Tastes and bites of Lexington, Kentucky
PHOTO: Yeast donut with cream cheese filling, caramel topping and a candied bacon on top at Magee's Bakery (c) Sery Kim
Recently I had a chance to taste, literally, a sliver of Americana by venturing to Lexington, Kentucky. The Bluegrass Region of Kentucky is better known for its amazing horses, so much so it is called the "Horse Capital of the World," but in my opinion I think it is worth visiting Lexington for food itself. If you only have one day to taste, drink and eat your way through Lexington, here is my ideal food day.
Start any food pilgrimage to Lexington by stopping by Magee's Bakery for breakfast. They have some incredible baked goods, as well as perfectly acceptable coffee. I ordered not only the Biscuits and Gravy for breakfast, scrumptious and tremendously fluffy, but also the chocolate donut and the tasty treat pictured above. The "LongJohn" with bacon was likely the best donut I have ever had in my life, and I took several away with me.
Then take a stroll around the super cute boutiques near Magee's Bakery for prime, affordable shopping or ride the Lexington Blue Line, looping every 21 minutes, seven days a week from the heart of downtown Lexington.
PHOTO: Vanilla Old Fashioned at Dudley's on Short (c) Sery Kim
Cool down from the summer heat by getting a Bourbon based drink. After all, Kentucky is also famous for their Bourbon. The most famous distillery is Woodford Reserved Distillery, my Bourbon of choice for my drink of choice (the Old Fashioned), just outside of Lexington in Versailles, KY. If you don't have a rental car don't worry about the costs of getting to any of these distilleries as everything seems to be "about 10 minutes" from everything else. Other great options include Buffalo Trace Distillery, Castle & Key Distillery, Four Roses Distillery and Wild Turkey Distillery. Also craft distilleries exist: Barrel House, Bluegrass, Hartfield & Co., Town Branch and Wilderness Trail.
PHOTO: My Red State BBQ lunch (c) Sery Kim
Then indulge in some tasty BBQ. I tried a food truck sent out by Red State BBQ and for ten dollars I had brilliant mac'n'cheese, as well as a half-pork and half-short rib sandwich. The meat, even for a food truck, was ideally cooked and so soft I barely had to touch it with a fork before it pulled away. Add to this the panoply of sauces Red State BBQ has to offer and I really did great for lunch.
PHOTO: Grilled Peaches at Dudley's On Short (c) Sery Kim
For dinner, I went back to Dudley's on Short for an incredibly fresh meal on the outdoor rooftop patio. Grilled peaches with proscuitto was a great blend of salty and sweet with the toasted bread providing some excellent texture. The main course of Kentucky Chicken could not have been better cooked but the best thing anyone ate was the Buttermilk Fried Chicken Skin. Incredibly succulent.
PHOTO: The Kentucky Chicken at Dudley's on Short (c) Sery Kim
Finally close out your food adventures in Lexington with a stop at Crank and Boom ice cream shop. Again, I hate to say that this was the best thing I had all year, but it really was the best ice cream I had all year -- not including the gelato from Italy naturally. The Salted Caramel Brownie was overwhelming with its sweet, salty, crunchy blend, I come back the very next day for another one. Simply spectacular in every way.
PHOTO: Salted Caramel Sundae at Crank and Broom (c) Sery Kim
I really did have a great few days in Lexington, tasting a lot of different things, but if I ever go back I know 100% this is the exact food itinerary I would keep!
Thank you VisitLEX for all your help in steering me in the right direction!!! Safe travels!!