Auntie Skinner's: Relaxed, Historic Atmosphere with Great Dinners and Local Beers
Aug. 30, 2017 at 11:45 a.m.
Updated Aug. 30, 2017 at 11:45 a.m.
I absolutely love visiting downtown Jefferson when the weather is beautiful – sunny, blue skies, a light breeze in the air. There’s nothing like walking the beautiful red brick streets and exploring antique shops. If you’re out for a day in Jefferson and decide you want to take a break and have a drink, do it like the locals and stop into Auntie Skinner’s Riverboat Club Restaurant and Bar.
I’ve been to Auntie Skinner’s many times and it’s always a very relaxed, friendly place to go. If you’re not familiar with Auntie Skinner’s, let me share some fun history with you. The restaurant has been a mainstay in Jefferson since it opened in 1983 across the street from the Marion County Courthouse. It’s a family-friendly restaurant that was named after the old Dixieland song, “Auntie Skinner’s Chicken Dinner.” (If you’re not familiar with this song, I encourage searching for it on YouTube. And, yes, Auntie Skinner’s food menu includes several chicken dinner options, including the Chicken Auntie Skinner Dinner, a Grilled Chicken Dinner, the Chicken Fried Chicken Dinner and the Chicken Strip Dinner.)
The building itself dates back to 1866 when it was constructed to serve as one of Jefferson’s many riverfront-district warehouses. The architecture has never been modernized so it exudes history. It features three double doors in front with beautiful fan windows that are reminiscent of New Orleans. Inside, history is everywhere. The walls are adorned with photos of old steamboats; if you look up, you’ll see an antique, red tin ceiling.
When you walk through the doors, expect to be warmly greeted by the friendly staff, as my boyfriend and I were when we recently stopped in for dinner. The employees here are very relaxed and make you feel at home. They’re happy to share stories and offer recommendations. The food menu is vast and includes salads, soups, sandwiches, burgers and a variety of dinners, such as the meals that feature chicken.
Harkening back to its roots as a saloon, Auntie Skinner’s is a smoker-friendly bar that features a vast array of drink options. On the beer menu, you’ll find everything from well-known brands to local favorites produced at area microbreweries. But you’ll also find a beer that you aren’t likely to find anywhere else except in Marshall: The Boogie Woogie Beer. It’s a golden ale that is light, crisp and easy to drink on a warm day. Marshall resident Alan Loudermilk created the Boogie Woogie Beer recipe a few years ago because he wanted a beer that highlighted Marshall’s history as the birthplace of Boogie Woogie. I highly recommend trying it.
If you aren’t in the mood for beer, the crew at Auntie Skinner’s can make just about any mixed drink you could want. I tried an Amaretto Sour (the favorite drink of my waitress during my most recent visit) and it tasted amazing. It combines amaretto liqueur with sweet and sour mix, and it’s divine!
If you’re looking to get out of town for the day, I highly recommend a visit to Jefferson and a stop into Auntie Skinner’s. From the food and drinks to the friendly staff, you’ll feel right at home and will not be disappointed.
Auntie Skinner’s Riverboat Club Restaurant and Bar
- 107 W. Austin St., Jefferson | (903) 665-7121
- 11 a.m. until close Sunday-Thursday (no set closing time)
- 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Friday-Saturday
- Accepts: Credit Cards Yes
- Good for Groups: Yes
- Attire: Casual
- Ambience: Casual
- Noise: Level Average
- Alcohol: Full Bar
- Happy Hour: Yes
- Outdoor Seating: No
- Has TV: Yes
- Best Nights: Fridays, Saturdays