By Kevin Williams
One trend I've noticed in recent years is for people who aren't Amish opening "Amish stores." How do you feel about that? I mean, clearly you can go have Italian food at a restaurant that isn't run by Italians. Do you have to have a connection to the culture to create a cultural experience? Shrug. Don't know. These stores seem, not surprisingly, to be most common in areas where there aren't an Amish around. But in recent years faux Amish stores have opened up in places as disparate as Utah and Hazard, Kentucky, all trying to capitalize on their Amish aura. The formula seems to be pretty standard: have a deli with some Amish country cheese, offer bulk foods and spices, and carry some Walnut Creek or Jake n Amos brands.
My parents stopped at the Old Town Amish Country Store off off I-76 in Berea, Kentucky recently on their way south. From what I could tell, my parents thought the place was "okay." You can read a lot more on Yelp. With I-75 being such a main north-south artery in the Midwest, has anyone else stopped here? If so, what did you think?