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SPRING 2005

700 maps

restaurant reviews inside!

and

to them all

recipes louisville’s own hot brown plus a phantasmagoria of pasta

pasta! pasta! pasta!

road trip blues & barbecue in memphis

taking stock of louisville’s top chefs profiles of 6 blue chips & 6 hot prospects

$ 4 . 9 9 U. S .

www.foodanddiningmagazine.com


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Z’s steaks are selected from Prime mid-western aged beef, hand-cut to order and cooked the way you like it. Z’s seafood is purchased directly from “day boat fisherman,” prepared simply and cooked to perfection. Don’t call prior to 4:00 p.m. about seafood specials for the evening… Chef is still at the airport… we just don’t know, yet! Z’s oyster lovers can select from both East and West Coast oysters!

Lunch

Monday – Friday

11:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Dinner

Monday – Thursday Friday – Saturday Sunday

5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. 5:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Louisville’s ★The ★ ★★&◆◆◆◆ Courier-Journal Restaurant

2005 America’s Top 10 Seafood Houses

Opened in October 2000, Z’s Oyster Bar & Steakhouse is independently owned and operated.

101 Whittington Parkway Louisville, KY 40222 Telephone (502) 429-8000 Facsimile (502) 339-0335 www.zsoysterbar.com


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Choose Your Dealership

As Carefully as You Choose Your Car.

Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re Riding On Our Reputation!

The Sam Swope Auto Group is pleased to offer a vast selection of new automobiles from some of the finest manufacturers in the world making us the #1 new car dealer in the region. As the #1 used car dealer, Sam Swope is also The Used Car Authority with over 1,000 vehicles to choose from for immediate delivery. A Sam Swope Premier Pre-owned vehicle offers a quality automobile, at the right price, backed by an exclusive package of owner benefits including a 7 day exchange policy, warranty coverage up to 60 days, and complimentary Emergency Roadside Rescue. You can buy with confidence from a Sam Swope dealership. Quality automobiles. Competitive prices. Outstanding service. Once you see all that the Sam Swope Auto Group has to offer you will understand whyâ&#x20AC;Ś

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502-499-5000 I www.SamSwope.com


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Great Food | Great Service | Great Attitude SPRING 2005 PUBLISHER JOHN CARLOS WHITE EDITOR-IN-CHIEF ROBIN GARR VICE PRESIDENT OF OPERATIONS DANIEL F. BOYLE COLUMNISTS ROGER A. BAYLOR ROBIN GARR RON JOHNSON DAVID LANGE JERRY SLATER CONTRIBUTING WRITERS MARTY ROSEN MICHAEL L. JONES CONTRIBUTING CHEFS COLLEN ENGLE KIMBERLY JONES CHIEF RESTAURANT CRITIC ROBIN GARR CONTRIBUTING RESTAURANT CRITIC MARTY ROSEN

A seasonal menu with fresh seafood, pasta, steaks and salads 5 Wine Spectator Awards of Excellence Patio dining with oak wood grill and vine-trellised arbor 3-1/2 Stars Louisville Courier-Journal

CHIEF PHOTOGRAPHER DAN DRY GRAPHIC DESIGN KATHY KULWICKI STEFAN TAMBURRO COPY EDITOR PAIGE A. MOORE ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES ANNETTE B. WHITE TOM SFURA

Food & Dining Magazine® is published quarterly by Louisville Dining Magazine, Inc. P.O. Box 665, Louisville KY. 40201.

Upscale-casual dining featuring Northern California cuisine with Pacific Rim “fusion”

Single copies $4.99, Annual Subscriptions rate $18.00. Submit subscription requests to: Food & Dining Magazine® P.O. Box 665, Louisville KY 40201, or call (502) 493-5511 ext. 540 or subscribe online at www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

Dinner 7 nights a week Lunch Monday-Friday 11a.m. to 2 p.m.

The publisher and advertisers are not responsible or liable for misprints, typographical errors or misinformation. The opinions expressed herein are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the publisher. Food & Dining Magazine® and Louisville Dining Magazine Inc. are in no way affiliated with Louisville Magazine® or any of its affiliates. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

For Advertising information call (502) 493-5511 ext. 550

ON THE COVER

502-893-0141 3938 Dupont Circle Louisville, KY 40207

Chef Anoosh Shariat of Park Place Restaurant (see profile page 14) creates a shrimp julep of seared jumbo shrimp and linguine tossed in a Bourbon mint sauce. Photo by Dan Dry

4

Spring 2005

www.foodanddiningmagazine.com


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contents

FEATURES

SPRING 2005

BLUE CHIPS AND HOT PROSPECTS

13

Hot dining tips from writers Marty Rosen and Michael L. Jones, who profile long-time performers and rising stars in Louisville restaurant kitchens.

PASTA! PASTA! PASTA!

46

Here is Food & Dining’s field guide to pasta in all its shapes and sizes.

COLUMNS

46 54

NEWS AND NOTES COMINGS & GOINGS

10

Recent openings, closings, moves and changes on the local restaurant beat.

LIQUIDS SPIRITS: Bourbon cocktails

38

36

Beyond the mint julep: Old-fashioned to modern, our mixologist Jerry Slater checks out the Bourbon scene.

CORK 101: Great wine you can afford

38

Robin Garr, buying on a budget, lists 12 excellent wines for $15 or less.

HIP HOPS: Belgian brews

40

Brewmeister Roger A. Baylor drinks beer at Belgian cafés and brings back this thirst-provoking report.

COFFEE:Talking the Java Jive

42

“Give me a grande—wet, skinny and on a leash.” Say what? David Lange educates us in the vocabulary of the coffee house.

TRAVEL ROAD TRIP! Memphis

44

Ron Johnson is on the road again, this time sampling good food and blues in Memphis.

13

RECIPES

34

LOUISVILLE’S RESTAURANT FAVORITES The Hot Brown – Chef Joe Castro shows us how to fashion the Brown Hotel’s saucy turkey-and-bacon dish that has become a Louisville tradition.

34

TOP CHEF RECIPES

54

Sullivan University guest chefs guide us through four innovative, delicious pasta dishes that you can make in your own kitchen.

RESTAURANT GUIDE DINING GUIDE

58

Restaurant reviews and contact info for more than 900 regional restaurants.

MAPS

90

From the smallest hole-in-the-wall to the fanciest table, you will find all 900 restaurants conveniently mapped out here. www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005

5


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9OURCUSTOMERSBECOME REGULARS 4HEN FRIENDS !ND AFEW FAMILY 7EHAVEALOTINCOMMON !TTHEHEARTOFYOURBUSINESSISTHERELATIONSHIPYOUHAVEWITHYOURCUSTOMERS)TSHOWSINFAMILIARSMILES IN EMPTYPLATES!NDWHILEYOURCUSTOMERSMAYTHINKTHEIRMEALCOMESFROMYOURKITCHEN WEKNOWITSMORE THANJUSTTHAT)TCOMESFROMYOURYEARSOFDEDICATIONANDTIRELESSSERVICEˆLESSONSWEVELEARNEDSINCE

WHILE SERVING YOU OUR CUSTOMER /UR PROMISE IS TO SERVE YOU WITH THE SAME LEVEL OF COMMITMENT YOU PROVIDE YOUR CUSTOMERS !LWAYS DOING WHAT IT TAKES TO HELP YOUR BUSINESS SUCCEED EVERY DAY WITH EVERY DISH !FTERALL IFYOUKEEPYOURCUSTOMERSHAPPY THEYLLKEEPCOMINGBACK

4OSPEAKTOA'ORDON&OOD3ERVICEšREPRESENTATIVE ORTOSCHEDULEANINFORMATIONALMEETING CALL   

WWWGFSCOM


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Lentini’s - a little bit of Italy here in Louisville When you’re here... ...you feel like you’re here.

Regional Italian Cuisine, Seasonal Specialties, Steaks and Chops

A Louisville tradition for over 40 years

Voted Louisville’s Best Italian Restaurant, Leo Weekly 2004

Join us for dinner Tuesday through Sunday

Louisville’s Only Exclusive Italian Wine List Award of Excellence, Wine Spectator 2004 & 2005

1543 Bardstown Road

Reservations Recommended

Private Dining Rooms Available

502-459-3020


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When it comes to service, we never cut corners. Just great steaks. Open for dinner nightly and at noon on Sunday. Extensive Wine List and Full Service Bar. Private dining room and priority seating available. Gift Cards available.

s t o n e y r i v e r. c o m

3900 Summit Plaza Drive • At the Summit Plaza Shopping Center • Louisville, KY • (502) 429-8944 ©2005 11350


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news and notes

Blame the national economy and the price of gasoline, or just blame winter, but for whatever reason, recent months have seen an unhappy uptick in the rate of restaurant closings in the Louisville area. A total of 22 familiar spots have gone dark since the first of the year, while 17 new eateries opened for business, making the winter of 2005 the first calendar quarter in recent years that saw more restaurants close than open. Somewhat easing the pain, four of the closed restaurants were quickly replaced by new incarnations, eight more existing restaurants opened additional properties in new locations, and three of the closings involved single properties of restaurants with multiple locations that remained in business elsewhere. Our advice? Support your local eateries! If you haven’t been out to dinner recently, choose a favorite local restaurant and enjoy an evening out sometime soon. Here’s the quarterly summary of business activity on the local restaurant scene.

NYC-style pies, has moved much closer to the city at 1503 Lynch Lane in Clarksville. Also on the Sunny Side, welcome California’s Coffee House, 1515 E. Market Street, and DBL Shotz, 1315 Spring Street, in Jeffersonville; Smokin’ BBQ, 1611 CharlestownNew Albany Pike, and El Restaurante Chiquito, 624 Cherry Street in New Albany; and Petterson’s Bar-B-Q Barn, 7705 Hwy 311 in Sellersburg. Additional locations for existing restaurants popped up in eight locations: in Clarksville, Cheddar’s, 1385 Veterans Parkway, and Famous Dave’s, 1351 Veterans Parkway. In addition to its own restaurants, the Marriott spawned another Starbucks; and not to be outdone, so did the Seelbach Hotel. Adding new branches in Louisville were Firehouse Bar B Q, 808 Lyndon Lane; Java Brewing Co., 2309 Frankfort Avenue (former Allo Spiedo); Papa Murphy’s, 6756 Bardstown Road; and Qdoba, 8602 Citadel Way. Four departures were replaced by virtually immediate successors: Coy’s takes over from Longino’s Grill at 4041 Preston Highway; Duke’s Grille & Bar succeeds Red Horse Grill & Bar in the Holiday Inn Airport East at 4004 Gardiner Point. Bus Parsons’s old River Creek Inn closed its doors at 6301 Upper River Road after last winter’s Ohio River flooding, but Pearly’s Seafood takes its place in a much-renovated building that adds a Key West flavor. Finally, popular restaurateur Rick Dissell is back, converting the short-lived Indigo Bistro and Bar, 3930 Chenoweth Square, to Rick’s Ferrari Grille.

OPENINGS

CLOSINGS

Leading the activity was the opening of the posh new Louisville Marriott Downtown at 280 W. Jefferson Street, with the stylish, upscale BLU Italian Mediterranean Grille as its signature restaurant, with The Bar at BLU. Also at the Marriott, Champions Sports Bar, with its Cards-and-Wildcats theme, saw heavy inaugural activity during the NCAA Final Four. Tiny and very casual, but generating a loud buzz on the southern side of downtown for its exceptional Arabian fare, is Safier Mediterranean Deli, between Broadway and Chestnut at 641 S. Fourth Street. In the casual-upscale category, welcome 316 Ormsby, whose name gives away its location, a stylish spot in the attractive Old Louisville red-brick building that had housed Central Park Café. Another welcome new arrival, The Monkey Wrench, persevered through months of regulatory red tape before opening its doors in the attractively renovated former home of Pita Delights at 1025 Barret Avenue. Out in St. Matthews, Diamond Pub & Billiards offers fun and games and good things to eat at 3814 Frankfort Avenue, the newish building that had housed Rick’s and J. Harrod’s. If you’ve got room for dessert, you’ll find very fine homemade ones, plus coffee and tea, just a few blocks toward town at The Sweet Tooth, 3110 Frankfort Avenue. And way out east, fanciers of Asian fare will find Jasmine well-worth the drive past Middletown to 13823 English Villa Drive. Not just another fast-food Chinese place, it offers familiar Chinese-American dishes and seriously authentic Chinese dishes in a stylish shopping-center space. Other new arrivals on the Kentucky side include A Taste of China, 1167 S. Fourth Street, and Tequila Mexican Restaurant, 7803 Old Third Street Road. In Southern Indiana, New York Capri Pizza, which used to attract Louisvillians all the way up to Borden, Indiana, for its fine

Perhaps the highest-profile closing of the period was Jicama Grill, 1538 Bardstown Road, where longtime partners Jun Eugenio and Chef Anthony Lamas severed their relationship in a noisy dispute. Lamas says he plans to reopen after renovations as Seviche A Latin Grill. Beset by neighborhood controversy, @mosphere apparently gave up the liquor-license fight at 917 Baxter Avenue. Baja Fresh Mexican Grill shuttered its modern fast-food operation at 1255 Bardstown Road, and Olmecas became the latest restaurant failure in the long string of short-lived ventures at 1582 Bardstown Road, long home of the old and still fondly remembered Parisian Pantry. Highlands pizza enthusiasts are still bereft after the sudden closing of Impellizzeri’s Pizza, 2306 Bardstown Road, although it should be noted that restaurateur Benny Impellizzeri’s brother, Tony, continues to fashion virtually identical pies in the eastern suburbs at Tony Impellizzeri’s Pizza, 108 Vieux Carre Drive. Other closings during the period: BB’s Chicken & Ribs, 318 Wallace Avenue; Binky’s of Chicago, 528 S. Fifth Street; Caspian Grille, 4218 Bishop Lane; Garrett’s Hickory Grille, 9601 Shelbyville Road; Huttster’s Burger, 2900 Brownsboro Road; Two Bucks, 4113 Murphy Lane; Greek Paradise, 2113 Frankfort Avenue; Luchessi’s Ravioli & Pasta Co., 2225 Holiday Manor; and, in Southern Indiana, Café Chardeau, 359 Spring Street in Jeffersonville. Finally, these restaurants closed specific properties while other outlets remained open: Java Brewing Company in Middletown, Lemongrass Café near Springhurst, and Jumbo Buffet in Clarksville. F&D

&goings

comings

10 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

(Do you have information on something we missed? Send it to editor@foodanddiningmagazine.com)


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Our Passion. Your Passion. Since 1982, our passion for teaching has produced some of the ďŹ nest chefs, cooks, pastry chefs, catering professionals and hotel & restaurant managers in the country. With 100% graduate employment since the beginning, our passion really pays. Give us a call to see what we can do for you!

