Crunchy chicken with blackberry barbecue sauce. Sauteed brussels sprouts. Pineapple and beet salad.

A VISIT TO CAPERS CAFE AND CELLAR IN HARTFORD, KENTUCKY

I enjoyed that extraordinary meal at Capers Cafe and Cellar in downtown Hartford, Kentucky three years ago. Producer Ash enjoyed a phenomenal pork chop and we recorded our trip for a Tri-State Bucket List visit:

CAPERS IN HARTFORD IS CLOSING

Okay, so now I want those brussels sprouts again. And, well, everything else, too. But I'd better hurry. Proprietor Dave White has announced that Capers Cafe will be closing at the end of October.

"Growing up in a small town in northern Indiana, my parents would occasionally take us out for dinner. Sometimes we would drive several miles just to eat at one particular place. One such place was in a tiny farm town surrounded by cornfields called Beecher, Illinois.

One time we had to park a distance from the entrance. As we walked through the parking lot, I noticed license plates from different counties, states, and even from Chicago. I asked my dad why people would drive so far just to eat there. He simply said that this place had 'the best food and service around.'

We visited several such places, and I have sought them out ever since. My 14-year mission at Capers Cafe has been to create an exceptional small-town cafe. Whether I have done that remains in the eyes of my patrons.

Our last day will be Saturday, October 30th, 2021. How else to celebrate but to have a party!! We will feature a delicious assorted appetizer buffet--including seafood, steak bites, BBQ, international favorites and bite-size specials from our menu. We will also have drink specials from the bar, a live musical guest (Josh Orion will be performing), and a silent auction of our decor, paintings, dishes, miscellaneous collectibles, some equipment, and antiques. Limited table reservations are available, as well as open seating. Halloween costumes are optional."

LIFE AFTER CAPERS..."STAY TUNED"

I spoke with Dave White and he essentially told me to "dry my tears," as he is quite positive about the future. When I asked why he came to the conclusion that Capers needed to close, he told me he was going through what it seems so many businesses are experiencing these days--he can't get enough help.

Capers has been an attractive destination, not just in Ohio County and surrounding counties, but for folks from long distances away. Dave told me he's had patrons from Louisville, Bowling Green, Leitchfield, and even Annapolis, Maryland make the trip to Hartford after seeing his menu online...just like how he described his childhood in his Facebook post.

I can relate. We used to do that when I was a kid. I still do.

It was good to talk to Dave. He's very upbeat about where he's headed from this point in his life and very realistic about the times in which we live.

As he said before we finished our conversation, "Stay tuned...I'm not done yet."

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