The Eastern Kentucky Chili Bun Trail: Snack Shack In Mount Vernon

The Snack Shack in Mt Vernon is part of the Eastern Kentucky Chili Bun Trail

It’s 20 minutes up the road from the Snack Shack in Mt Vernon to get to the ancestral grounds of mountain music legend Red Foley. He was from Blue Lick.

I’m thinking about Red as I wheel my old Econoline van into the parking lot of Snack Shack near downtown Mt Vernon. I’ve got a cassette deck and a tape of Foley that I’d bought at Sammy’s flea market between Corbin and Gray not even an hour south of here.

Glenda McFerron Smith is the owner of the Snack Shack in Mt Vernon Kentucky

Red’s in fine form and I hate to shut him off but I’m in need of a chili bun and I know Snack Shack’s fit to bring me one to table.

Glenda McFerron Smith is a pistol. She’s the owner of the restaurant and is excited to show a stranger around her tiny, immaculate kitchen.

RL Reeves Jr’s Eastern Kentucky Chili Bun Trail

A humble little housewife-style cook stove sits off in one corner. Lord only knows how many gallons of chili have been scooped out of old pots on this thing over the years.

And that chili. As Jed Clampett would say “whooo doggie.” The wet, slightly sweet meat is folded into a fresh, white flour bun then garnished with yellow mustard and chopped white onion. The feast is under $2.

It’s a good, standard version of the form.

Snack Shack 405 Richmond St, Mt Vernon, KY 40456

A steady stream of customers file in and out of the Snack Shack during my visit nearly every one of them leaving with some frozen ice cream concoction. The grill lady also stays busy hustling out hamburgers and french fries.

I ask a fellow diner what he thinks about Red Foley. He allows that he’s not sure he knows who he is but he must be famous; there’s a Red Foley Road on the other side of the highway.

I pull out of the parking lot and point east to see if I can find the road that leads to Red.

View of the kitchen at Snack Shack restaurant in Mt Vernon Kentucky

405 Richmond St
Mt Vernon, Kentucky

Telephone (606) 256-2212

Hours of operation
always call ahead

The Eastern Kentucky Chili Bun Trail

map of Blue Lick

Amon’s Sugar Shack Chili Recipe

About RL Reeves Jr

I'm a writer living and working in New Orleans, Louisiana.
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