Information and Admissions

502.456.6505

3101 Bardstown Road â&#x20AC;˘ Louisville, KY 40205

800.844.1354 www.sullivan.edu


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TRIPLE-A AFFILIATE OF THE CINCINNATI REDS

Brews,Brats, Balls&Bats! When you are looking for great food and baseball action, come on over to our house. It’s always a fun and tasty visit. Catch a ballgame (April thru September) and enjoy all of the great traditional ballpark fare, as well as unique food and beverages that our stadium has to offer. Louisville Slugger Field is our city’s premier entertainment showplace, and it’s steps away from most downtown shopping and hot spots. Come on out and enjoy an experience you can totally sink your teeth into with the Bats!

Bats Baseball... The Name Of Our Game Is FUN! 12 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

www.batsbaseball.com 401 East Main Street • Louisville, Kentucky 40202 • 502.212.2287


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people and places profiles

PHOTOGRAPHS BY DAN DRY

of Louisville’s The true measure of a chef, it is said, is the quality of his stock. Stock, after all, is the essential distillation of meat, poultry, fish or vegetable flavor, a work of culinary art that requires skill and experience to achieve perfection through simplicity. Indeed, stock is so basic to fine dining that we might compare our city’s restaurant scene to a “stock market,” an investment in good eats that pays dividends in flavor. And just as the world financial markets have their puts and calls, bulls and bears, short-selling options and steady long-term performers, we think it’s possible to identify some of the top chefs as blue chips—solid, established issues that have stood the test of time—and a few more as hot prospects, newer to the scene but rising fast, showing promise of significant returns. Like any good market analyst, we don’t declare the following group of top chefs to be comprehensive or exhaustive. Consider it our tipsheet on six impressive, long-term performers, to go along with other blue chips we’ve covered before, like Kathy Cary of Lilly’s (Fall 2004), Agostino Gabriele of Vincenzo’s (Fall 2003) and Peng Looi of Asiatique (Summer 2003), just to name a few.The same principle applies to the hot prospects we present for your consideration:They’re not the city’s only fast-rising cooking stars, but they’re six mighty good ones.

&

BLUE CHIPS BY MARTY ROSEN

Dean Corbett, Equus & Jack’s Lounge

Jim Gerhardt and Michael Cunha, Limestone

HOT PROSPECTS BY MICHAEL L. JONES

Stephen Young, Artemisia

Charlie Owen, Leander’s

David Salvo and John Castro, Winston’s

Joe Castro, Brown Hotel

Anoosh Shariat, Park Place & Browning’s

Chris Gibson, Fusion

Clay Wallace, Café Lou Lou

Tim Smith, Napa River Grill

www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 13


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people and places profiles

BY MARTY ROSEN | PHOTOGRAPHS BY DAN DRY

anoosh shariat Pa r k P l a c e R e s t a u r a n t 4 0 1 E . M a i n S t re e t 515-0172

BLUE CHIP

A

.s a child in Iran,Anoosh Shariat was .a picky eater. Fortunately, he grew .up in a household and a city that could accommodate his tastes. “Back then, everything was done from scratch. In the summer my mom would buy a bunch of tomatoes. She would cut them, and put salt on them, and then put them on the rooftop. They were flat rooftops, and we didn’t have much pollution or dust, so you could do that. The sunlight would dry the tomatoes, and three or four weeks later she would make a wonderful sun-dried tomato paste. Dried fruit is part of our tradition over there, so making tomato paste or drying limes was one of the ways we stored food for the winter.” Iranian tradition wasn’t the only thing that influenced his youthful tastes. In those days, before revolution toppled the Shah, the capital city Teheran was also home to a thriving community of French businessmen and engineers who brought with them a taste for continental cuisine. Though the picky youth was an eager observer of his mother’s kitchen, it wasn’t until 1972, when Shariat moved to Germany to study engineering, that he took a professional interest in cooking. It was virtually a matter of survival. As a 14year-old student, he wanted to eat, he said, “and the best way to eat was to work in a restaurant.” He first worked in a university commissary in Gottingen, and then moved to Cologne, where he worked in a 40-seat French restaurant.That experience got him excited about food:“That’s where I learned classic French food, escargot, octopus soups. We made a blackboard menu every day, and when it was gone, it was gone. I washed dishes, made salads, and picked up any pointers I could.” By 1977, Shariat had moved to Texas with plans to continue his studies in engineering. Then the Shah tumbled. Like 14 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

many Iranians residing in the U.S., Shariat found his life in turmoil when Iranian student visas were cancelled. He requested and received asylum in the U.S. In the next few years, he recalls, “It was tough getting a job as an Iranian. People were being fired. There was so much hostility because of the hostages. Some of my friends dyed their hair, so it wouldn’t be so obvious that they were Iranian. It was a rough situation.” But the restaurant business has always offered sanctuary for folks with talent and

a willingness to work. “Most of the time,” said Shariat,“we get the cream of the crop, but in the restaurant business we’re maybe not so discriminating in our hiring as in other businesses.” Texas was in the midst of a culinary boom fueled by a thriving oil economy and growing interest in fine dining. Shariat found himself working with chefs who were sticklers for flavor and presentation, tableside carving, elaborate service platters and high levels of service. By the time he was 25 he realized that, rather than going


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back to school, he wanted to remain a chef. “I set myself some goals. I decided that by 32 I wanted to be an executive chef and that by 35 I wanted to achieve my own restaurant.” To meet those goals, he said, “I became a kind of culinary mercenary, if you will. I had very versatile experience, and I liked a challenge, so I developed a reputation for fixing restaurants up when they were in trouble, saving them and reorganizing them. I rebuilt this little French bistro, and then through a friend I was introduced to Remington’s here in Louisville. It was having some trouble, so I came here, met Charles Osborn, the owner, and fell in love with Louisville.” Geography was a factor, too. Shariat’s wife, Sharon, was expecting their first child, and Louisville was closer to her family in North Carolina than Texas. “The rest,” he said, “is history.” That was 1987, and under Shariat’s stewardship, Remington’s (on Hurstbourne Lane in the spot now occupied by Olive Garden) became an influential part of the Louisville dining scene of the era. Remington’s eventually closed, but that opened the door for Shariat to open his own restaurant, the much-cherished Shariat’s, on November 16, 1993, beating his goal by two years—he was 33. A decade later, ready for a change, he closed Shariat’s and sought other opportunities. In the end, he was lured downtown to take over the two restaurants located in Slugger Field: the fine dining Wellinghurst’s Steakhouse (which he promptly re-named Park Place on Main) and the more casual Browning’s. A year later, he has transformed both into critically acclaimed restaurants. “It was the perfect opportunity,” he said. “The unique thing was the opportunity to work in two areas of food that I love, to combine fine-dining with casual and fun food. It always made me a little sad that I would only see my guests on birthdays or special occasions, and this gives me the opportunity to see people more often. We have two separate kitchens back to back, so we cross-train as much as we can, but each side has its own chefs and techniques. In Park Place we try to get into the essence of flavors, so we want the highest quality. But for me, creating the best pizza or Hot Brown is just as satisfying as anything else. It’s

Page 15

simple food on the Browning’s side, but there’s nothing better than using fresh ingredients and keeping it consistent.” Longtime Shariat fans will be gratified to learn that Anoosh, himself a vegetarian, continues to offer a wide range of meatless menu options in addition to his offerings for omnivores. “In Park Place we customize three-, five- or seven-course vegetarian menus. We do a lot of custom dishes because there are so many varieties of vegetarian—vegans, lacto, fruitarians,

people who don’t want anything cooked, raw foods. I try to respect all their wishes. I love the challenge of customizing a dish, because it’s so fun. And it forces you to improvise. Improvising in the kitchen is a must. You improvise with a sauce, or an ingredient, but you never improvise with quality. Need is the mother of invention.”

Chef Shariat’s asparagus ravioli with oven-roasted tomatoes and asparagus tips.


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people and places profiles dean corbett E q u u s & J a c k ’s L o u n ge 1 2 2 S e a r s Ave n u e 897-9721 & 897-9026

BLUE CHIP

S

tart talking to Dean Corbett about the management philosophy that has turned his side-by-side restaurants, Equus and Jack’s Lounge, into two of Louisville’s most popular dining spots, and he’ll start telling stories about his father, Jack. “He was a corporate aluminum salesman who became a restaurateur after my mother died,” Corbett said.

Once the elder Corbett got interested in the restaurant business, he took it seriously.“After we’d been open five years, he sat me down to give me a performance evaluation. He was reading to me from this sheet of paper,‘Subject shows great signs of leadership, however subject …’ and I’m like, ‘Hey, I’m your son!’ This is the same man who loaned me money for a house and gave me an amortization schedule for the loan. Once I was two days late with a payment, and he sent me a letter saying ‘Perhaps our lives are very busy at times …’ ” Besides a firm grasp of fiscal management and budgets, the elder Corbett also instilled in his son an approach to personnel management that’s helped Dean Corbett recruit and retain an extraordinarily loyal

group of employees. As proud as he is of the quality of cuisine and service at his indisputably elite restaurants, Corbett seems to take just as much pleasure in the longevity of his crew. In a business where turnover is endemic, Corbett can point to the fact that at least 18 of his 33 employees have been with him for more than a decade. How does he hold on to his crew? “I just leave ’em alone,” he said with a laugh. “I try to set people up for success, give them all the tools they need, encourage them, and be there with them in the trenches. Everybody does their thing and has pride in their work.” In addition to that laissez-faire approach, Corbett goes out of his way to sustain a family atmosphere. This August, for instance, when Equus celebrates its 20th anniversary, he’ll close the restaurant for a week and take two dozen of his key employees (everyone who has been with him for five years or more) on vacation for a week of recreation in coastal South Carolina. Over the years, he’s taken his staff to Nassau and Gulf Shores, Alabama. Even if group junkets weren’t a custom, Corbett would likely be able to attract talent. “The philosophy is, if you surround yourself with excellent people, you’ll keep learning new things as well. At any given time there are three former executive chefs from great restaurants who are working our line, and that’s because we leave them alone and give them room to express themselves. Since we’ve been open, we’ve had four executive chefs here, and I’ve learned things from each of them. Dave Cuntz, our current chef, is enormously talented. When it comes to presentation, I’ve never worked with anybody better. I learn things from him every day. But it works both ways. He learns things from me about management, and math, and the business end of things.” Perhaps the key to Corbett’s success —and it could be a lesson to any chef and restaurant owner — is a balance of whimsical artistry and hardheaded business.“I want this to be fun,” he said. “For young chefs, especially, who are just getting into the profession, or just getting out of school, working here is kind of like a playpen. In our kitchen they have the freshest scallops, sushigrade tuna, fiddleheads, fresh morels, hundred-year-old balsamics, cheeses that you


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can’t find just anywhere, artisan specialty foods, dry-aged beef and that kind of thing. “And it’s a very open environment. Anybody who comes in here who wants to try something, if they want to run a special, we’ll talk it over and if it works out costwise, and if David and I approve it, we’ll let them try it. But they also get a dose of reality. We’ll analyze the food costs, and

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they’ll learn that you can’t create a dish that has $16 in food costs and sell it for $22. “To be successful in this business, you have to have two things: really good taste buds and a knack for math. I’m fortunate that I can taste a dish and immediately tell what it needs to kick up the flavor. But I can also look at a dish and calculate immediately whether it makes business sense.”

Equus’s veal sweetbreads with Kentucky oyster mushrooms and potato napoleon with Port wine essence and micro arugula, garnished with brown Turkish figs.

