Katie Hazelwood and Mickey Kinnis opened Katie’s Cabin Kitchen earlier this month in Kuttawa in The Cabin Bait and Tackle Store on U.S. 62.
“I’ve always wanted to have my own place. I’ve always wanted to have my own restaurant, and do business for myself,” Hazelwood said.
The chance arrived when Hazelwood visited the tackle store during a fishing trip.
The owner of the tackle store informed Hazelwood the deli portion of the store was vacant. After business conversations and contemplation, Hazelwood decided to move forward and accept an offer.
Hazelwood said she doesn’t want to live with any regret, so taking advantage of opportunities and taking risks is necessary.
While she does not have experience as a business owner, Hazelwood has worked in the food and hospitality industry for many years. Up until her restaurant venture, Hazelwood worked at the Buzzard Rock Marina Resort, where Kinnis’ sister is the owner.
After finishing her military duties in the Army, Hazelwood found herself managing the restaurant.
Hazelwood had a multitude of responsibilities there. Despite her normal job duties and tasks, she always found a way to express her passion for cooking.
She baked cakes, pies and other pastries and sold them to customers for Buzzard Rock. Word of mouth spread quickly in the small Lake Barkley community, and her reputation for flavor and excellent customer service established a foundation for a small business endeavor.
Hazelwood is eager to grow her business and develop a robust clientele.
“I think once the word gets out there, it’s going to be big,” she said. “It’s hard waiting and being patient.”
Although the early stages of Katie’s Cabin are gratifying, Hazelwood is constantly imagining what it could be.
Currently, she has one employee. There are 10 tables and around 40 seats. Her goal is to upgrade her kitchen to have the ability to cook and prepare a variety of dishes. Hazelwood is also interested in expanding the business.
Hazelwood and Kinnis are keen on the quality of ingredients, and they appreciate the privilege to be near farmers and fresh produce. They work with the local Amish community as well.
Hazelwood and Kinnis have an overriding business principle, which is to contribute to the local economy by supporting other local businesses.
On Wednesday, Sept. 1, Hazelwood and Kinnis will celebrate and host a grand opening.
The Lake Barkley Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a ribbon-cutting event at 10:30 a.m, and WPKY is hosting a broadcast that morning as well.
Hazelwood and Kinnis met in trucking school; they got married in June 2020. They live in Eddyville.