Smoothing Out the Bump on the Road to Lexington

Lexington has a distinct European feel.

Margie attacks her seafood salad at the Sheridan Livery Inn.

Margie and I drove up to Lexington yesterday to see Washington & Lee’s football team play Sewanee and to eat lunch at the Red Hen Restaurant, but there was a glitch. W&L was playing Sewanee in Tennessee and the Red Hen isn’t open for lunch.

So we improvised.

This is, of course, a perfect example of my skill at road-trip planning (I knew W&L was playing Sewanee and I knew the Red Hen–made popular when it asked presidential spokeswoman Sara Sanders to leave a couple of months ago–is a restaurant).

Ah, but the details.

One other detail I didn’t know was that the Red Hen is pretty expensive: appetizers for $9-$12 and entres from $22-$27 (shrimp and grits, for example, is $24).

While looking for an alternative restaurant, we ran into a couple of ladies outside the Thai restaurant in downtown (I love pad Thai), who said the Red Hen’s portions are so small that “you have to go home and eat dinner after eating there” and they suggested we try the Sheridan Livery Inn across the street. “It has

The Red Hen was closed for lunch. That’s Margie approaching.

a seafood salad to die for,” said one woman. “And the burgers … oooooh,” said the other.

In spite of the burger temptation (Margie is a burger addict), we both settled on the seafood salad and the woman was right. It was simply lovely and the lunch price was reasonable (about $9 each). We chatted with a young (25, looked 18) waitress who had just moved to Lexington because … well, because she wanted to. No school, no real plans. And she adores it. “I don’t know many people yet,” she said, “but I really love it here.”

It would be difficult not to be smitten by Lexington, I suspect. Margie and I actually took a wrong road out of town and drove around one of the most beautiful neighborhoods I’ve ever seen. The houses are Civil War era and perfectly manicured, like most of the downtown, which has a distinct European flavor.

Young clerk (a high school sophomore) wraps a gift for my daughter.

The shops and boutiques are always a lure for me. I wind up buying Christmas gifts at Artists in Cahoots nearly every year. It features arts and crafts from people who live in our mountains. Margie and I found a couple of gifts for her daughter and my daughter and grand daughter while dallying on the streets and I suspect there will be three happy gift recipients at Christmas.

Even with my planning screw-ups, this was a delightful excursion and I suspect Lexington could not be otherwise. It’s one of my favorite places.

Margie and I on the veranda of the Sheridan Livery Inn, which we both adore.


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