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joe castro English Grill 3 3 5 W. B ro a d w ay 583-1234

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There’s nothing better for me than cooking in the region where I grew up,” says Joe Castro, executive chef of the Brown Hotel. “When you come home and cook at home, you’re inspired beyond just making a move to a new job. I grew up eating country ham and fresh tomatoes, and coming home just raises the bar for me. I love that I’m home and cooking. It feels good. It’s what I love.” Joe Castro came home some 13 years ago to take over the culinary reins at the Brown Hotel—and its flagship restaurant, the English Grill— after spending the early part of his career working as far afield as Taiwan and Washington, D.C. In fact, just before returning to Louisville he was offered the sous chef position at the White House; but he decided he wanted to return to his roots. Those roots are in southern Indiana, where Castro and his brother John grew up on a Scottsburg farm, spending their summers developing an intimate relationship with produce. “My mom hated cookin’,” said Joe. “But she was a master gardener who loved to grow all kinds of crazy stuff, so as soon as we were old enough we worked in the garden every day. We came down to Bunton Seed every year and picked out the latest and greatest. I think that gives me a special appreciation for the food that grows in this region. It’s a thrill to get product locally, when it’s at its peak, when the sap is dripping out of the squash blossoms. Any chef is going to want to focus on that. “I love farming as much as I love cooking in a lot of ways, and I look forward to being an old chef, curing hams and bacon and bringin’ in my produce to chefs.”


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It’ll be a while before Castro qualifies as an old chef, though. He’s 43, and still an ambitious, energetic advocate for the power of Kentucky cuisine. “I’d like to do what I can to see the flavors of this region show through and develop a national reputation that goes beyond country ham, Bourbon and sorghum,” he said. “We’re every bit as powerful in terms of farming, fresh vegetables and meats as anyplace in the country. And with the things our suppliers are showing up with these days, I think we could compete with everything you read about California. This is a great farming area, and I don’t think people really understand that nationally.” If Castro has his way, they will—not only through the products of his own kitchen, but through the work of chefs

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he’s mentored over the years like Jerome Pope at the Coach Lamp, Nathan Carlson at Avalon, Kevin Rice at Mitchell’s Fish Market and Maureen Hartman at Café Fraiche. “I love having young chefs and students around,” said Castro, who got his own training in the field, working in kitchens after finishing a business degree at Transylvania University in Lexington. “It keeps you on your toes. The key to being successful in this business is they have to have the desire to give whatever it takes. You can look into almost anybody’s eyes and tell whether they’re there to learn or if they’re there because the student loans are mounting up on them. I look for the desire. I’ve always been driven by a desire to do this; it’s never been anything else. I like people like that around me.”

Then he unleashes a gardening metaphor: “I want to plant each person in fertile soil and help ’em along and see how they grow. That’s what I do. I’m not a taskmaster beatin’ it into people. I want people who have that desire built in. If it is, then we have healthy roots and a healthy planet at the end of the day. I want somebody who really, really wants to do it. The hours are long; you work when everybody else is playing. Unless you’ve got those kinds of things ready in your head and know that, you aren’t going to be happy doing it. But if somebody knows what they want, then off we go.”

Chef Joe Castro’s sautéed halibut with fried oysters, melted spinach and fennel topped with a tomato fondue.


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john castro W i n s t o n ’s 1 5 2 8 B a rd s t ow n R o a d 473-8765

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ong before fusion cuisine had turned American cooking on its head, John Castro, the executive chef of Winston’s at Sullivan University, and his brother Joe, who holds the same post at the Brown Hotel, were in the thick of it. Or perhaps more accurately, they were both in the thick of an unlikely postmodern juxtaposition of kitchen traditions that gave them a unique culinary perspective. “When you hear the word fusion,” says Chef John Castro, “that’s how I grew up.” Their Filipino father, Ignacio Castro, and their mother, Mary, from Meade County, Kentucky, settled in Scottsburg, Indiana, where

20 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

Ignacio practiced medicine. John Castro says their mother was an unwilling cook. “She used to say, ‘When I die, if I go to Hell, they’ll make me cook,’ ” he recalled with a chuckle. She was, however, a passionate gardener who “raised some crazy, amazing stuff.” Their father, on the other hand, loved to cook and entertain. He reveled in putting on Filipino-style pig roasts for 300 to 400 people, or hosting dinner parties for the small enclave of Filipino physicians who had found their way to the region. Menus in the Castro household ranged from exotic Japanese eggplant, bitter melon and yard-long beans grown in the family garden to regional favorites like country ham, grits and redeye gravy. “It was like worlds colliding,” Castro said. By age six, Castro was expressing himself in the kitchen, creating dishes like a home-grown Hot Brown by mixing cream of mushroom soup and sliced turkey. By junior high school, he was focused on cooking as a career.And as soon as he was old enough, he had his first kitchen job, as a lead cook at the Ramada Inn in Scottsburg. “They asked me, ‘What can you do?’ and by then I knew all the basics. I was lucky that the staff and owners were great people, and once they realized what I could do, they gave me


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free rein. Before long, word got around and we had people driving in from Columbus or Louisville. It just validated everything for me.” From those beginnings, Castro pursued formal training, first at the Northwood Institute at West Baden Springs, Indiana, and then at the Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park, New York. Then he spent time working his way up through the culinary ranks, serving as executive chef at Amato’s in Lexington, then following the path of a corporate chef, putting in stints in places as distant as Taiwan. “The cooking there is brilliant,” he said. “And the great thing about the hotel restaurants in Taiwan is that they’re really rooted in the street food of the people. On the streets, of course, it’s squat-and-eat, and in the hotels you have a sophisticated environment, but the food was so exciting. In those days, I felt like I’d been plugged into 220 volts; I didn’t require any sleep. Everything new just excited me.” Then it was back to Louisville, where Castro served as the last executive chef at Hasenour’s before becoming executive chef at Winston’s at Sullivan University, where every 11 to 13 weeks he greets an entirely new kitchen staff as the new semester’s class comes in. “People think moving from the kitchen to the classroom-kitchen might be like slowing down from 1,000 miles an hour to a slow pace,” said Castro. Wrong! Rather, he now must run a kitchen that maintains a high standard of culinary excellence to please a demanding clientele, while at the same time keeping pace with pedagogical rhythms that ensure that every student will get practical experience in the various kitchen stations.

Chef John Castro’s rice vermicelli with lobster, scallops and red peppers in a plum, red bean and chili elixir, finished with a cilantro and seawater emulsion.

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people and places profiles michael cunha & jim gerhardt Limestone 1 0 0 0 1 Fo re s t G re e n B l v d . 426-7477

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ichael Cunha grew up in New Bedford, Massachusetts, surrounded by the rich aromas of his mother’s French cooking as well as the seafood and Mediterranean-style comfort food created by his father’s Portuguese family. Jim Gerhardt grew up in Cincinnati, spending his Saturdays gawking at fresh produce, fresh sausage, smoked sturgeon and other delicacies at that city’s Findlay Market, and then sitting down to weekend meals of braised tongue, limburger cheese or kidney pie at his grandmother’s home. Both were fans of the television chefs of the era: Julia Child and Graham Kerr, the Galloping Gourmet. And both Cunha and Gerhardt realized early that they wanted to be chefs. If their paths diverged in the details, it wasn’t by much. For Gerhardt, who grew up in an era when the chef ’s profession wasn’t well established in the Midwest, just finding out about schools was an obstacle. “When I told my high school guidance counselor I wanted to get a formal degree in food, he really didn’t know anything about it,” he said. Fortunately a bit of research opened doors, and he found his way to the Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park, New York. For Cunha, the way was more direct: Johnson & Wales, another respected culinary school, was located nearby. Both chefs combined formal training with practical experience. “The Gourmet Room in the Terrace Hilton was one of Cincinnati’s three great restaurants, along with the Maisonette and Pigalle’s, back then,” recalled Gerhardt. “I went down there one day and waited three or four hours until the chef would see me. I just wouldn’t go away.” After an interview, Gerhardt landed a spot in the Hilton’s sandwich shop. He then earned a promotion to the Gourmet Room, a classical French restaurant, and within six months worked his way through all the stations in the kitchen before heading off to school. On his father’s advice, Gerhardt sought an interview at l’Auberge de Maison, a classical French restaurant in Marion, Massachusetts. He was hired on the spot

22 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

and spent the next five years putting in a punishing schedule of 80 to 90 hours a week at work and school. Gerhardt’s next career moves involved stints in Florida and the Virgin Islands, back to Cincinnati at the Maisonette, and at The Mansion on Turtle Creek in Dallas. After graduating from Johnson & Wales, Cunha traveled to California for what he calls “the most fun two weeks of my life.” But he didn’t fit into the California scene and returned home. One day he called a J&W classmate, John Plymale (now executive chef at Porcini), who had landed in Louisville. “I told him I was thinking about coming this way, and he said ‘Come on down.’ ” Within a few weeks, Cunha was cooking on the line at Dietrich’s. A few months later, in 1989, the Seelbach offered him a sous chef position. In 1992, Hilton Corporation, which operates the Seelbach, sent him to Austin, Texas, to run another kitchen in the chain. A couple of years later, it was back to the Seelbach, where he was involved in the expansion of the hotel ballroom. In August 1995, Medallion Hotels recruited Gerhardt to take over as executive chef and food and beverage director at the Seelbach. “They flew me in to look it over,” he said. “I just fell in love with the hotel. It had the historic Oakroom. They had just completed a convention center, the Medallion ballroom and a smaller ballroom, so it was a hotel that had three ballrooms with about 32,000 square feet of meeting place. It had everything I


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wanted: fine dining, a la carte, an in-house pastry shop and a convention center that could finance pretty much anything that you wanted to do. So all the components were in place. I was really looking for a fine dining room that I could kind of put my signature on, and that was the Oakroom. Medallion was a small company, they were growing, and they wanted someone they could just toss the keys to and let them run with it, so it was an extraordinary opportunity and things just clicked.” Things clicked between Gerhardt and Cunha, too. Cunha likens forming a restaurant partnership to a slow, careful courtship.“It’s a relationship that grows over time. When we met, we’d never heard of each other. But over years of working together you form a bond of trust. Knowing that you can trust someone is huge, and knowing that you can get along is huge. Our personalities are different, but really in a good way. Jim is more the host, and I’m more focused on what’s coming out of the kitchen. I know what we’re putting out, but I don’t always see the face of the customer.” Gerhardt echoes Cunha’s sentiments. “You have to have a partner who has a good work ethic, is talented and is trustworthy; and to find all three is rare. And you also have to find someone you can get along with, who has a shared vision in terms of the quality of the food and management style, and with Mike that happened. I guess it was kind of a surprise for me. When I came to the Seelbach, I didn’t know him from Adam’s housecat, but over time we came to know each other.” And over time, the pair turned the Oakroom into one of the nation’s elite restaurants, putting into place the systems and standards that would earn multiple AAA Five Diamond Awards. Cunha had always dreamed of opening his own restaurant. For Gerhardt, the idea was a youthful goal that had been deferred: “I always wanted to have a restaurant, but as odd as it sounds, I got sidetracked by the food side of things. Once I got started learning about different foods, I just kept going, and I really had no idea how diverse the range was. Moving around the country, and experiencing what Limestone’s braised beef short rib served atop collard greens, white beans and hot-water cornbread.

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different chefs were doing was a great experience, but after we earned that third Five Diamond Award, I think I realized that the next step was to open a place, and we started putting out some feelers.” Eventually, those feelers would lead the two chefs to their new restaurant, Limestone, which opened in September 2003 and earned immediate critical and popular acclaim. “People keep telling you it’s not a good time,” said Cunha. “They’ll tell you the economy’s not good, that

unemployment’s high. If you keep listening to people, you’ll never do it. Is it ever a good time to open a business? Probably not, but you have to decide that it’s a good time for you. And if you do it, do it right.” For Cunha and Gerhardt, doing it right seems second nature. In November 2004, the two were invited to cook at the James Beard House in New York City, a taste of national recognition that portends more great things to come.


