Fried Catfish at the Feed Mill in Morganfield – Perfection
When it comes to Kentucky Restaurant Reviews, I try hard (as in very hard) not to make any GRAND, swooping statements. You know, statements like, “So and So has the best onion rings in Kentucky” or “Such and Such has the juiciest chicken in the state…”
I TRY to avoid these grandiose statements for several reasons:
- How in the heck would I know? I haven’t been to every restaurant in the state, nor will I ever achieve such a lofty goal.
- The food in question may just seem like it’s the best because it’s within reach.
- Someone might go and make a clown out of me. I went large and grand once in the name of mouth-watering onion rings in a particular restaurant near Kentucky Lake. I declared that these were the best onion rings in Kentucky. In my defense, at that time they probably were. BUT (big but) upon a recent trip, it was obvious the onion rings were the victim of a “make under” and… well.. they aren’t even the best onion rings in the town now, let alone the whole state. If anyone reads that now and orders the onion rings, my reputation is shot. I think I’ll go back and edit a little – instead of saying they’re the best onion rings in the state, I’ll say they’re the best onion rings in the room.
So, as you can see, going grand can lead to more heartache than you’ll find on a Taylor Swift album.
But, let’s just say I did decide to throw caution to the wind and go grand again. Let’s say I decided to swoop right in with some of my world-famous declarations. After a recent trip to a favorite restaurant (The Feed Mill in Morganfield), I’m afraid I’m going to have to do just that.
As a popular commercial says, Here we go!
- The Feed Mill in Morganfield has some of the best catfish in the world.
- The Feed Mill has the best baked beans ever served in a restaurant.
- The Feed Mill has the best fried chicken in Kentucky…. sorry, Colonel.
- The Feed Mill has the best dessert in the state (Bread Pudding… trust me…. honestly, trust me.)
- The Feed Mill proves why coleslaw was ever invented in the first place.
- The Feed Mill’s onion rings are in the top two in the state.
- The Feed Mill’s Po’ Boys are the best ever made.
- The whimsical and adorable restaurant is unlike any other.
- They are the single most consistent restaurant I’ve ever been in – they are consistently perfect each and every time. Bad night? They never heard of the concept.
Swoop! There it is!
This restaurant fascinates me. It’s in Morganfield, for one thing. You’d expect to find food this delicious in a larger town like Louisville, Lexington, Owensboro, Bowling Green… heck even Madisonville (the charming little where I was born and raised).
But quiet, charming little Morganfield??????? This pretty little town seems more like a rural farm community than the spot for one of the best restaurants in Kentucky.
Yet here they are – serving up food so amazing you have to pick your jaw up off the floor to finish eating. Honestly, food has no right to be this good.
The only thing on their menu that I don’t do seat dances for are their hush puppies. They’re downright cute, I’ll give them that – but (for my own personal taste) they just don’t taste like I expect hush puppies to taste. They’re closer to yellow cake. I don’t even take a polite bite out of them anymore. I just roll them across the table to my husband and dive head first into my catfish. It’s the main attraction anyway. (*see the EDIT at the end of the review)
Mind you , they aren’t bad hush puppies – they’re just not what I think of when I think of hush puppies.
Back to what the Feed Mill does as well as anyone (and better than most), which is everything else. I love the restaurant, itself. It’s fun, quirky (click the link for a picture of the day to see this quirkiness in action), comfortable, and has an unexpected Louisiana Bayou decor. Each time we go I see something different that catches my eye. On our most recent trip, we were seated in a part of the restaurant we’d never been in before – so it was a real feast for the eyes. The lively, beautiful Mardi Gras decorations and art prints were really something else – I couldn’t take my eyes off of them.
Until my catfish arrived, that is.
As you know, if you read my restaurant reviews regularly, catfish is an obsession with me. I eat so much catfish it’s a wonder I don’t have whiskers. I could eat it 5 times a week and feel bitter about the two other days.
Suffice to say, I know my catfish and I have eaten it everywhere known to man.
Each time I enjoy catfish around Kentucky, I sort of mentally judge it against my gold standard. That gold standard is the Feed Mill’s catfish. More times than not, other catfish does not measure up to The Feed Mill’s. I’ve had a few times when, at the time, I thought it did – only to return to The Feed Mill and be like, “Um… not quite. Good try boys and girls.”
I have also had The Feed Mill’s fried chicken which is, itself, another gold standard to measure everyone else’s chicken by. The Feed Mill’s fried chicken is crunchy on the outside, juicy on the inside, and uncommonly flavorful throughout. It’s never greasy, never overdone, and never underdone. It is simply perfect each and every time.
The Feed Mill’s Sides and Dessert
As I grandly said earlier, The Feed Mill’s baked beans are some of the best in the state. Of course, that’s just my own personal opinion, but since I’m always right, it’s the only one we need. Their green beans are also excellent – as good as any green beans you’ll ever eat. If it weren’t for the great coleslaw at The Miller House in Owensboro, and the vinegar coleslaw at the Willow Pond Restaurants at Kentucky Lake, I’d give The Feed Mill’s coleslaw the title of Best in Kentucky. As it is, it’s a four way tie. Believe me, each restaurant is AMAZING and can be flattered by the company it’s keeping in the battle of the coleslaws.
I also love The Feed Mill’s mashed potatoes. You can order them “loaded,” one of my husband’s favorite approaches. However, it’s so hard to find really good (as in real) mashed potatoes in restaurants, so I usually order them plain because I prefer to just taste the potatoes and only the potatoes. Excellence in every bite.
The onion rings are extraordinary. Like catfish, onion rings are another obsession of mine and they’re something I tend to order everywhere we go. The Feed Mill’s are fantastic, but they’d be even better with really good ketchup. I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before a couple or a million times, but the ketchup at The Feed Mill is baaaaad. The only thing in the entire place that is, mind you, but there you have it.
My husband usually gets something different each time we go because everything is so darn amazing. This time he got the Oyster Po’ Boy. It comes with chips, but he ordered baked beans instead. Good call.
One of the best desserts in the entire state is found at The Feed Mill. Their bread pudding isn’t just a dessert, it’s an experience. The secret is all in the sweet, delectable, your-eyes-will-roll-back-in-you-head sauce served over the bread pudding. Want proof of their bread pudding’s magic powers?
There are no pictures of this dessert on Genuine Kentucky. Me… the gal who takes pictures of everything (even ketchup bottles…. good ketchup bottles, that is)… I have never photographed the bread pudding at The Feed Mill because of the power it has over me. When it arrives, all I can do is grab a spoon and throw myself at its mercy. I never even think of the camera until I’m a good 3 bites into Heaven.
I’m the biggest chocoholic in the world (ironically I just took a chocolate cake out of the oven and am about to whip up some chocolate frosting), and normally if a dessert doesn’t have chocolate in the title, I snicker at it. Unless it’s cheesecake, that is…. I’m all about cheesecake. The Feed Mill’s bread pudding is so ridiculously fantastic and lip smacking delicious it can fill in for chocolate any time it wants to.
If your mouth isn’t watering right now, you should check your pulse.
EDIT: I’ve beaten the system, with the help of a sweet server. I now simply ask to replace the hush puppies with Feed Mill’s Heavenly rolls. They’re the type of rolls you feel the need to smell before you eat them – as in you smell them several times. I love these divine, wonderful yeast-licious rolls!