, I don’t need to sit up and stretch due to bodily pains, and I wake up feeling rested, rejuvenated, and ready to tackle my day. This has had significant, noticeable impacts in both my daily and professional life. I’m happier and more productive, y’all!

Order/Delivery

You can easily order a Saatva mattress online. However, I know that an investment like a mattress is something that is scary for the average consumer to do over the Internet. Saatva recognizes that; as a company that has taken the extra effort to design a mattress with their customers in mind, that same service and care also transfers over into the purchasing process. That’s why they offer a 120-night trial. How fabulous is that? After purchasing there’s also a 20 year, non-prorated warranty.

They also provide 24/7 support – Sleep Guides, as they are appropriately named – to answer any and all questions that you have. That’s something that I very much value in a company.

The best part, however, was the white glove delivery & setup. As I live alone, there are tasks that are harder for me to complete; an example of this is moving large items, such as a mattress. There’s no worry in that realm here, y’all. A Saatva HD Mattress comes with the “Saatva Service Standard”: white glove delivery, in-home setup, and removal of your old mattress. Essentially: a concierge hand delivers the mattress to your room of choice, sets it up, and you don’t have to worry about disposing of your old mattress. The delivery team takes it away for free.

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Y’all know that I never recommend – whether it be a recipe, a restaurant, or a product/service – if I do not fully believe in what I’m talking about. Where I was raised, the family farm in Southern Kentucky, I was told that one’s word is one’s bond.

Saatva HD Mattress: The First Luxury Mattress Made For Bigger Bodies, Plus Size People, Big PeopleSaatva HD Mattress: The First Luxury Mattress Made For Bigger Bodies, Plus Size People, Big People

That said, I wholeheartedly, and without hesitation, recommend the Saatva HD Mattress. If you are a plus-size individual like myself, you shouldn’t want for a good night’s sleep. You deserve a good night’s sleep. And I can say – with full confidence – that a Saatva mattress can and will provide that for you.

Invest in your body, in yourself, in your health.

Self-care if worth it.

You’re worth it.

Saatva HD Mattress: The First Luxury Mattress Made For Bigger Bodies, Plus Size People, Big People

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As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,

JC

Thank you to Saatva for kindly sponsoring today’s post; while I was gifted the mattress for review, all opinions expressed are my own.

 

The Best Southern Chicken Salad Recipe - With Mayonnaise, Sour Cream, Grapes, and Celery

How To Make The Best Southern Chicken Salad

Hey, y’all!

There is no food that I love more than chicken salad. It is reminiscent of my childhood, of my youth, and while simple, it is immensely delicious. While there are many varieties that I love, I don’t think that a classic, southern chicken salad can be rivaled. It’s thick, flavorful, and should – in my opinion – have a grape in every bite.

This chicken salad recipe is perfect to be served at a party with artisanal crackers, makes the perfect sandwich, pairs fantastic with celery and other raw vegetables, yet is best served on a buttery croissant.

Warning: you’ll want more than one.

The Best Southern Chicken Salad Recipe - With Mayonnaise, Sour Cream, Grapes, and Celery

JC's Southern Chicken Salad

Ingredients:

1 Rotisserie Chicken (I use the white meat only. All you need to do is a rough chop, as it will be added to your stand mixer)

3 (or 4!) large stalks of celery, diced

3 c. purple seedless grapes, halved

1 1/8 c. mayonnaise (can add more for desired consistency)

1/2 c. sour cream

1.5 tbsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. onion powder

Kosher salt, to taste

Black pepper, to taste

Croissants, halved

Bibb lettuce, washed

Directions:

  1. Remove white meat from rotisserie chicken; chop roughly and add to the bowl of your stand mixer.
  2. Thoroughly wash grapes and celery; cut the grapes in half and dice the celery, adding both to the stand mixer bowl.
  3. Add mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper to the same bowl. Gently fold in all ingredients with a spatula.
  4. Mix on the lowest power setting until everything is evenly combined. Stop frequently to stir with your spatula, being careful to not over-mix. If the mixture needs more mayonnaise, salt, or pepper, add at your discretion.
  5. Slice croissants in half, add washed bibb lettuce, and add desired amount of chicken salad.
  6. Enjoy!

