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Berea KY

The Historic Boone Tavern Hotel & Restaurant

Hey, y’all!

During my recent trip to Berea, Kentucky, I was honored to be hosted by the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant!


I love the history of the property. To quote, “A historic Berea hotel, Boone Tavern was built in 1909 at the suggestion of Nellie Frost, the wife of the College president, William G. Frost. As the reputation of Berea College grew, so did the number of guests that Mrs. Frost received, reaching a total of 300 guests in one summer. Boone Tavern Hotel & Restaurant– named for Appalachian hero Daniel Boone – has been hosting visitors of Berea, Kentucky, ever since, including the Dalai Lama, Henry Ford, President and Mrs. Calvin Coolidge, Eleanor Roosevelt, Maya Angelou, and Robert Frost.

Construction of Boone Tavern began in 1909 based on designs by the New York architectural firm of Cady & See at a cost of $20,000. The building, made of bricks manufactured by students in the College’s brickyard, was constructed by the College’s Woodwork Department. The “Tavern” portion of the name is derived from the historic definition that refers to a public inn for travelers rather than the modern definition related to the sale of alcohol.

Built at a prominent location on the College Square in the heart of Berea where the old Dixie Highway intersected with the campus, Boone Tavern is one of the most famous Kentucky hotels.”


With 63 guest rooms, guests have ample options to stay at a property chock-full of history. Boone Tavern is a member of the Historic Hotels of America; furthermore, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Upon checking in, I learned that I was honored as the Guest of the Day. What a surprise!



The decor of the hotel is just stunning. Elegant, enduring, and southern to the greatest extent of the word.


When you stay at a property like Boone Tavern, you realize that all details – even the small ones – are thought about. One of my favorite parts of the experience is that you use an actual key to enter your room. However small, I love the touch; traditional room keys trump swipe/scan room keys.


My room was gorgeous. Large and comfortable – it felt like home. Apart from that, the bathroom was grandiose. Oversized and complete with an amazing jacuzzi — I certainly made use of the amenities!



If that isn’t enough to incentivize you to plan a trip to Berea (though I know it is), let’s talk about the amazing restaurant located in Boone Tavern. Let me tell you — this restaurant is a Kentucky diamond. It’s a rite of passage to dine here. It’s timeless, classic, and – if I do say so myself – downright delicious.

The food:


Fried deviled eggs – yes, you read that correctly. Divine.


A magnificent fried green tomato salad!


The highlight of my meal: local tomatoes, sweet peaches, and the most magical, creamy ricotta. Delicious!


The bass was delicious — a Kentucky classic! Plus, it was plated beautifully!


A classic at the restaurant: Chicken Flakes In a Bird’s Nest.


And, of course, bread pudding!

Though alcohol is served in the restaurant, the perfect way to end the evening is to visit the bar right next to the dining room. I met some great people and enjoyed a delicious gin martini (or two). It was a perfect ending to a perfect stay.


I want to sincerely thank Berea Tourism and the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant for sponsoring this stay. It was one for the books – and one that I will be talking about for a long while!


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

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,


FTC: This is a commissioned post. All opinions, however, are my own.



Happy Birthday, Kentucky!

Y’all — I’m a day late to the party. As a ride-or-die, through-and-through Kentuckian, I should be ashamed of myself. However, being fashionably late is excusable on occasion, correct?

Yesterday was Kentucky’s 226th birthday. My dear Commonwealth, you’re not as old as Methuselah – but, you’re gettin’ on up there! But, like fine wine, you get better with age.

What is Kentucky to me?

Kentucky is a heritage. It’s Phelps Acres Farm, the land my family homesteaded in 1798 – the very land that I grew up on. It’s people – God fearin’, hard workin’, genuinely good folk. It’s strong bourbon, bluegrass, the tulip poplar. It’s cardinals (not wildcats, ya know), the sun shinin’ bright. It’s the sweetest of tea, the farmhouse meals that rival a Michelin star restaurant. It’s the hills, the mountains, the lakes, the rivers, the creeks.


It’s my Commonwealth — the only place that I ever want to call home.

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

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,


FTC: I was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own.

Commonwealth Collaborations | Native Bagel Company (Berea)

Let’s talk bagels, y’all – one of my favorite foods.

It is a privilege to be partnering up with my friends at Native Bagel Company today – a family-owned bagel, coffee, and sandwich shop located in Berea, Kentucky. The owners are a delight – genuine individuals that care about their product and their community. That’s what makes Kentucky so special.

All of their offerings are delicious and this is a place that you mustn’t miss. Doing so should be illegal.

They make their bagels like the New Yorkers do (which, as we all know, is the best method) – an 18 hour fermentation process to draw out maximum flavor. What makes Native Bagel Company special is that they add a Kentucky touch to the process. The secret? They boil the bagels in water infused with a touch of sorghum syrup. That makes this Southern Kentuckian want to hoot and holler! Yee-haw!

I want to make one thing clear: the country ham bagel panini is one of the most delicious things that I have eaten this year. It features Kentucky country ham, homemade jalapeño cream cheese, and blackberry jam. It mixes hip, stylistic flavor matching with the Appalachian cuisine that I love, adore, and was raised on — and I’m here for it. Fabulous.


The country ham bagel panini. I’m drooling, y’all.


I also loved this cinnamon raisin bagel with honey rosemary cream cheese (my favorite of the spreads made in-house).

Learn more about Native Bagel Company on their website, Instagram, and Facebook. They are located at 105 Boone Street in Berea, Kentucky. Their hours are M-F 7am-2pm, Saturdays 8 am-2pm. Tell them that JCP Eats sent you their way!

My best,


* FTC: This is not a sponsored post; all opinions are my own.


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