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people and places profiles tim smith N ap a R i ve r G r i l l 3 9 3 8 D u p o n t C i rc l e 893-0141

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f Tim Smith ever decides to pursue a new career, he might have a future in motivational speaking, with his own inspiring career as the topic. Still on the youthful side at 30, Smith has risen from busser to executive chef at Napa River Grill, one of the most prestigious kitchens in Louisville ... with no formal culinary education. What’s the secret to Smith’s success? He credits the old-fashioned work ethic

BY MICHAEL L. JONES | PHOTOGRAPHS BY DAN DRY

that he brought to bear at Mama Grisanti’s Italian Restaurant, which once occupied the St. Matthews-area building that now houses Napa River Grill.“I’ve always had to understand that I didn’t know it all. I knew I had to learn it all—from the front door to the back of the house. Any job they gave me, I focused on it 100 percent. If they put me on the oven, I had to master it. I would try to be the greatest oven guy they ever had.” The story of the Grisanti family’s restaurants—and the many top chefs, restaurant hosts and owners they’ve produced—has been told often, even right here in Food & Dining. Smith’s story is one of them. But the stor y begins even before Smith, who grew up in nearby Jeffersontown, started as a busser at Mama Grisanti’s in 1990. In fact, he admits to an early interest in cooking.“When I was a kid

my mom bought me an Easy-Bake Oven, and I used to make little cakes,” he said. “I wanted to take one to school for Showand-Tell, but I was afraid the other boys would laugh at me.” After he graduated from duPont Manual High School in 1992, Smith became a utility player at Mama’s, splitting time between the front and the back of the house.“It started because they needed help in the kitchen during lunch,” he recalled. “I’d work in the kitchen during the day and in the front bussing tables at night.” By the time Grisanti’s gave way to Napa River Grill in 1999—a transformation that shifted its focus from family Italian-American to the upscale food and wine of California’s Napa Valley wine country—Smith had worked his way up to sous chef. During the transition, the


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business was closed for six months and most of the staff was laid off. But Smith, ever the jack-of-all-trades, found a way to stay on the job. “During the changeover I helped hang drywall and paint,” he said. “We gutted the whole building. I think there was $750,000 in renovations. I also spent time learning a lot of new styles and techniques: Italian, Asian, South American. Coming from a traditional Italian restaurant was a big change.” After 15 years, literally half of his life, spent working in the same building, Smith said he feels like he’s attended a great culinary school: “I have worked with some great chefs. I learned a lot from them all. Cooking is something you learn by doing. You don’t know how to peel potatoes until you’ve had to cut 50 potatoes.” Smith was named executive chef at Napa River Grill in 2003. The restaurant has an upscale, intimate feel that bespeaks quality. “We are off the beaten path,” Smith said. “If we were on Bardstown Road or Frankfort Avenue, we’d get twice the business. I like it the way it is. If you come here, this is where you wanted to eat. You don’t come here because some place down the street is full. This is a destination location.” Smith implements his cooking philosophy by trying to get customers to experience familiar dishes in new ways. “The thing about being a chef is judging people’s limits and getting them to go just outside of their box,” Smith said. “I’m not limited to any style.” One of the restaurant’s most popular dishes, for example, is Smith’s fennel- and coriander-crusted sea bass. Served over lobster dumplings, it looks almost like a soup with fish on top. “Sea bass is not your normal fish dish, but people in this city love it, ” Smith said. “Our dish is just something different that has proven to be really popular.” Smith said he changes eight to ten menu items every season. Most of the decisions on what to add or take off the bill of fare are based on the availability of seasonal vegetables and the cost to the restaurant … and its diners. “We don’t want to gouge customers,” Smith said. “We don’t want them to visit one day and have an entrée at a certain price, and then get charged a lot more for

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something else the next time they visit.We try to be consistent. A lot of things besides recipes go into this.” Smith is not the kind of executive chef who sits in his office all day. He estimates that he works 65 to 70 hours a week, much of that time spent cooking on the line. He usually gets to the restaurant around 8 a.m. to help with daily

Napa River Grill’s fennel-crusted sea bass with lobster dumplings, shiitake mushrooms, rice noodles, red peppers and leeks in a tomato-saffron consommé.

prep work. “I’m right there,” he said. “I don’t just carry around a clipboard. I think it helps morale for the other cooks to see me working.” www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 25


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people and places profiles charlie owen L e a n d e r ’s o n O a k 1 1 6 0 S . F i r s t S t re e t 569-6981

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ecome a cook, or join the Navy? That’s the simple decision that faced teen-aged Charlie Owen a decade ago. In some ways the chef ’s life resembles the military. Although different levels of danger are involved, both jobs require discipline and teamwork—and they provide the oppor tunity for travel and adventure. Owen, still youthful in appearance at 27, recalls that he spent the year after graduating from Ballard High School pretty much goofing off. Owen’s father soon tired of his son’s aimlessness and asked a simple question: “What would you like to do?” When the young man failed to come up with a satisfactory answer, his father suggested the Navy recruiting office. “That’s when I told him that I liked to cook,” Owen recalled with a chuckle. “When I was a child I liked to cook eggs. Then I became the master of fried bologna. In high school, I was always the guy asking, ‘Hey, man, are you hungry?’” Fair enough, his dad said, informing young Charlie that he would soon be attending cooking school. “Until that moment, I didn’t know such a thing existed.” It did indeed, and Sullivan University’s National Center for Hospitality Studies gave Owen a warm welcome. He graduated in 1998, and he credits the school with giving him the focus that helped him rise through the kitchen ranks quickly. Owen entered Sullivan at a time of transition for the school. Its restaurant, Winston’s, had just opened, and everything seemed topsy-turvy. But good ideas and plenty of hard work abounded. It was one of his best cooking experiences, Owen said, adding, “You’d think it would be just the opposite, but the other places I’ve worked were a lot more

26 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

structured than Winston’s was in the beginning. My instructor, David Moller, was unpredictable and really inspiring. It was a really creative time.” After he graduated, Owen felt a sense of wanderlust. Checking out the world beyond Louisville, he landed at Ajax Tavern in Boulder, Colorado, working for Chef Tobias Lowry. “Lowry told me that if I wanted to ever have his job I’d have to outwork my competition,” Owen said. “The other line

cooks came to work an hour early, so I came to work an hour and a half early. I had an hour commute each way.That’s the way it was.” Owen eventually worked his way up to sous chef at Ajax. But rather than staying on to drive the train, he veered onto a side track, working as a private chef for one of the families that opened the AutoZone automobile-supply chain. He recalls the experience as surreal, saying, “I cooked a banquet for 12 people every


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day.There were bodyguards and servants, Picassos on the wall, the whole deal.” That stint was short, as Owen’s sense of wanderlust was still strong. He moved on to Hawaii, enjoyed the beaches, met a girl he’d eventually bring home to Louisville, and worked his heart out at Mama’s Fish House. “I can’t think of a more amazing restaurant,” Owen said. “You could hear whales from the dining room. They had some of the best fish dishes I’ve ever seen. I worked as a line cook, and we must have had 1,000 customers a day.” A couple of years ago, Owen started feeling the call of home, and last year he came back with a splash as chef and part owner of the shor t-lived restaurant Steam, Fire and Ice. He described the closing of the restaurant after less than a year as one of the few low points in his career. But he was able to bring some of the staff from Steam with him when he joined Leander’s on Oak this year. Owen said the restaurant in Old Louisville is a good situation for him. It offers a stable atmosphere where he is free to work out his fascination with seafood. Leander’s has moved a lot of sea bass, but Owen said the breakout star dish is the restaurant’s Falls City Beer-battered cod.“I don’t know what it is about this city and Falls City beer,” He said.“I know there is a bar in Germantown where they sell a lot of it. Seafood is our niche. We do classic and eclectic preparations. The Falls City dish was supposed to be kind of a novelty thing, but sometimes it amounts to 10 percent of our sales.” It’s just one more surprise in the cooking life for Owen, who says he still feels as if he’s only at the beginning of a grand adventure. “I grew up in the country, where you caught a fish, cleaned it and cooked it,” he said. “I never thought this could be a real job.”

Chef Owen’s grilled Thai marinated salmon atop a bed of stir-fried rice noodles with basil and black pepper, garnished with crispy rice noodles.

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people and places profiles

tephen Young, Executive Chef at Artemisia, boasts quite a resume: When he ran the kitchen at Fourways Inn in Bermuda, the Scottishborn chef was featured twice on Discovery Channel’s Great Chefs of the World. He has prepared meals for dignitaries such as former Secretary of

Young, 40, is a pretty good chef for a failed soccer player. “I’ve been in the restaurant business as long as I can remember,” he said. “I come from a family of chefs.” The long, winding road that brought Young from Glasgow to Louisville began with his first cooking jobs at the Royal Automobile Club, the Central Hotel and the Grosvenor Hotel in Great Britain. In 1984 he moved on to Jersey in the Channel Islands, where he worked at the Grand Hotel and then at the Hotel de la Plage. His next stop was Bermuda, where he joined the staff of the Fourways Inn in 1986 and became its executive chef in 1995, elevating it to four-diamond status.

is a little laid back. I enjoy myself here, and there are a lot of good chefs around. I can see myself staying for a while.” Young said he has had to make some adjustments to placate the local palate. “I didn’t realize that they loved calamari so much in Louisville,” he said. “It is a big hit. I’m not used to cooking it so much. I’m also using more chipotles and hot peppers than I used to. I always try to use as many local ingredients as possible. Otherwise, the food is still the same as I cooked in Bermuda.” His biggest hit at Artemisia has been a rack of lamb with espresso coffee sauce, a popular dish that he featured for a year and a half before retiring it for a while. “That went down fantastic,” he said. “I

State Colin Powell, former President George H. Bush and former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. So we suspect Young is kidding when he claims that cooking is only his second passion. One call from his beloved Glasgow Rangers, Young swears, and he would rip off his apron for good. “I’m a huge soccer fan. I grew up following the Rangers. I always dreamed about playing for them, but the manager of the team never gave me a call. I’m still waiting.”

But he says working in such a highpressure atmosphere eventually took its toll. “Talk about fresh seafood … To get the special for the day, I’d ask the fisherman what he caught today and he’d just check to see what he had on the line. … After 13 years in Bermuda, I needed a little bit of a change.” From Bermuda to Louisville? That’s a change, all right. Young isn’t sure what attracted him to the River City, but he says it has offered him the respite he needed.“It

might have to put it back on because I get so many requests for it.” In the interest of keeping things fun, Young often creates offbeat “theme nights” at Artemisia. Each month, for example, the restaurant shows a movie on its patio, and Young comes up with a three-course meal to fit. For the movie Chocolat, for instance, he fashioned a chocolate pasta with scallops. “I usually look for some dish in the movie to prepare or do something from

stephen young Artemisia 6 2 0 E . M a r ke t S t re e t 583-4177

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the country the movie is from, be it Italian or French. Mostly Martha is a German film, so I made some German dishes that night.” Remembering his own Scottish roots, Young recently presented a tribute to the poet Robert Burns with a menu including haggis, the traditional Scottish meat pudding made of lamb organ meat and oatmeal, customarily cooked in the

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lamb’s stomach. He hopes to make the Burns Night dinner an annual tradition to mark the poet’s January birthday. Every Tuesday, Artemisia offers a sixcourse Chef ’s Table dinner—$55 with wine, $40 without—often featuring such creative repasts as oyster tempura with a Vietnamese dipping sauce, Tasmanian ocean trout with lobster ravioli, and red leek salad. “Since I do it every week I try

Chef Stephen Young’s oven-roasted halibut with a clam and pancetta stew and lobster tortellini, finished with an emulsion of red pepper and North African harissa.

to come up with a fresh pasta or ravioli dish,” he said in his distinctive Scottish burr.“I try to keep it interesting for diners and myself.” www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 29


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people and places profiles david salvo & chris gibson Fusion 1 6 0 5 S t o r y Ave n u e 582-1801

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avid Salvo and Chris Gibson might strike you as an odd couple in the tradition of great comedy teams like Abbott and Costello or Laurel and Hardy: Even with his partner’s chef hat making up some of the difference, the husky Gibson towers over the compact, rail-thin Salvo. Despite their different sizes, though, when it comes to Fusion restaurant the two are like twins. After less than a year in business, the co-owners and chefs of Fusion (1605 Story Avenue) are delighted, but not surprised, that their restaurant is riding a popularity wave. “I’ve been carrying this concept in my head for about five years,” said Gibson, 29.“Nothing about the restaurant side surprises me,” Salvo, 28, added. “The food sells itself.” The chefs attribute Fusion’s concept to Los Angeles celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck, who helped popularize the cooking style that combines techniques from disparate cultures into a blended cuisine. “He might take from Asian, Moroccan and African cuisine to form a singular dish,” Gibson said. He offers Fusion’s Anasazi

salmon is an example.The salmon is dusted in spices from Central America and South America, served over American Indian roasted corn cakes, and given a French accent with sautéed spinach and mushrooms. The Fusion style may appeal to Gibson because he got his culinary education on the road, having been all but born with a knife in his hand. Gibson’s mother managed country clubs all over the country, and when most kids his age were out playing soccer, Gibson was slicing vegetables. “My mom managed the Mayfair in Alabama and the Paducah Country Club, among others,” Gibson said. “Each place I would end up working in the kitchen. By the time I was 15, I was an old hand at cooking.” Gibson soon graduated to running kitchens himself. He was sous chef at 160 South in Birmingham, one of only two four-star restaurants in Alabama at the time he worked there, and then chef at Pacific Pearl in Lexington, Kentucky. He met Salvo when he came to Louisville’s Bluegrass Brewing Company in 2003.“He was my sous chef and we hit it off,” Gibson said. “I felt like he was someone I could go into business with.” Salvo has worked his way up to chef from the bottom rung of the kitchen ladder. He started out washing dishes for Chef John Gray at Café on Romany in Lexington. Eventually he became Gray’s sous chef at Portofino in Lexington before joining Gibson at the BBC. “I learned so much from John Gray,” Salvo said. “I credit his tutoring for a lot of what we’ve achieved. I felt prepared for this.” Since Fusion opened last November, Gibson said, it has built a regular dinner clientele; the restaurant added lunch hours in


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January. After operating very briefly on Baxter Avenue, Fusion quickly moved to its current home, which had housed the Greek Paradise Café and several shortlived predecessors and was long the home of Min’s Cafeteria, affectionately nicknamed “Dirty Min’s.” Gibson said the location has housed a restaurant continuously for 70 years. In an unusual division of responsibility, Salvo and Gibson share the duty of running the front and back of the house at Fusion. Besides cooking, Salvo handles the waitstaff and the bar. “It just adds an extra layer of responsibility to what I was already doing,” he said.“The big difference is that I’m not just responsible for keeping track of people’s hours. As the owner, I’m responsible for making sure that these people have a job to come to.That’s a bit different.” On the other hand, Gibson said running the kitchen has been an easy transition for him. “We have day and night managers and about a dozen other employees,” he said. “The hard thing is not having as many employees as I’m used to having. I’ve worked at places with way bigger staffs.” Salvo and Gibson said they have had some surprises in discovering what appeals to their customers’ tastes. For instance, every time Gibson tries to take the coconut fried lobster tail off the menu, a chorus of complaints prompts him to put it back on. A relatively simple dish, it’s a split lobster tail coated with sweet coconut sauce and served over a ricenoodle salad. “We were thinking it might make a spring-summer dish,” he said, “but it really took off.” Fusion is still evolving. Gibson said the co-owners plan to add a patio for summer. And even if the coconut lobster stays, there will be some menu changes. The only thing that’s sure to stay, he said, is the practice of displaying the works of local artists. Fusion Restaurant should reflect its name, Gibson said. “The style is high energy and atmospheric. ’Kinetic’ is the way to describe it.”