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The Best Southern Chicken Salad Recipe - With Mayonnaise, Sour Cream, Grapes, and Celery

I hope y’all enjoy this recipe – it’s one of my all-time favorites. It is only made better by placing the finished croissants on my custom “Hey, y’all!” wood serving tray/platter. It was kindly gifted to me by Bluegrass Tables, a local business to Central Kentucky. They make custom-made furniture, wood turning bowls, candleholders, and other small goods – and I can’t recommend them enough! Everyone that has seen the board that they sent me has complimented it; it’s the hit of the party!

Find Bluegrass Tables on Instagram here.

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As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living.

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,

JC

FTC: This is not a commissioned post; I did, however, receive the board from Bluegrass Tables as a gift. All opinions expressed are my own.

Louisville Burger Week 2019 presented by the Kentucky Beef Council

Louisville Burger Week: A Week to Remember

This post is a collaboration with Kentucky Beef Council on behalf of the Beef Checkoff. I received compensation, but all opinions are my own.

Hey, y’all!

Burger Week graced my beloved city, Louisville, and has now departed; however, the memories remain. Along with the 3-5 lbs I gained. But, I’m an optimist and choose to hone in on the positive. Ha!

Louisville Burger Week 2019 presented by the Kentucky Beef CouncilLouisville Burger Week 2019 presented by the Kentucky Beef CouncilLouisville Burger Week 2019 presented by the Kentucky Beef Council

As I’ve previously stated, I think Burger Week is the most iconic culinary week of the year in Kentucky. It brings in crowds that are unparalleled to restaurants; it encourages diners to eat local, support local, and keep their financial influence local. It is also a great way to support our local farmers, which is why I am proud to work with the sponsor of this event, the Kentucky Beef Council.

Kentucky beef just tastes a little better – don’t y’all think?

Now, to reminiscence: on the delicious, delicious – oh, did I say delicious? – burgers. Can I get an amen?

Brooke and Billy’s

751 Vine Street, Louisville, KY 40204

Bloomin’ Blue Burger: A 6oz. angus beef burger topped with carmelized onions, blue cheese, lettuce, and A-1 aioli.

Bubba’s 33

4631 Medical Plaza Way, Clarksville, Indiana 47129

Bubba’s Bacon Burger: Signature beef and bacon ground patty with Bubba Sauce, American cheese, Bubba’s smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, and onion.

Butchertown Social

1601 Story Ave, Louisville, KY 40206

Won’t You Brie My Date?: An angus beef patty, applewood-smoked bacon, melty brie, balsamic onion & date jam, cookie butter, mixed greens, on toasted brioche.

Corner

102 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202

Corner Steak & Cheeseburger: A beef patty topped with chopped roast beef, sautéed peppers, caramelized onions, provolone and Swiss cheese, house-made ranch dressing, and shredded lettuce.

Derby City Gaming

4520 Poplar Level Rd Louisville, KY 40214

A grilled-to-order CAB burger on a bed of spring mixed greens, sliced tomato, house-made, Asian inspired bourbon peach BBQ sauce, monterey jack cheese, caramelized balsamic red peppers & onions, crispy fried wonton strips, and grilled Georgia peaches.

Drake’s – Paddock Shops

3921 Summit Plaza Drive, Louisville, KY 40241

PB&J Bacon-Brie Burger: A patty with peanut butter, strawberry-bacon jam, and creamy brie cheese.

Drake’s – St. Matthews

3939 Shelbyville Road, Louisville, KY 40207

BBQ Cordon Bleu Burger: A patty with smoked ham, marbled jack and blue cheese, shredded lettuce, and bourbon bbq mayo.

