The reason this country restaurant in nearby Shelbyville looks more like a house than a restaurant is because it indeed used to be a house. And not just any house. It was owned by Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame, as well as his wife Claudia, for whom the eatery was named. Sanders wasn’t born locally, and his first fast-food eatery wasn’t located here, but this is the base from which KFC became a worldwide sensation. When Sanders sold the business in 1964, he and his wife opened the Claudia Sanders Dinner House, still a local landmark years after their death.
Dishes here are old-fashioned, country favorites served family style. Of course, you’ll find fried chicken on the menu, although you can also order chicken breast, chicken livers, sugar-cured Kentucky country ham, hot brown, lasagna, and ham and biscuits, along with an assortment of sandwiches and salads. The dinner menu also includes steaks, chops, and seafood, while the kids’ menu includes drumsticks and mashed potatoes, chicken breast tenders, hamburgers, grilled cheese, and bacon cheese fries. Homemade desserts include cobblers, sundaes, and Kentucky pie — made with chocolate chips and pecans like Derby Pie but without the bourbon. Open Tuesday through Sunday for lunch and dinner.