OPPOSITE PAGE: Fusion’s tournedos etouffée. Twin pan-seared medallions of beef served with roasted garlic mashed potatoes and a mixture of crawfish, peppers and onions in a rich Cajun red-wine demi-glace.

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clay wallace Café Lou Lou 1 8 0 0 Fr a n k f o r t Ave nu e 893-7776

HOT PROSPECT

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afé Lou Lou stands for Louisville and Louisiana. For a while, this was also an apt description of Chef Clay Wallace, the owner of this popular new Clifton spot. Wallace returned home to Louisville two years ago after spending several years in New Orleans. But throughout his time away, Wallace says, he knew he was gaining valuable knowledge for his return home. “My plan was always to come back to Louisville,” he said. “My wife and I didn’t want to raise kids in New Orleans. At 31, I want to be where I plan to stay for the rest of my life.” Wallace, who grew up in the Crescent Hill area of Louisville, got his start in the restaurant business making salads at Café Metro and Uptown Café. He worked his way up the kitchen ranks at the two adjacent cafés, and then left for New Orleans in 1997 to take a job as chef at the Mystic Café.Within a year, he bought a 10 percent stake in the café. Eventually Wallace expanded his holdings until he was the sole owner. “I met this doctor through the restaurant who was looking for an investment opportunity,” Wallace explained. “This doctor bought out the original owners.We were partners. Over the next five years, I bought him out. Basically, I didn’t make a dime for five years.When you have no education and no money, a bank is not going to give you a loan, so that’s the way I had to do it.” The early stages at the Mystic Café were not easy going. “Cooking is the easiest part of running a restaurant,” he said.“The hardest part is getting a good staff. If you find someone good, pay them or you’ll lose them. It’s about being organized.” Sometimes his youth worked against him, too, because the waiters and cooks he hired were usually his contemporaries. “When I owned the Mystic Café, it was trial and error,” he said. “There were a novel’s worth of lessons. I learned that you have to be nice to your staff, but you can’t let it slide into friendship. Because when you become friends, then maybe they don’t think it is a big deal if they come in 20 minutes late.” Wallace continued, “A lot of people don’t realize that this is my life; this is how I plan to feed my kids. It is where they work for a few hours to make $100. If I close, they go down the street to get a job at the next restaurant.” Two years ago, Wallace and his wife Stephanie, an artist by avocation who works as a nurse at Baptist East, decided it was time to come home. “I missed Louisville from the moment I left it,” Wallace said. “It’s got great music and great food. I missed my sister and her kids. It was just time.” Wallace knew he wanted to return to Louisville and he knew he wanted to open a new restaurant, but it took him a while to decide where. A friend in real estate tried to steer him toward lower Frankfor t Avenue. Wallace resisted. He looked at restaurant-saturated Bardstown Road and East Market Street, but nothing seemed right. Finally, he took a closer look at 1800 Frankfort Avenue, now the address that Café Lou Lou calls home. “He finally convinced me that this part of Frankfort Avenue was coming alive,” Wallace said.“I’ve been very happy here. It was a club called the Black Cat. We did all of the construction ourselves in five weeks. I was worried about the on-street parking at first, but luckily people seem happy to park and walk.”


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Café Lou Lou specializes in Mediterranean food, which Wallace calls a misunderstood concept in Louisville: It is not just gyros and Greek salads. Wallace is most proud of his gourmet pizzas and wide array of pastas. The Mediterranean pizza, for example, features mozzarella cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, Kalamata olives, roasted eggplant, roasted garlic, feta cheese, capers, and marinara sauce. Another popular dish, pasta carbonara, features chicken, fresh mushrooms, green onions and bacon in a Parmesan cream sauce over linguine. “We sold a ton of pizza in New Orleans,” Wallace said. “But I think this city really loves pasta. Everything is made from scratch. There is really nothing like this in town.There are not a lot of middle-of-theroad restaurants where you can spend $8 for a meal and still have leftovers.” The next evolution for Café Lou Lou is toward a more health-conscious menu. Since starting a diet himself, Wallace said, he has become more aware of the limited

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choices offered to vegetarian diners and those watching their weight. “It is hard to eat healthy nowadays,” he said. “You can only eat so many salads. I’ve been working on some creative options I’m going to unveil soon.” In addition to working at his restaurant, Wallace said, he spends a lot of time getting reacquainted with family and friends. He said many of them find it strange that he spends a lot of time cooking when he’s not at the restaurant. But cooking is like breathing to him. “If you have it in your heart to be a chef, you’ll be a chef no matter what,” Wallace said. “Just like my wife expresses herself with her art, this is how I express myself.” F&D

Café Lou Lou’s Meze plate. Hummus, Plaki (a mixture of pinto beans, carrots, garlic, paprika and cayenne), Muhamarra (tomato and chili paste with walnuts, feta cheese and mint), sautéed carrots with garlic yogurt, roasted red peppers, feta cheese and pita bread.

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recipes louisville’s restaurant favorites

BY ROBIN GARR | PHOTOS BY DAN DRY

Louisville’s Own

The Hot Brown, the famous local concoction with the name that gives visitors pause, jostles for position with Derby-Pie® as the dish that most clearly utters the word “Louisville.” Both the saucy turkey-and-bacon sandwich and the nutty chocolate pie stand tall as culinary symbols of our fair city, and both trace a local heritage that goes back for generations. But there’s one critical difference between them: Come up with your own version of Derby-Pie and put it on the menu, and a squadron of lawyers will come after you with bench warrants and restraining orders. Kern’s Kitchen, the commercial

baker and copyright holder, owns the name “Derby-Pie” and defends it aggressively. But seek to put a Hot Brown on your bill of fare, and the chefs at the Brown Hotel will greet you with a smile, offer you the recipe, and provide a few helpful hints to help you get it just right. “It’s the kind of publicity money can’t buy,” said Joe Castro, the Brown’s executive chef. Staff at the 80-year-old hotel at Fourth and Broadway, now a property of the Camberley chain, get requests for the recipe all year ’round, Castro said, to the


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extent that they offer printed copies and a detailed procedure on the hotel’s website, www.brownhotel.com. “It’s continuous,” he said with a laugh. “It definitely picks up four to five months before Derby, but we get it all year long.” Indeed, a crew from cable television’s Travel Channel was in town as we went to press, spending a blustery March Saturday in the Brown’s English Grill filming the classic procedure. The story has been told so many times, surely you know it by now: Back in the Roaring Twenties, hotel Chef Fred Schmidt came up with an innovative creation to satisfy hungry guests who sought a midnight snack after the hotel’s nightly dinner dances. As an alternative to ham and eggs, the chef topped a little toast with a slice of turkey (then still mostly known as a holiday treat), a dollop of cheesy Mornay sauce and a couple of strips of bacon. A new dish was born, and it has been popular ever since. “People like the dish,” Castro said. “It’s well put-together, it goes down easy. Anything that’s put together that well has some staying power.” Most local restaurants, and home chefs with a hankering for a taste of this Louisville treat, stick pretty closely to the original. But variations abound, including a pointed if friendly jab from Castro’s brother John, executive chef at Winston’s at Sullivan University, who created a seafood-based Not Brown. “That rascal,” Joe Castro said with a laugh. But the Hot Brown’s classic simplicity does lend itself to variations, Joe Castro said. Want it vegetarian? “It’s an open-face sandwich,” he said.“You could go with tofu, you could go with any selection of mushrooms, a veggie that doesn’t add a dominating flavor. I’ve seen it done with country ham—I love country ham on everything. I’ve seen peaches,” he said and then paused, trying to imagine such a thing. “A little braised peach hanging next to all that, it might work.” Still, he said,“When you come in here, we want to give you the real tradition.” Castro checked the recipe on the hotel website and declared it the real thing, although he added a tweak or two that the editors apparently overlooked. Here’s his official version, ready to fashion at home for a lazy Sunday or Derby brunch. F&D

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The Brown Hotel’s Hot Brown (SERVES FOUR) 4 ounces butter 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour 3 cups milk 1 egg 6 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese 1 ounce heavy cream (optional) Salt Pepper 8 to 12 slices of roast turkey 8 slices of good quality white bread Extra grated Parmesan for topping 8 strips of cooked bacon

1 2

1. The process goes fast, so have all your ingredients measured and ready before you start. 2. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour all at once, whisking to make a thick roux. Add the milk, whisking to mix it in well. Stir in the Parmesan cheese. Reduce heat to low. 3. Whisk the egg lightly in a cup or small bowl. Stir in a little of the hot sauce to “temper” the egg so it won’t scramble when you add it to the sauce. When the egg is well mixed with a little of the sauce, whisk this combination into the saucepan. Heat the sauce briefly until it becomes smooth and thick, taking care not to let it come to a boil. Remove from heat. If you’re using heavy cream, whip it and then fold it into the sauce gently. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste. 4. For each Hot Brown, place two slices of toast on a flameproof dish such as a metal plate. Put one or two slices of turkey on each piece of toast. Pour a generous amount of sauce over each and sprinkle with grated Parmesan. Place the dish under a broiler until the sauce is bubbly and speckled brown. Remove from broiler, cross two pieces of bacon on top of the dish, and serve immediately.

3 4

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BY JERRY SLATER

Bou rb o n C oc k t a i l s to

T

36 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

was concocted as a hangover helper, a little hair of the dog combined with vitamin C and bitters for the stomach. The Manhattan (a combination of Bourbon, sweet vermouth and bitters) can be described as a darker and more sophisticated older sister of the Martini, especially when mixed with a premium Vermouth like Vya from California. But God forbid you order a Manhattan on the East Coast without calling for a specific brand of booze—you’ll end up with Canadian whiskey. Both the Manhattan and the Old-fashioned are distinguished by the way

A Louisville original, the Old-fashioned

PHOTO BY DAN DRY

he mint julep: As much a part of Kentucky Derby tradition as beautiful horses, fast women and big hats. It is arguably the best-known Bourbon cocktail, if for no other reason than that all eyes look to Louisville on the first Saturday in May. Does fame denote quality? Some say they only indulge in the julep once a year. Others laugh at the idea of anyone but out-of-towners partaking. I go to great lengths to make my mint julep: Beginning with true Bluegrass mint, infusing the mint in a simple sugar syrup, and crushing the ice in a towel, not a machine, to get an even crush that packs in tight. This task is usually reserved for the spring, and I can only sip one or two before I revert to enjoying straight Bourbon with no more adornment than a cube of ice or two. When it comes down to it, that’s how most folks think Bourbon should be enjoyed: Pure, unadulterated and served neat or maybe on a few rocks. This is especially true of the Bourbon connoisseur, who may spend $40 to $200 or more on a single bottle priced for its age or rarity. I by no means advocate using a pricey tipple like Jim Beam Distiller’s Masterpiece in a signature julep, as one misguided local restaurateur did in a submission to Playboy a few years back. But I will stipulate that a new generation of bartenders is breaking taboo to use Bourbon as a mixer these days, with surprising results. Before we go there, let’s step backward for a moment and reflect on some other old standards of Bourbon mixology. The mint julep may win the popularity race by a nose—perhaps on the basis of sheer volume when the crowds descend in May—but Louisvillians are more likely to answer the Bourbon cocktail question with a Manhattan or an Old-fashioned. Local legend has it that the Oldfashioned (Bourbon mixed with a muddled blend of orange, cherry, sugar and bitters) was created at Louisville’s Pendennis Club. One version of the story suggests it

they carry through the flavor of their basic liquor. The Bourbon doesn’t blend into a new, interesting creation as an integrated component, but rather retains its status as a singular taste highlighted by flavor accents. Adding vermouth, bitters, orange and cherries is like adding salt to an already seasoned dish. In contrast, the Bourbonberry (a mixture of vanilla-infused Van Winkle 10year-old Bourbon shaken with Krupnik Honey Vodka, blackberry, green-apple puree, fresh lemon juice and brown sugar, served over crushed ice and laced with