Dundee Tavern

2224 Dundee Road, Louisville, KY 40205

DT’s Dundee Dip Pretzel Burger: In-house ground burger smothered with Dundee Dip (creamy pepper jack cheese, spinach, jalapeños, tomatoes, and red onions), topped with jalapeños, atop a fresh pretzel bun.

Fork & Barrel

2244 Frankfort Ave, Louisville, KY 40206

Blackhawk Burger: 8 oz. grilled black hawk burger, beer cheese, crispy shallots, and arugula on a pretzel bun.

Goodwood Brewing

636 East Main Street, Louisville, KY 40202

Smoked Cherry Bourbon Barrel Stout Burger: A house-seasoned ground beef patty smoked in Walnut Brown Ale with cherry aioli, spring mix, and blue cheese crumbles.

Griff’s

133 W Liberty St, Louisville, KY 40202

The Best Figgin’ Burger: 1/2 lb. house burger blend topped with fig jam, gorgonzola cheese, beer-braised onions, and arugula.

Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse

434 South 4th Street, Louisville, Kentucky 40202

Bacon Mac-N-Cheese Burger: Smoked bacon, crispy onions, six cheese mac-n-cheese, lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles, cheese sauce, and Donkey Sauce.

HopCat

1064 Bardstown Road, Louisville, Kentucky 40204

HopCat Burger: Two smashed patties, American cheese, Kitty Island sauce, diced red onions, shredded lettuce, and pickles on a brioche bun.

Khalil’s

10966 Dixie Hwy, Louisville, KY 40272

Touchdown Burger: 7 oz. hand-pattied burger, served on a pretzel bun with coleslaw, tomato, onion, pulled pork, onion rings, American cheese, and topped with bbq sauce.

Macaron Bar

707 E Market St, Louisville, KY 40202

Burger Macaron: Two almond meringue cookies with sesame seeds, a dark chocolate ganache ‘burger,’ topped with ‘cheese and lettuce’ made from white chocolate.

Mark’s Feed Store

11422 Shelbyville Road Louisville, KY 40509; 10316 Dixie Hwy, Louisville, KY 40272; 3827 Charlestown Road, New Albany, IN 47150; 6501 Bardstown Road, Louisville, KY 40291; 1514 Bardstown Road, Louisville, KY 40205

Mark’s BBQ Feed Stack: A juicy 8 oz. burger basted with Mark’s Red Sauce topped with American cheese, onion straws, and fried pickles with a drizzle of Mark’s white BBQ sauce.

Molly Malone’s

3900 Shelbyville Rd, Louisville, KY 40207

Molly’s Burger: A burger topped with homemade beer cheese, lettuce, tomato, and onion.

Napa River Grill

1211 Herr Lane, Louisville, KY 40222

Double Bacon Cheeseburger: Cheddar, Comeback Sauce, lettuce, Pops Pickles, and a Benne Seed Bun.

O’Shea’s

956 Baxter Ave, Louisville, KY 40204

O’Shea’s Classic: A burger dressed with lettuce, tomato, onion and O’Shea’s sauce on a toasted Brioche bun.

Porch Kitchen & Bar

280 W. Jefferson St, Louisville, KY 40202

Porch Burger: 1/2 lb. brisket blend burger, lettuce, onion, pickles, American cheese, topped with secret sauce.

STOUT

1604 Bardstown Rd, Louisville, KY 40205

Stout Burger: Locally-sourced patty of brisket/chuck blend topped with ripe avocado, cumin, red onion, diced tomato, cilantro lime aioli, & queso fresco on a golden brioche bun.

Sullivan’s Taphouse

3929 Shelbyville Rd, Louisville, KY 40207

El Chapo Burger: House-made chorizo patty, pepper jack cheese, shredded lettuce, chili cheese Fritos, and siracha ranch.

The Hub

2235 Frankfort Avenue, Louisville, Kentucky 40206

The Big Cheese: A house-blended tenderloin patty, freshly fried tostadas, pico de gallo, fire-roasted jalapeños, smoked applewood bacon, and charred lettuce, all topped with our house-made queso.

