There’s a giant cup outside the store just in case you can’t read well before you’ve had your cuppa (and I’ve had mornings like that). Sure, you can have a pannini or a smoothie if you’d like to play at actual nutrition, but I followed advice and went straight for the cheesecake brownie. Yum. Someone told me to get a “banana chocolate chip” something, but I forgot to write down a banana chocolate chip WHAT, and I was too shy to ask–but you don’t have to be! Should you not need caffeine (huh?), rumor has it this place makes the best hot chocolate around. And when’s the last time someone offered you a full menu of whipped cream choices???
This is exactly the kind of store DestiKNITions loves to feature–you’ve got to go looking for it, but you’re a welcome “regular” from the moment you walk in the door. The clues are all here: a big table filled with chatting regulars in the middle of the room, stuffed couches and chairs, packed wall-to-wall with great product. I always know I’m in a good place when an interview that supposed to be with the store’s owner ends up an opinionated free-for-all with everyone in the store. That’s my definition of a good time in knittingland. Sure, you can plan ahead to attend the Thursday night Stitch N Bitch or drag an as-of-yet-uninitiated buddy to the “Learn to Knit” class every Saturday from 12-2, but Knit Nook is the kind of place where you’ll find help, encouragement, and someone to help you master that knitted praying mantis you thought was a good idea when you started it six weeks ago (really).
Barbara Franc, owner of Sophie’s (aww, Sophie’s her mom!) lives to inspire you. Seriously. The woman is so warm and encouraging you find yourself exhaling just talking to her. This is the place to get “sucked in and hugged on.” The world would be a better, more peaceful place if that happened to everyone. Barbara, who’s helper skills occupational therapy background shines through her every word, “dearly loves” beginners. She takes her education of knitters like a life’s work, encouraging folks to expand their knowledge base to go forth and tackle new things. “We want to hold your hand,” she says with a smile on her face. The “couch time” offered by the store is essentially knitting “office hours” where you can plop down with your gazillion dropped stitches and find your way back to productivity. One on one help is easy to find here, but so are great classes, Wednesday night pot lucks, Friday night knit-ins, and a killer dish cloth swap.
Now, in a DestiKNITions first, there is only ONE stop I’m going to recommend here. Because believe me, this is all you need. Drive directly down Shelbyville Road until you reach down-home gastronomic heaven:
Oh. My. Gosh. I had this thing, this delectable heaven of a pie that was cherry pie underneath and chocolate fudge on top. I had a yellow cupcake dipped in caramel frosting, not just frosted on top–the first non-chocolate baked good I have ever truly adored. And a great sandwich. With excellent soup. And a massive mug of really good coffee. Not latte, honest-to-goodness-coffee. I made an idiot of myself moaning over the food and I didn’t need to eat for the rest of the day. There are several locations around the area, and only some of them have a deli attached to them, but I was glad to have been directed to one because the food was as fab as the pie. I strongly suspect this will go down as the year’s best desert. If you shopped yourself into a stupor yesterday in the Highlands, all you need to do is slide into a booth here and end your visit in food heaven.
BUT WAIT…I can’t just leave you like this. We need a give-away to round out this adventure! Leave a comment on any Louisville episode installment–here or either of the knit-alongs–and win a spiffy prize package from Sophie’s Fine Yarn Shoppe. You’ll receive this roomy project bag, a handy needle and hook gauge, and Ann Budd’s invaluable “Yarn Requirements” yardage guide. Like last time, you’ll receive an entry for every comment (but only one entry per day, so play nice).