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Crème de Myrtille) is not your father’s Oldsmobile. This recipe, from the brash young bartenders at London’s Cobden Club, reads like heresy here in the Commonwealth, but it would fit in perfectly at Red Lounge. Unbridled by staunch notions of tradition, the London set makes up drinks like the Grape Crush (Woodford Reserve Bourbon, apple puree, lychee puree, lychee liqueur and green apple liqueur, muddled with white grapes, fresh lime, brown sugar and fresh mint, all served over crushed ice with a hint of cinnamon liqueur). If you think Pappy Van Winkle is rolling over in his grave about this, think again. I came across these cocktails when Julian and Preston Van Winkle, the son and grandson of the famed Pappy, graciously brought one of the Cobden Club mixologists to Louisville to show local bartenders their specialties. Julian told me he had very traditional attitudes about Bourbon before he and Preston stumbled upon these cocktails, but after seeing the time and care that go into them—and experiencing the taste—he felt he had to share the excitement with others. But you don’t have to go to London to find cocktail menus that reflect a similar commitment to tradition and adventure. Right in our own backyard, the Seelbach and the Galt House pride themselves on some of the largest collections of Bourbon in the country. At Lilly’s, General Manager Cassandra Hobbic makes her own bitters to shake with a Van Winkle 13-year-old in the house Manhattan. And at Park Place on Main, I take our own selection of Woodford Reserve and shake it with sweet ginger puree, mango nectar, orange juice, tamarind paste and star anise to make a Ganges Delta cocktail, emphasizing the relationship between America’s Mississippi River delta, known for its whiskey juke joints, and the fruit and spice flavors of the similarly steamy climate of the Indian subcontinent. The only rule you really need to remember is this: Appreciate our native nectar the way you like it. After dinner, I might take my Elijah Craig 18-year-old Bourbon neat, in a snifter, enjoying all of its butterscotch aromas. But I am just as likely to start stirring in fresh peaches, ginger, amaretto and peach schnapps, emphasizing or contrasting its own taste characteristics, for a cocktail party starter. In the new cocktail culture, it’s good to be bold. F&D www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 37


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BY ROBIN GARR

great wine values under

G

38 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

By and large, in wine as with any luxury product, these goodies don’t come at a discount. The finest wines are made from the scarcest grapes and handled by the most respected wine makers. Those factors, coupled with consumer demand, push prices up. But the ratio between price and quality in wine isn’t always linear. If you’re willing to spend $10 to $15 or so for a bottle in a wine shop (expect to pay roughly double that for restaurant service), you can drink very well if you pick and choose. A couple of tips to assist in your quest: Get out of the race for “trophies.” Pass by the sought-after bottles that the critics embrace, choosing instead the road less taken. Experiment with unfamiliar wine regions: Sonoma, not Napa; Alsace or the Loire, not Bordeaux or Burgundy; Sicily, not Tuscany. Or branch out to entirely offbeat regions from New York’s Finger Lakes to Bulgaria. Try the less popular but often intriguing wine grape varieties: Switch from Chardonnay to Chenin Blanc, from Merlot to Mondeuse, and you’ll broaden your wine experience while saving a few bucks. Here’s a quick shopping list with a dozen wines of top value, all purchased at

Louisville wine shops in recent months.Try a few of these and you’ll find that it’s possible to drink like a millionaire without having to mortgage the house. F&D

PHOTO BY DAN DRY

reat wine is rarely cheap.The most expensive standard bottle of wine ever sold, a 1787 Chateau Lafite originally bottled for Thomas Jefferson, sold at auction at Christie’s in London in 1985 for a cool $160,000. The price was based largely on its historical value, of course; the wine was too old to be drinkable. But even modern wines can have steep prices. In 2001, a seven-bottle lot of 1978 Le Montrachet, a rare but eminently quaffable white Burgundy, went under the hammer at Sotheby’s for $23,929 per bottle— which is pretty close to, say, the sticker price for a new minivan large enough to hold several cases of wine. Even in the price range where most of us travel, you’ll have little difficulty finding a good selection of quality wines at your local wine shop that sell for $50 and up, with some even crossing into threefigure territory. Viewed from this crass perspective, it almost seems as if really fine wine is reserved for the rich—or for those who’ve had an exceptionally good day at Churchill Downs. So let’s look at the flip side: Can cheap wine ever be great? Bear in mind that 99 percent of all the wine made in the world is intended to be sold for $10 or less, and much of it comes in jugs and boxes from industrial-style wine assembly lines that produce a palatable but rarely exciting beverage. So what do “connoisseurs” look for in a pricey wine? In a few words, a wine that wins the critics’ top rating points will show no serious flaws and no “off ” aromas or flavors. It will be “balanced,” with sufficient acidity (tartness) to provide an underlying structure for fresh fruit. It will be subtle and complex, teasing the nose and palate with layers of aroma and flavor that seem to open up in stages like a budding flower. It will be lasting, with flavors that linger pleasantly for a perceptible time after you swallow. These may seem like minor, even nitpicky, points—but the difference between a quality wine and a mass-market quaffer is like the difference between a song and a symphony.

Feudi San Gregorio 2002 Fiano di Avellino ($14.99) - Full-bodied white from Southern Italy. Coriole 2003 McLaren Vale Chenin Blanc ($14.00) - A delicious South Australian alternative to Chardonnay. Mantlerhof 2000 Kremstal Grüner Veltliner Spiegel ($13.99) - From the banks of the Blue Danube in Austria, a crisp, food-friendly white. Gruet Blanc de Noirs Brut ($13.99) - Pay no attention to the French name … this delicious Champagne-style bubbly comes from New Mexico. Plantagenet 2003 Mount Barker Riesling ($13.99) - Another crisp, lime-scented white from Australia. Mas de Gourgonnier 2002 Les Baux de Provence ($12.99) - A hearty organic red from Provence. Joseph Phelps 2001 California “Pastiche” ($11.99) - A robust blend of red grapes from a respected Golden State producer. Laurel Glen 2002 REDS California Red Wine ($9.99) - From another of California’s top wineries, a bargain-priced favorite. Hugues Beaulieu 2003 Coteaux du Languedoc Picpoul de Pinet ($8.99) - Crisp, tart and fresh, this white from Southern France is perfect for summer sipping. 2 Brothers 2003 Colchagua “Big Tattoo Red” ($8.49) - A luscious red wine from Chile, and part of the proceeds benefits breast cancer charities. San Telmo 2003 Mendoza Malbec ($7.49) - Argentina’s go-to red grape, from vineyards on the slopes of the Andes. Kavaklidere 2002 “Yakut” Oküzgözü d’Elazig ($4.99) - We wrap up the bargainbasement end of our list with a truly offbeat red wine from … Turkey.


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New Spring Hours

Sunday 5 pm – 10 pm Monday – Thursday 5 pm – 11 pm Friday & Saturday 5 pm – 1 am Reservations Available: Any size Sunday – Thursday / 6 or more Friday & Saturday

1765 Mellwood Ave. at the corner of Brownsboro Rd.

897-0070 www.landnwinebarandbistro.com


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BY ROGER A. BAYLOR

d i s c o v e r i n g

in Bruges

A

ccording to all the reports we had heard, our quartet of American beer hunters was for tunate just to find seats in the jammed front room of ’t Brugs Beertje (“the Little Bruges Bear”), a specialty beer café on the narrow lane called Kemelstraat in delicious Bruges, Belgium. We had made a visit to the Bear an absolute priority of our 1995 trip.The café proved to be as absurdly tiny as its reputation foretold, with just four rickety wooden stools at the short bar; but what it lacked in floor space it more than made up for with an enormous beer list. Granted, there were only a half-dozen drafts. However, the bottled beer menu ran for page after page, subdivided by the province of each beer’s origin and noting each one’s particular style. There were ruddy brown ales from East Flanders and tart reds from West Flanders; earthy Saisons and individualistic Wallonian ales from the French-speaking southeast; funky spontaneously-fermented Gueuzes and citrusy Wits; Trappist ales and the Abbey styles that mimic them; and, as a bonus, stored in endless rows behind the bar, signature glassware so most of the 200 bottled choices could be served in their own proper vessels. The walls were plastered with antique metal beer signs and associated breweriana; and when the noise of conversation ebbed, soothing classical music could be heard in the background. Staggered by the options, I selected Rochefort 10, widely considered the finest of all Trappist ales. It was unavailable in the Louisville area at the time, and remains rare today. Our understated but attentive server, Luc, who we came to know well, shook his head sadly. Suddenly I was gripped with fear that the café’s stock of Rochefort was depleted. Luc asked, “Will you be having more than one beer this evening?” “Yes, of course,” I replied. 40 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

“Then I cannot serve you the Rochefort.You will not be able to taste the beers that come after it. You must save it for the end.” Learning is always fun when good teachers are close by. I heeded Luc’s advice, and the Rochefort 10, saved for the end of our beer-drinking session, proved to be suitably rich and dark; cosmic, revelatory and unconditional. As befits a nation that seeks to unite contrasting populations of Flemings and Walloons—Dutch and French speakers— Belgium often is a study in opposites. The small North European country famously suffered as victim during two World Wars, even as it had abused the then-Belgian Congo as a colonial power. It has produced the inventor of the saxophone, without whom there could have been no Coltrane; but it also gave birth to the inane action star Jean-Claude Van Damme. Belgium has achieved culinary acclaim. Its simple street corner kiosks offer up potatoes perfectly deep-fried as nowhere else and accompanied with any imaginable

sauce but ketchup; its classic Continental restaurants serve escargot, endives, the memorable Carbonade Flamande stew of beef and beer, and steaming pots of fresh mussels. Perhaps most important to beer lovers, Belgium supports the most crazily diverse and creative brewing culture to be found in Europe, and it also hosts the world’s largest mass-market lager brewing conglomerate: AmBev, maker of Stella Artois, which regrettably is the only local beer that most American visitors to Belgium will try. Since that first night of coursework at ’t Brugs Beertje, I’ve been back to Belgium seven times. During these priceless idylls I have traversed the country by bus, train, automobile and best of all, by bicycle. From the dikes, canals and well-ordered brick homes of Flanders to the woods and hills of the Ardennes, I’ve enjoyed food and drink in industrial cities and countryside villages. One essential aspect of the Belgian beer drinking experience stands out in my mind:

THE

INSTITUTION OF THE CAFÉ

As Europe’s beer drinking venues go, Belgian cafés surely are the least appreciated. While most Americans grasp the traditional beer hall regimen offered by Bavarians, and understand the basic format Bruges, Belgium, is known for its canals, its quaint streetscape and, of course, for its delicious beers.


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of the Anglo-Irish public house, few have been exposed to the subtle wonders of the Belgian café. Like bars and pubs everywhere, Belgian cafés are meeting places for friends and serve as extended living rooms for locals. Unlike bars and pubs elsewhere, it’s usually possible to sample at least a halfdozen markedly different beer styles (not beer “brands”) in a typical Belgian café, even the ones that don’t emphasize beer. Order a spritzy, deceptive Duvel (“Devil”) or a fruit-infused Lindemans, and it will come in a glass designed expressly for it. Sometimes the glasses are little more than advertising vehicles, but often the shape and design of the glass is intended to complement and enhance the beer, such as the wide-rimmed goblet that allows plenty of room for the complex scents of aromatic Trappist and Abbeystyle ales like Chimay, Orval or Corsendonk to waft up. A small portion of peanuts or crunchy snacks, and sometimes even cheese cubes or herring slices, will come free of charge with each beer order at most Belgian cafés.When the time comes for something a bit more substantial, you’ll generally be given a menu card and cautioned that there are no “meals,” only “snacks.” But these “snacks” can be substantial, ranging from bread, sausage plates and cheese platters (don’t forget the celery salt) to grilled sandwiches like the ubiquitous Croque Monsieur (ham and cheese) and Croque Madame (the same with a fried egg on top), all the way to spaghetti and lasagna. These heavy snacks suffice as meals more often than not, especially if the café’s beer list keeps the enthusiast rooted to his seat. If you can’t make it to Belgium right now, at least some of this reverie can be duplicated at home. First and foremost, just say “no” to Stella Ar tois. Procure a copy of Tim Webb’s Good Beer Guide to Belgium & Holland, which local booksellers can order for you. Use Webb’s text as an aid while you prowl the shelves of area retailers in your quest for classic Belgian ale styles. Meanwhile, see if there’s glassware for sale. Your collection doesn’t need to be as comprehensive as the glass shelf at a Belgian café: A basic arsenal of goblets and flutes will suffice. Add a bowl of peanuts, and you’re ready. The herring are optional. F&D www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 41


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BY DAVID LANGE

t h e

I

t happens to everyone: You walk into your favorite coffee shop and peruse the menu board, but it appears to be written in a foreign language. Then you overhear people ordering coffee drinks, and your mind overloads with the lingo of the coffee mecca. “I’ll have a grande, double-shot, wet, skinny cappuccino on a leash.” Huh? “Make mine a venti, foamless, half-caf soy latte with wings.” What!? Even a plain-andsimple cup of coffee takes on new meaning when it’s ordered as a “short, COD, cake in a cup … and be sure to shock it.” Being a coffee shop novice can be intimidating, even embarrassing, now that the coffee culture has taken root in Louisville’s neighborhoods. So how does one emulate Frasier and Niles Crane in mastering the essential demeanor for java junkies and coffee gurus in the making? How can you appear savvy to your friends and make a statement about your knowledge of coffee-ordering rituals? It’s simple: Learn the lingo! In other words, it’s not enough to drink the drink— you have to talk the talk. Let’s star t with the fundamental building block of today’s popular coffee drinks, espresso. The word “espresso” (never “expresso”) is often wrongly construed as a definition for darkness of roast, fineness of grind, a specific blend of coffees, or even as if Espresso were a country where coffee is grown! In fact, espresso is strong coffee that’s brewed by forcing water through darkly roasted, finely ground coffee beans, one small-cupsize “shot” at a time. From this basic drink springs all the other caffeinated concoctions that have enriched our coffee culture. Identifying espresso starts you on the way to your education in the language of

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the coffee house. Espresso can be ordered as a single or a double (one shot or two). Add a drop of foamed milk and it becomes a macchiato—“marked” with a swirl of white. Add about 6 ounces of steaming water and it becomes an Americano. To move up the ladder, learning a little Italian as you climb, ask for your espresso con panna—topped with a dollop of whipped cream.This completes Lesson No. 1. Now it’s time to move on to more exotic elixirs. Without a doubt, cappuccino is among the most popular espresso-based drinks. Cappuccino takes its name from the coffee-colored hoods that Capuchin

friars wear. It’s a romantic marriage of steaming espresso topped with a velvety cap of foamed milk. You can modify this basic recipe to your liking by changing the type of milk, adding flavored Italian syrups or boosting its octane with multiple espresso shots. In the United States, we savor this drink all day—in contrast with the norm in Italy, where cappuccino is a breakfast beverage never consumed after 11 a.m. Do not confuse honest cappuccino with the “bubbacino” product sold at convenience stores. Cappuccino is not made from a powder. It is not permeated with sugar. And it definitely doesn’t spew from the spout of a vending machine.