The Sports & Social Club

427 South 4th Street, Louisville, KY 40202

8 oz. Burger, cheddar cheese, American cheese, caramelized onions, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and onion.

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What was your favorite burger of the week? Did you try any new restaurants? That, to me, is the best part of this entire experience!

Remember: eat local, support local, and choose KY beef.

Beef.. it’s what’s for dinner, y’all.

As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,

JC

 

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Dining Around Lake Cumberland: A Lake Goer’s Guide to Russell County

Hey, y’all!

Heading to beautiful Lake Cumberland? If you aren’t, take my word for it: you should be! Lake Cumberland is a cultural oasis for our Commonwealth and the millions of visitors that it has attracted to the South-Central Kentucky region. Lake Cumberland provides visitors with water sports a’plenty, gorgeous docks and marinas, and a community unlike any other in the region. Oh, and some delicious food + libations!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Join me in celebrating the delicious bites and sips along the shoreline of the Houseboat Capital of the World! Warning: come hungry, bring sunscreen, and be prepared to make lifelong memories!

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Did you know that the shoreline of Lake Cumberland is 1,255 miles, which is longer than the contiguous shoreline of Florida? It also just falls short of matching the total Pacific coastline of the United States (California, Oregon, Washington).  Let that sink in for a minute, y’all! As for water capacity, it is the 9th largest reservoir in the United States!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Side note: I’m not going to downplay my excitement for this post, yet I promise to only get somewhat sentimental — today’s post features the eateries on Lake Cumberland in Russell County. Russell County, specifically Jamestown, is where I am from, y’all. I grew up on the family farm that was homesteaded in 1798, located in what is now the Esto Community of Jamestown. Russell County was officially founded in 1825; thus, it’s fair to say that my roots run pretty deep in this community.

This is my first time getting to work here asJCP Eats in a professional capacity. This opportunity means a lot to me – and I owe it all to you, my dear readers.

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A Culinary Tour of Russell County via Lake Cumberland

The Tiki Bar & Grill

I started my day at the Tiki Bar & Grill, which is located at the State Dock Marina.  Upon grabbing a chair at the Tiki Bar, and after hearing a Jimmy Buffett tune, you’ll forget about all of your worries and be thankful for the forthcoming time that you will have on Lake Cumberland.

On the water, the perfect meal starts with a “boat drink”, as we Parrotheads call them, right? With plenty of beers and a wide-ranging menu, there’s a libation to please all palates. As for me, I started with rum-based cocktails – one with blue curacao and one with pineapple juice!

The fun didn’t end there, though. Don’t miss out on the fried fish, as it was one of my favorite bites on Lake Cumberland. Perfectly breaded, crunchy, and delicious. It was finger lickin’ good.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

The calamari was also a favorite of mine – the portion size was incredible!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

As for small bites + bar bites, I also tried the quesadilla, pulled pork sliders, chicken wings, fries, cole slaw, and pretzel + beer cheese.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Just take my word for it: you can’t go wrong. Especially if you end your meal in an authentic Kentucky fashion: with bourbon pecan pie + vanilla ice cream!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Fishtales

Fishtales is, without hesitation, my favorite place on Lake Cumberland. The food is absolutely incredible! Upon boating up to the banks of Wolf Creek Marina and landing at Fishtales, one could easily think that they are in the Florida Keys. I’ve made my rounds around Kentucky, as y’all know – and I truly believe that there isn’t any place quite like Fishtales in our Commonwealth.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Start your meal with the mahi mahi bites, a healthier option that features perfectly-grilled fish in bite-size form. This is the perfect dish to share (or order your own, because, well, you’ll want it).

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

The fish tacos feature the same mahi mahi, so if tacos are more your speed, by all means – order these! So good, y’all.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Oh, and crab cakes! Get the crab cakes. Just trust me.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

If you would like another drink, look no further than “The Lake Cumberland” – a drink that was born at Wolf Creek Marina. I was so excited to be among the first to try it!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Inspired by the gorgeous colors of the lake – blue and green – this cocktail is one that you won’t be able to get enough of. It was delicious!

