My family (the Jersey crew) has been in town this past week, and showing them around our still new hometown of Lexington, KY has been a lot of fun. I’ve got a few posts about the visit lined up, but first I’d like to share about a wildly successful day trip we took. It involves pizza.
Because this was the first time my ENTIRE family was visiting (all at once) since we moved to Lex, we had a long list of places to show them. The cafes, the restaurants, where to get the best donuts, the pretty houses on South Ashland, Stella’s desserts at 310, where to go for an incredible craft beer selection, the trails we take through Hamburg in springtime, the charming FindersKeepers Market (where my sister works now!), and… you get the point. It was a long list. Once we exhausted a bunch of the in-town attractions, the 3 things we wanted to introduce beyond Lexington’s borders were hiking at Red River Gorge and the 2 restaurants we stop at post-hike for absolutely fantastic food.
Red River Rockhouse and Miguel’s are the places to eat if you’re heading to the Gorge for a day of climbing, hiking or water-sporting. You go to RRR for a menu ranging from burgers to burritos and cold beer (all of it: phenomenal), and you go to Miguel’s for pizza with pretty much any topping you can dream of. In an ideal world, we would have been able to hit both places after our hike, but there was only time for 1 stop and everyone wanted pizza. Magnificent pizza.
There’s nothing like hiking for 1-2 hours up to Natural Bridge on a cool spring day followed by sitting down to pizza and Ale-8s at Miguel’s and then a nap-filled hour long drive home.
Miguel’s is a one-of-a-kind pizza joint. Every establishment at the Gorge caters mainly to tourists and climbers, and Miguel’s is no exception. While standing in line filling out your pizza slip (ie. checking off every meat and vegetable box), you can also purchase climbing gear (helmets, ropes, shoes) while admiring unique wall art and really cool climbing photography. Once your order is placed, you can either sit inside, or head out back where you’ll find a fully functional campground — home to climbers from all over the country.
We made a joke one time about how if you check the license plates of the cars in the Miguel’s parking lot, you’ll have to look hard to find 2 from the same state. We tested this theory on our recent visit, and it held true. The first row of cars had plates from Utah, Quebec, Ohio, Colorado, New York, Tennessee, Florida and Arizona. We threw Kentucky and New Jersey into the mix with our car, Dave’s motorcycle and my mom’s motorcycle. Oh, did I mention my mom is a biker??
What an awesome day!! I’ll be sharing lots of pictures from our hike in an upcoming post, but for now I hope you enjoy some of this pizza eye-candy and start making plans to visit Kentucky! Have you ever been out this way? Are you a post-hike pizza fan? Share your outdoorsy/foodie adventures in the comments below! I’d love to hear your stories!
Lexington-based gems mentioned in this post:
Wine + Market – website | facebook
The Village Idiot – website | facebook
North Lime Coffee + Donuts – website | facebook
BraveTart (the blog of Stella Parks — head pastry chef at Table 310) – website | facebook
Table 310 – website | facebook
The Beer Trappe – website | facebook
FindersKeepers Market – website | facebook