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For those just beginning to venture down the espresso path, I recommend starting your journey with a caffe latte. This familiar drink is prepared by adding steamed, not foamed, milk to a shot of espresso. This gentle drink offers an easy introduction to the flavor profile of espresso-based drinks. Like the cappuccino, the latte can be modified by using different milks or flavored syrups. Or, for a real treat, add some chocolate to create caffe mocha, a truly decadent potion. One local coffee emporium features a double-tall mocha made with whole milk and topped with extra whipped cream, appropriately named “Thunder Thighs.” A word of caution if you travel to Italy:“Latte” is the Italian word for “milk.” When you stroll into a quaint Italian espresso café, don’t order a “latte” unless you’re in the mood for a glass of milk. Order a “caffe latte” and you’ll get the warm and satisfying libation you intended. Now that you’ve mastered the basic coffee drinks and their nomenclature, you can further expand your coffee thesaurus by discovering the subtle additions that vary these drinks. Make yours “skinny” by substituting skim milk, or “breve” with halfand-half. Espressos can be basic (a 11/2ounce cup), ristretto (“short,” a 1-ounce serving) or lungo (“long,” a 2-ounce serving). Cappuccino can be basic or alternatively layered in an Irish coffee mug. And don’t forget such romantic international alternatives as the French café au lait and the Cuban café con leche, which give a whole new definition to simple strong coffee and hot milk. Devote a little time to research and a little effort in experimentation, and you can turn that visit to your favorite barista into a rewarding experience. Just as many bars have a special “ordering language” for their clientele, the same is true of your favorite espresso bar. Learn, cultivate and flaunt the language of coffee. Soon you’ll be impressing your friends—and your local barista—when you order a “quad tall whipless foamless” or “a Yankee dog with a white hat on a leash.” Just watch their expressions when you try that! F&D

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BY RON JOHNSON

W

hat’s not to like about Memphis? This is the city that spawned rock and roll and raised smoked pork to an art form. The city that hosts the world’s biggest barbecue cooking contest is a must-visit destination for any culinary tourist. The fact that it’s only a six-hour drive from Louisville is ample justification to put it on the summer’s road trip list. For six blissful years I lived in the Bluff City, and over those years I had the good fortune to dine at most of the city’s best eateries. I also learned a thing or two about barbecue. While there is more to Memphis than rib shacks and pulled pork sandwiches, slow-smoked shoulder and dryrubbed ribs are not to be missed during a stay there. Most folks have heard about the ’cue at Corky’s and The Rendezvous, and these joints became world-famous for a reason: Good ribs and good pulled pork abound. Corky’s leapt ahead of the competition through consistency and a shrewd move to the suburbs back when most barbecue was offered in a more urban setting. The Rendezvous built its reputation on fine dr y-rubbed ribs, its proximity to the Peabody Hotel and the hospitality of the Vergos clan, now in its second generation of running the place. The veteran waitstaff is reminiscent of Pat’s Steakhouse or Cunningham’s. If you’re wanting to detour around the tourists, stop at Neely’s, where a full-pound shoulder sandwich is the best bet, or the Cozy Corner, where the super hot sauce is just as billed and the Cornish Game Hens offer a nice change of pace from pork and more pork. Just outside of downtown, Interstate Bar-B-Q is a smart place to stop for lunch on the way to the casinos in Tunica, Mississippi. Known mainly for ribs and pulled pork, Interstate is also where the locals go for barbecue spaghetti. Finally, those in the far eastern suburbs are well fed at the Germantown Commissary, where the slightly more upscale environment warrants new-fangled dishes like barbecue shrimp. Salads have been sighted on occasion as well. 44 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

Known as the armpit of Tennessee—but the capital of Arkansas and Mississippi—Memphis is the urban destination for those in the region seeking high-end and upscale cuisine. Tourists should take advantage of the numerous innovative and classic restaurants in town that feature more than barbecue. After several successive meals of smoked pork, visitors will welcome the offbeat, Caribbean flavors of the food at Automatic Slim’s Tonga Club. The brainchild of Memphis restaurant mogul Karen Blockman-Carrier, and the oldest restaurant in her empire, Automatic Slim’s borrows its vibe from the restaurant’s Manhattan namesake and its cuisine from Jamaica, Latin America and Mexico. Live entertainment is often on tap as well; El-Vez, the Mexican Elvis, has played more than one impromptu show there. Even hotter is the Beauty Shop, where Blockman-Carrier has renovated a vintage salon into the hippest spot in the Cooper-Young district. Its New American cuisine includes a raw bar and rotisserie-grilled meats. For those seeking a more gentrified South, white linens are on the table and more familiar continental cuisine is on the menu at Michel Leny’s Café Society. Leny, a Belgian by way of Paris, is a gregarious and charming host who often jumps behind the stove to oversee the food that has kept Café Society on top of the Memphis restaurant scene for more than a decade. Located on a quiet, tree-lined street in the Evergreen Historic District, Café Society has a devoted clientele of neighborhood locals who are on a first-name basis with much of the veteran staff. The competition among top restaurants in Memphis is stiff. One of the most formidable talents is a Danish-born, French-trained chef named Erling Jensen. His eponymous restaurant is the place for travelers seeking haute cuisine and the type of service warranted by a special occasion. Jensen was formerly the chef at La Tourelle, where Memphians have enjoyed classic French cuisine since 1977. The fine food and quaint Queen Anne cottage—hence the French name for “The Tower”—are only part of the reason it consistently ranks among the best French restaurants in town. For those willing to tear themselves away from mounds of pulled pork and tubs of coleslaw, Memphis offers a vibrant and


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diverse music scene ranging from straightforward blues to countrified rockabilly. Fortunately, most of this music can be enjoyed in juke joints known as much for their grub as they are for their house band. Beale Street dominates the downtown scene, but those who seek out spots like Ernestine & Hazel’s are rewarded with juicy, hot-off-the-grill burgers and ice-cold beers that taste just right after dancing the night away to the best music Stax Records has to offer. Huey’s in Midtown is everyone’s favorite place to shoot toothpicks into the ceiling while local jazz bands swing on Sunday nights, but the Huey Burger draws a crowd as well. While it’s not a mecca for live music, the P&H Café has been drawing the late night musician and artist crowd for years. Its initials stand for Poor and Hungry, and it’s easy to see why this place is known for good, cheap bar eats. For those determined to have a real locals-only experience, Alex’s Tavern is a must for a late-night burger made in the kitchen’s ancient cast-iron skillet. Fino’s from the Hill was a hit from the day it opened in Midtown in the early 1990’s. Owners Joann and Terry Johnson decided Memphis needed a real Italian deli, so they stocked this tiny storefront shop with everything from authentic Prosciutto di Parma to imported Sicilian olives. The real treats come from the kitchen, where Joann plumbs her Sicilian roots to create sandwiches laden with cured meats and warm olive spread, as well as hearty pastas slathered in her homemade red sauce. It’s also a great place to run into Memphis music royalty; the owner’s old buddies from Stax Records are known to come in, chow down and reminisce about Terry’s days as the drummer for the Mar-Keys. There is enough slow-cooked pork in Memphis to feed an army, and more than enough to fill every meal in a long weekend, but Memphis is more than just a barbecue town. No trip would be complete without tucking into a platter of dry-rubbed ribs at The Rendezvous or a spicy pulled pork sandwich at the Cozy Corner. But a visit to Memphis ought to include some of its other culinary delights, as well. And remember, when in Memphis do as the Memphians do: Eat, drink and be merry. F&D

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BY ROBIN GARR | PHOTOGRAPHS BY DAN DRY

Who invented pasta? Ask the Chinese, and they’ll tell you their ancestors were delicately slurping noodles for thousands of years before that Western interloper Marco Polo came to visit in the Middle Ages and lugged the tasty wheat treat back to Italy in 1292 A.D. Not so, claim the Italians, arguing that pasta came as no surprise to Signore Polo. After all, they say, the Caesars dined on macaroni 2,000 years ago, giving credit to Ceres, the goddess of agriculture (whose name gives us “cereal”), for coming up with the concept.

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about food pasta

I

n Northern Italy, archaeologists found pasta-cooking utensils in an Etruscan tomb. And even the ancient Hebrews got into the pasta act with an indisputable claim to the earliest written recipe for the stuff: The Jerusalem Talmud, written 40 years before those noodle-eating Romans destroyed the Temple, contained detailed instructions for the ritual preparation of dried noodles (Itriyos) for holiday feasts. It all comes down to this: Pasta is so delicious that everyone wants to claim it. Pasta turns up in cuisines from all over the world … it’s not just Italian. And pasta is so fundamentally a part of the larder that its roots go all the way back to the dawn of civilization. When early humans tired of the hunter-gatherer life and switched from snacking on roots, seeds and berries to planting and growing them, the invention of pasta wasn’t far behind. It didn’t take long for the first farmers to notice that wheat grains—boring fare on their own—could be dramatically improved by grinding them into flour and mixing the results with water to make a paste … which, not coincidentally, is the literal meaning of the word “pasta.” In many cultures from Arabia’s Fertile Crescent to Egypt to Northern Europe, this discovery evolved into bread, which is

not a bad thing. But here and there, around the Mediterranean and, it seems, in Asia, creative chefs came up with a different idea: Spread out your flour paste in thin sheets and let it dry. It will keep for weeks or even months until you get around to reconstituting it in boiling water, and it makes a tasty treat to enjoy on its own as a quick snack or, better still, covered with sauce to make a filling meal … and who’s counting carbs? Say what you will, but we don’t call this stuff “pasta” and “macaroni” and “spaghetti” because it’s, well, Norwegian. Italy may not be the only source of pasta, and it may not even be the first, but Italy has placed its stamp on pasta so firmly that there’s no denying the name of the stuff ends with a vowel. Pasta may be known all over the world, but it’s the Italians who have made it their culinary trademark. So intrigued were the Italians by pasta that for the first couple of thousand years they enjoyed it unadorned. Incredibly, it was only around 300 years ago, with the arrival of tomatoes from the New World, that some creative chef shouted, “Mamma mia! Let’s put something on our noodles!” Every Italian region has its own favorite shapes, styles and colors of pasta, a bewildering array of more than 1,000

varieties. A trip to a well-stocked pasta store (like Louisville’s Lotsa Pasta, 3717 Lexington Road) or even a well-stocked supermarket can be an exercise in confusion for those unfamiliar with the variety of pasta beyond spaghetti and elbow macaroni. Ditto for a visit to a fine Italian restaurant with a good choice of pasta dishes on the menu—Volare, for example, at 2300 Frankfort Avenue, offers a mix-and-match selection of nine pasta shapes, some of them freshly handmade, with eight toothsome sauces. But the world of pasta isn’t as complicated as it seems. All the shapes and styles boil down to a half-dozen primary categories including long, thin noodles, shor t tubes, offbeat shapes, tiny soup pasta bits the size of rice grains, and the wide world of stuffed pasta pockets from ravioli to won tons. Virtually all Italian pasta is made from hard durum wheat flour, but Asian and other noodles might be made from rice, cornmeal or even such obscure grains as buckwheat or the South American quinoa. Pasta colors may come from eggs (yellow), spinach (green), tomatoes (red) or even squid ink (black). Freshly made pasta was a big fad in the ’90s, and still enjoys some popularity; it’s really the only way to go for stuffed


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pastas. But don’t underestimate the traditional pasta asciutta (pastaciutta for short), literally “dried pasta,” which offers a toothy texture and al dente bite that provides an appealing contrast to the softer and more delicate texture of the fresh-made stuff. Here, then, is Food & Dining’s Field Guide to Pasta, a convenient survey of pasta in its major shapes and sizes, with a few comments to help you sort out the international variety of pasta that awaits your attention.

