My husband and I have been making the rounds, visiting different Kentucky State Parks and their restaurants. The ones we’ve been to have featured basically the same menu – but our experiences have been greatly varied.
Last night, we ate at the Aurora Landing Restaurant in Kenlake Lodge. It was our first time eating at Kenlake Lodge, but it certainly won’t be our last. Our wonderful server (Renai) and extremely warm hostess (Kathy) were, by far, the friendliest we’ve encountered at any state park. Ever. Each lady seemed to genuinely love her job and the resort she worked for. Furthermore, they treated us the way I would treat company that visited my home. Renai (beautiful name, right?) never allowed our tea to anywhere near half empty and even offered to give us more ice. This tea, by the way, was amongst the best I’ve ever gotten out. When we left, she asked if we wanted some tea for the road, in a “to go” cup. I’ve never experienced that outside of an Applebee’s. How’s that for service?!
My husband and I never tell a hostess, server, or any worker that we publish a website or that I write reviews. I want to see how workers generally are – for better or worse…. when they don’t know anyone’s planning to write about them! Like I said, for better or worse, you see how people generally are and you get an idea for the way a restaurant is managed.
Words just can’t express how amazing and friendly these ladies were. I will say this, as a proud Kentuckian, I wish each of our state parks were filled with workers JUST like these two ladies. Can you imagine the wonderful impression the rest of the world would get of Kentuckian hospitality and warmth?
Given the lovely dispositions of the workers, I was SO hoping that the food would measure up and be deserving of their presence. In another first from any of the State Park restaurants we’ve visited, Renai brought delicious rolls and butter to our table to enjoy while we waited for our meals. These rolls were beyond spectacular – they had a light sprinkling of herbs on top and, frankly, tasted unlike any bread I’ve ever had. I could have eaten 100.
I ordered chicken breast with onions and mushrooms, a baked potato, and pinto beans. I’d never tried the chicken before, because I’m such a catfish addict that I usually go that fishy route. I certainly picked the right time to venture out!
The chicken, mushrooms, and onions were so amazing that my mouth is watering from the memories. The chicken had a delicious grilled, mesquite flavor and was cooked perfectly. It honestly couldn’t have been any better and the mushrooms and onions were just as perfect – not overdone, not underdone. Perfectly perfect and delicious beyond belief.
For dessert, we got the Kenlake Brownie with Ice Cream, cherries, and whipped topping. Oh, sweet goodness, it was amazing! I’m a total chocoholic, so I know my chocolate stuff – this dessert was spectacular.
We were delighted to discover that the people in the kitchen were as wonderfully skilled as those in the dining room. The Kentucky State Park system can certainly be proud of beautiful Kenlake State Park and, even more so, of the workers in its restaurant.
The next time you visit Land Between the Lakes, I promise you that you won’t find a better place to eat than the lovely restaurant at Kenlake Lodge. With the delicious food, friendly workers, and gorgeous view of the flower gardens and lake – you might not want to leave.