What’s not to love?!
A favorite spot, and one we joyfully hit each time, is The Hitching Post and Old Country Store in Aurora. It has been a favorite destination for years – even before the new owners. However, with the re-opening of the wonderful old country store, this is a not-to-be-missed step back in time. An extra treat is the hot dot vendor in the front parking lot. These fresh and unique Chicago-style hot dogs make you think you’re in Heaven while you’re eating them – then you spend all day thinking about them… wanting to go back! They’re THAT good.
- High quality hot dogs (too good to even be called hot dogs actually)
- High quality buns (too good to be called buns)
- Extremely friendly owners (artisans of the American classic!)
The Hitching Post has been a favorite with tourists, frequent quests, and Kentucky locals since 1941. It’s a beautiful Kentucky Lake tradition, you simply can’t have one without the other. Many years have passed and millions of feet have walked through the front doors but it’s still THE best place for Kentucky souvenirs, novelties, Kentucky food specialties, toys, T-Shirts, jewelry, crafts, fudge, honey, jams, jellies, bar-b-que sauces, soap, cookbooks, hats, home decor, garden decor, old fashioned candy, and on and on and on. The past few Christmases I’ve gotten a few wonderful, completely unexpected and original gifts for family members at The Hitching Post.
Of course, I also buy just-because treats for my daughters frequently – something they absolutely love.
My favorite section of The Hitching Post (besides the front counter where I could stay and visit with the owner and workers for days) is the Kentucky food specialties wall.
I think we’ve tried just about all of the sauces, jams, and jellies and have loved each greatly. The unique flavors positively cannot be found in stores and they take homemade buttermilk biscuits and cornbread to a whole new level.
A favorite appetizer in our home is simple and involves one of these jellies. I place a block of cream cheese on a platter and smother it with Red Pepper Jelly (the kind from The Hitching Post tastes just like the Red Pepper Jelly my mom used to make up and give as gifts every Christmas). I serve it with Ritz crackers and watch as it magically disappears.
On this particular trip, we got the excellent Yoder’s Homestyle Blueberry Jam – from Crab Orchard, Kentucky. It has an appointment with buttermilk biscuits.
You can find some of their food items on The Hitching Post’s website, including Pappy’s outstanding Bar-b-que sauce. Pappy can dish it out, as hot as you want it! Click HERE to browse the selection of Pappy’s BBQ sauces as well as an EXCELLENT Hot & Spicy Mustard that was made to be served with pretzel sticks. It makes an ideal game-day snack.
After eating our amazing hot dogs and drinking our cans of soda (normally my husband drinks ice cold sarsaparilla from inside The Hitching Post but he branched out today), we sat on the front porch and played a classic “boxing” game my husband remembered from his childhood. The boxers looked like crosses between Howie Long and Transformers. My Howie Transformer cleaned my husband’s clock!
You can also play checkers on the big, shady, beautiful front porch, or just sit, relax and take in the ambiance – which is golden by the way.
You’ll want to stroll around the property – which is such a delicious step-back-in-time. It’s also a photographer’s dream come true! There’s an authentic moonshine still, antique buggies, old blacksmith and wagon shop, antiques, and a life-size paper mache horse that has long been a favorite site for photographs. He’s incredibly life-like and has, literally, stood the test of time.
The Country Store
A new favorite spot is the renovated, overhauled Country Store. It blows my mind straight out of my head. It’s a store, make no mistake about it, and antique lovers will get weak in the knees. However, it’s like an adorable, charming, amazing museum – again, a step back in time, to a simpler time.
- Before grocery carts
- Before intercoms
- Before dvds
- Before technology took over the world
You walk in and you’re instantly transported back to “the good old days.” The beauty is, you can take some of the good old days home with you. My husband and I collect old books. I specialize in old cookbooks (many of you know I have a food blog and cooking and recipes are an obsession with me). I also LOVE old antique kitchen gadgets, dishes, and cooking tools. I’m just in Paradise in the Country Store!
Another obsession of mine is coffee. How I keep from smelling like coffee is beyond me (I guess my perfume covers it up). My eyes popped out of my head and my pulse began to race when I saw their coffee beans near the front. They even have a Hitching Post Blend. I love it!
Su (the wonderfully friendly owner) has put an unbelievable amount of time, money and effort (and even more love) into renovating The Old Country Store. Honestly, it’s mind-boggling. If you could see BEFORE and AFTER pictures, you’d wonder where this woman hides her Wonder Woman cape. I stopped looking for it after a few visits, I figure if she wants her cape to be found, it’ll be found.
You know me well enough to know that I get around my beloved Kentucky. My daughter and I were looking through Kentucky brochures a few days ago, because she and her boyfriend were wanting to see something new, and I was amazed at the number of places she and I had already seen. She kept saying, “We’ve been there, but he hasn’t..” Something else struck me – why would anyone ever leave Kentucky for a vacation?!?!
Before I climb up on my stump and begin preaching about Kentucky, let me just say, I’ve seen a lot of Kentucky! I can honestly say that, not counting home (of course), there’s no place I’d rather be than in Aurora, Kentucky enjoying a step back in time at The Hitching Post & Old Country Store. There’s no place quite like it and I know you’ll feel it’s magic just as surely as we do.
More of The Hitching Post on Genuine Kentucky:
- Step Back in Time at The Hitching Post and Country Store in Aurora, Ky.
- Handsome Gentleman Hanging Out in the Hitching Post
- Homemade Fudge at The Hitching Post!
- Endless Kentucky Nostalgia at The Hitching Post in Aurora, Kentucky
- Classic Sign on The Hitching Post’s Porch!
- Delicious Kentucky Food at The Hitching Post
- Hitching Post and Old Country Store: Antique Lover’s Paradise
- The All American Showdown and Vintage Sodas at The Hitching Post!
- The Hitching Post & Old Country Store Pictures
The Hitching Post & Old Country Store
16474 US Hwy 68 East
Aurora, Kentucky 42028
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Summer hours (Memorial day – Labor day):
Tuesday – Saturday 9:00 – 6:00
Sunday 10:00 – 4:00
Find more pictures of The Hitching Post & Old Country Store in our Aurora, Kentucky Photo Album