Lake Cumberland Marina

Formerly known as Alligator II, Lake Cumberland Marina really impressed me. It had been several years since I had been on-site – and let me tell you: there have been so many updates! It was unrecognizable in the best way possible.

Lake Cumberland Marina is fixated in one of the best spots for boating and fishing in the Commonwealth. There’s also a nearby beach area, which is perfect for a day of relaxation. Apart from boat rentals, Lake Cumberland Marina has launched two new options: Floating Cabins and Harbor Cottages! This was my first time seeing either – and to say that I was impressed was an understatement. I left wanting one — an on-water office is sounding pretty good at the moment!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

While at Lake Cumberland Marina, don’t miss out on a delicious meal — and in my opinion, the Philly Cheesesteak was a perfect mid-day treat! They use the same meat in their quesadillas, too. Yum!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

The Cumberland Tap

I have so many childhood memories at Jamestown Marina (now known as Safe Harbor Jamestown Resort & Marina). Being a Jamestown boy, this is the part of the lake that I consider to be “mine” – however, I’m not alone in this sentiment. One of the busiest parts of Lake Cumberland, upon visiting the marina, you’ll be charmed, too.

The Cumberland Tap is the best-stocked bar on Lake Cumberland. This is not your typical drinking experience – they have everything from speciality cocktails to locally-sourced beers. I think that is what impressed me most — the devotion to our alcohol industry here in Kentucky behind the bar. From Jarfly in nearby Somerset to Country Boy & West Sixth in Lexington, one is sure to have a taste of the Commonwealth upon walking in at the Cumberland Tap.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

My favorite drink of the day was the Q-Cumberland Mojito, which featured Don Q Rum, fresh mint, fresh cucumber, simple syrup, and a splash of Sprite.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

I also enjoyed the Jam Marina Margarita, which featured Cuervo Traditional 1800 Silver Tequila, Cointreau, fresh lime + lemon juice, simple syrup, and a splash of orange juice. Oh, and it’s served with a shot of Grand Marnier on the side. Yes, you read that correctly. It made all of the difference.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

Apart from drinks, the Cumberland Tap is also known for live music + their bar bites. Their oversized, salted, fluffy pretzel is what they are known for – and it’s what dreams are made of. That is if you have carbohydrate-filled dreams (am I alone in this?). The pretzel was served with homemade beer cheese, which featured Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Beer. A little extra touch of Kentucky goes a long way in my book.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

The Mariner’s Cafe

Located next-door to the Cumberland Tap is the Mariner’s Cafe, which is a staple on Lake Cumberland. It’s truly a one-stop shop!

As for the menu at the Mariner’s Cafe, there are classics – burgers and other sandwiches perfect for a boater’s appetite – and special dishes, such as salmon + delicious southern sides.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

There are also plenty of appetizers to share with your crew + delicious salads if you are trying to live on the lighter side of life.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

However, the highlight was an off-menu dessert concoction that I am so proud to say will be available to y’all upon request: Loaded Funnel Cake Fries. No, I’m not kidding. Funnel Cake Fries, topped with cherry pie filling and whipped cream. Sinful? Potentially. Plate scrapin’ good? Absolutely.

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

_____________________________

Adventure awaits in beautiful Russell County, Kentucky – especially on Lake Cumberland. I do hope that you’ll come hungry, as there are many delicious eateries located on the banks of Kentucky’s shining gem!

Dining on Lake Cumberland - Russell County

As I am from the area, if you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me. I’d be happy to help you in planning a trip to God’s Country – my home!

Thank y’all for making this post possible. I’ll always remember this one.

As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,

JC

FTC: This post is sponsored by Lake Cumberland Tourist Commission (Russell County, KY); all opinions expressed, as always, are my own.

 

 

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