Pat’s Lounge is one of my all time favorite burger joints. Whenever I am in the Clay County area, I always stop for a plain cheeseburger with Grippos. There is just something special about the atmosphere and down-home feel of this unique, and historic little restaurant.
My Dad is a Clay County native, born and raised in Sexton’s Creek. When I was a little girl, he always stopped on the way to the farm and would take me inside to Pat’s and show me off. I always enjoyed it, and those memories have stuck with me. I believe if you ask anyone from Clay County, they have a story to tell that involves this famous little place.
Founded during WWII by Pat House, who was also one of Clay County’s first basketball stars, Pat’s was a quick growing institution. By all accounts, House, was very particular about the meats he bought and the food that was served in his restaurant. My Dad always referred to the place as “Pat’s Pool Room” because that’s what it was. Rough around the edges, you’d always see groups of men playing games of pool, complete with plumes of cigarette smoke billowing and plenty of rough language.
Today, the place has been remodeled, and when I went in a few months ago, it was almost unrecognizable in comparison to the Pat’s I knew when I was young. No more plumes of cigarette smoke, or raunchy games of pool. They do have big screen televisions to watch ballgames, and since Manchester is wet now, you can enjoy a beer with your burger, which is always a plus. You can also purchase an authentic Pat’s tee shirt which reads, “Pat’s Burgers. Nobody beats our meat.” Hilarious.
If you are ever in Manchester and would like to stop and soak in some local history and get an amazing burger, Pat’s is your place. I promise you are not going to leave disappointed. Be sure to get the Grippos with the burger though, it makes all the difference.
For a more in depth description and history of Pat’s, hop on over to the “Eat Kentucky” blog and see what writer Alan Cornett has to say. He is also a Clay County native, with plenty of Pat’s lore and history.