Long Pasta Long and round Say “pasta,” and most of us will think first of spaghetti. It’s the classic with tomato sauce, marinara or meat sauce— with or without the meatballs. Spaghetti and similar long, thin strands are customarily served with lighter sauces based on tomatoes or olive oil. Spaghetti comes in a variety of sizes, from the delicately fine capellini (“angel hair”), pasta so thin that it needs only a moment or two to cook, to vermicelli (“little worms”), to thin spaghettini, to regular and thick spaghetti. Set aside a subcategory for linguine, a spaghetti-like strand squashed into a flattened oval shape—the perfect vehicle

John and Vicki Hale, also known as Louisville’s Mr. and Mrs. Pasta, claim no Italian ancestry. Indeed, John says he originally planned a wine shop. But they saw a market for fresh pasta and opened Lotsa Pasta in a tiny storefront on Bardstown Road in 1982. They moved to St. Matthews a decade later, and the shop has become a virtual mecca for all things pasta, plus deli meats and cheeses, an eclectic international selection of condiments and packaged specialty foods from around the world … and first-rate sandwiches to go. Lotsa Pasta carries more than 200 varieties of dried pasta, and produces about 40 different kinds of ravioli, tortellini and fresh long pastas in the backroom of the shop at 3717 Lexington Road. In the photos below, pasta chef Larry Birkhead fashions the day’s batch of long pasta. Lotsa Pasta’s fresh pastas and breads are sold at a dozen local grocers and numerous local restaurants. And business is good. This summer, the shop will expand into space next door, offering customers a place to sit down and relax with their Lotsa Pasta fare.


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for seafood sauces made with shrimp or clams—and chitarra (“guitar strings”), the size of spaghetti but with a square profile that hangs on tight to cheese sauces. Many Asian wheat pastas fall into this category, too, including Japanese ramen, Chinese wheat noodles, some forms of rice noodle, earthy brown Japanese soba (buckwheat noodles) and even the thin, translucent soybean noodles called “cellophane noodles” or “bean threads.” And, of course, the traditional European and American egg noodles join the spaghetti-like or ribbon pasta categories: Think chicken noodle soup.

Long and flat Fettuccine are the classic form for this style, sometimes called “ribbon pasta” in English.These long, flat noodles hold cream and cheese sauces well, which may explain why you rarely hear of spaghetti Alfredo. Tagliatelle are fettuccine’s twin, while other pasta ribbons vary from narrow (tagliarini) to wide (pappardelle, traditionally served with a rabbit sauce) to wider (the familiar lasagne with its rippled edges). Other ribbon pastas include trenette, a narrow ribbon that’s the traditional choice with pesto, and mafalde, which look like narrow ribbons of lasagne, with the rippled edge but less than one inch wide. Asian rice noodles are often made in a flat shape similar to fettuccine.

Long and hollow Technically pasta tubes, but closely akin to spaghetti in shape, bucatini and the identical perciatelli look like extra-thick spaghetti but have a thin lengthwise hole that funnels simmering water inside the [OPPOSITE PAGE] TOP LEFT: Limestone’s

saffron pappardelle with artichokes, brussels sprouts and okra, topped with Kenny’s Country asiago cheese. TOP RIGHT: Café Lou Lou’s tri-colored cheese tortellini with shrimp in a whitewine cream sauce. BOTTOM: English Grill Chef Joe Castro’s pan-seared salmon with green onion tortelloni filled with goat cheese and topped with fricassee of mushrooms and celery.

tubes, speeding up cooking time. Bucatini rigati are similar, but are vermicelli-skinny, cook very fast and have a roughened surface that’s particularly adept at holding thin sauces. An oddball variation, fusilli bucati lunghi, is long bucatini coiled into a tight corkscrew curl.

Short Pasta Like to eat your pasta with a fork or spoon rather than twisting long strands into twirls? It’s short pasta for you, then— in tubes, twists and a fanciful array of inventive shapes. In general, short pasta shapes do well with thick or chunky sauces or in baked dishes.

Tubes You’ll rarely see this pasta shape made fresh, as the dough must be extruded through a die, a job for a factory machine. Americans may be most familiar with elbow macaroni, but in Italy you’ll find dozens of spoon-size, tube-like shapes. One basic type, penne (“quills”), are inchlong tubes with diagonally cut ends. They may be smooth (also occasionally offered as garganelli), ridged (rigati) or undersize (pennette). Sometimes they’re billed as mostaccioli (“little moustaches”), a popular Italian-American shape that may have originally come over with Ellis Island immigrants from Calabria, the “toe” of the Italian “boot.” Ziti are almost the same shape, but with squared ends. And the fanciful cavatappi (“corkscrews”) look just as the name implies—a thin-walled, spoonsize pasta tube twisted into the shape of the business end of a wine-bottle opener. Go up a size to a square-cut tube just large enough to slip over your little finger and you’ve got rigatoni, either ridged (rigati) or smooth, or its half-length sibling mezzi rigatoni. Really big tubes the size of a roll of half-dollars are called cannelloni or manicotti, and they’re usually stuffed with such goodies as ricotta cheese or a spinach-and-cheese combination, then sauced and baked.

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Shor t pasta is created in a wide variety of shapes limited only by the pasta-maker’s imagination and the demands of the marketplace. Short pasta shapes include such offbeat modern forms as tiny tennis rackets, Christmas trees and, rumor has it, an intriguing selection of X-rated shapes. Some of the more familiar and traditional extruded-pasta shapes include conchiglie (“seashells”), ridged pasta bites that can range from tiny bite-size shells to teacup-size items, that are usually stuffed and baked like manicotti. Fusilli (“fuses”) bear thin threads like wood screws, while the pretty pinched-at-themiddle variety look just like their name: farfalle (“butterflies”). They’re sometimes nicknamed “bow-ties.” Orecchiette (“little ears”) are dimpled, rather thick little rounds of pasta that remain a bit chewy even when cooked al dente; they’re often tossed with rapini (broccoli rabe) or other bitter greens. Strozzapretti, tightly twisted pasta rolls, get their nickname “priest stranglers” from an irreverent legend about the greedy parish priest who came to dinner and gobbled so greedily that he, well, you know. Also in the short-pasta category are malfatti (literally “badly made”), scraps of wide pasta, usually fresh, cut by hand or intentionally broken into irregular shapes to provide a variety of texture in a dish. Some of the more off-the-wall short pasta shapes seem to be made more for showing off (“oh, they’re so cute!”) than for serious gustatory enjoyment. In this category we might place radiatori (“radiators”), ruote (“cart wheels”) and campanelli (elongated bell shapes). Non-Italian goodies like German spätzle (short egg noodles pushed through holes in a colander into simmering water where they cook into curly strands) and American dumplings— the ultimate comfort food—also qualify as short pastas.


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Soup Pasta If your pasta is tiny enough to pile up on a spoon like rice, it’s soup pasta, designed to swim in broth or thicker soups. Larger sizes, such as tubetti (little tubes), are usually destined for hearty minestrone or pasta e fagiole (pasta and beans), while the many tiny sizes add heft to brodo (broth). Soup pastas are usually named after their shapes, including orzo (“barley”), risi (“rice”), semi di melone (“melon seeds”), acini di pepe (“peppercorns”), stelle (“stars”) and, of course, the tiny pasta letters that make good old American-style alphabet soup so much fun to eat and read. Couscous, too, is a form of pasta. It is dried wheat dough made in tiny fragments that, when steamed, cook up into a grainlike starch dish. In Lebanon, Israel and the Mediterranean countries of Sardinia and Malta, a large-sized variation on couscous— pasta balls the size of tiny peas—is a favorite.

Stuffed Pasta Let’s wrap it up, literally, with the range of stuffed pastas that make such comforting fare. Italian ravioli, “pillows” of fresh pasta formed into square or round pockets, hold chopped meat, vegetables or cheese. When shaped as crescents they’re called agnolotti; as half-moons they’re anolini or tortelli. Smaller versions, twisted into ring shapes and served in an Alfredostyle sauce or swimming in soup, are tortellini, tortelloni or cappelletti, depending on their shape. Stuffed pasta may be the most international of dishes—in China they’re won tons or potstickers; in Japan it’s gyoza. The European Jewish version is kreplach, and the Polish call ’em pierogies. Expand our definition to stuffed pastry, and we’ve added everything from Sicilian calzones to Latino empanadas, at which point we’ve pretty much left the world of pasta behind us. And then, of course, there’s pizza … but let’s save that for another day. F&D www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 53


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recipes top chef recipes

BY ROBIN GARR | PHOTOGRAPHS BY DAN DRY

pastapleasures What could be more comforting than a ration of steaming pasta, ladled into a warm bowl and topped with a savory sauce? There’s something about pasta that pastes a smile on any diner’s face, whether you’re digging into something as simple and old-fashioned as spaghetti and meatballs with tomato sauce, or something as new-fangled as, well, Chef Kimberley Jones’s shrimp and penne pasta with citrus- and cilantro-scented sweet-pea sauce.


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Jones, Sullivan University’s director of professional catering, and her colleague Collen Engle, a chef-instructor at Sullivan, are the designated chef team for our Food & Dining recipe challenge. We invited them both to come up with new, creative pasta dishes that a moderately experienced home cook can put together, and they’ve favored us with four intriguing recipes. The dishes bid a respectful salute to the Italian side of pasta’s heritage, but also go well beyond sunny Italy with innovative “fusion” touches that provide an international accent. Jones said she chose the Latino flavors of cilantro and citrus, for instance, not only to brighten her shrimp penne dish, but also to make it fresh and appetizing for spring. “It’s a light dish,” she said. “The cilantro and lime tend to perk up flavors in food, and they marry nicely with the shrimp. With peas coming into season, it’s delicate and fresh, and would make a nice luncheon or brunch dish or even a light summer dinner.” Her chicken with rustic tomato sauce is an old family favorite, she said: “I call it Sunday chicken, so easy to make that I prepare it at home for myself. It has good, fresh flavors, it’s low in fat, low in cholesterol, simple but hearty, and it’s versatile … you could substitute a grilled chicken breast, or modify it for sautéed shrimp or even grilled sausage in place of the chickens. Once you’ve got the sauce, everything else is secondary.” Engle said he toyed with international possibilities before deciding to stick with Italianstyle dishes. “I tried to go away from everyday things to create more innovative dishes,” he said. “I’ve been playing around with lobster for a test I have to do for cer tification. And, of course, seafood goes well with pasta, so I thought, let’s go with lobster … people don’t usually think about lobster with pasta.” His lasagna, too, is a nontraditional version, adding creamy, cheesy Alfredo sauce to the usual ingredients and perking up the dish’s hearty layers by stuffing in spicy chicken bits and sautéed vegetables. TOP: Chef Kimberly Jones’s shrimp and

penne pasta with citrus- and cilantro-scented sweet-pea sauce. MIDDLE: Chef Collen Engle’s fettuccine with lobster sauce. BOTTOM: Chef Collen Engle’s stuffed lasagna with Alfredo sauce. OPPOSITE PAGE: Chef Kimberly Jones’s herb roasted chicken with rustic tomato sauce and tagliatelle pasta. www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 55


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Chef Collen Engle

Stuffed Lasagna with Alfredo Sauce SERVES 8-10 For the noodles: 1 /2 pound dry lasagna noodles 2 quarts water 2 teaspoons salt Olive oil 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 2. Put the water in a large pot and add the salt. Bring the water to a boil, add the lasagna noodles and cook until they’re just soft. Drain the noodles and run them under cool water to stop the cooking.Toss with a small amount of oil and set aside. (As a labor-saving alternative, you may use the “no-boil” lasagna noodles that are designed to cook during the baking process.) For the filling: 1 pound boneless chicken breasts 1 tablespoon dried red-pepper flakes Salt Black pepper 1 small onion 1 stick celery 1 small carrot 6 ounces white button mushrooms 1 teaspoon oregano, chopped 1 tablespoon basil, chiffonade 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 cup peas 1 /2 cup heavy cream 4 eggs 1. Prepare the chicken: Rub the chicken breasts with the red-pepper flakes and salt and pepper to taste. Sauté until brown, and then finish in the 350-degree oven for 20 minutes or until their internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Remove from oven. 2. Make a vegetable sauce: Dice the onion, celery and carrot into 1/4-inch pieces. Slice the mushrooms into 1/8-inch pieces. Chop the fresh oregano and cut the fresh basil leaves into a chiffonade by rolling several leaves together and cutting them crosswise into very thin slices. Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan and add the chopped onion, 56 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

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celery, carrot and mushrooms. Sauté until soft, and then add the peas, cream, oregano and basil. Cook until the cream thickens a bit. Set aside to cool. 3. Hard-boil the eggs: Put them in a saucepan with enough cold water to cover them and then bring to a boil. After 12 minutes, remove the pan from the heat and refresh by running cool water over the eggs. Shell the eggs and cut them into 1 /4-inch slices. For the Alfredo sauce (courtesy of Michael Hungerford)

1 1 1 3 2

quart heavy cream shallot, cut in half cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese ounces freshly grated Romano cheese sticks butter, softened to room temperature 1 egg yolk 1 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg Salt Pepper 1. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, put both halves of the shallot into the heavy cream. Scald the cream by bringing it just to a boil. Strain it through a chinois or fine strainer and discard the shallot. 2. Place the cream back on low heat and gradually stir in the Parmesan, about onefourth of it at a time, until it is incorporated. 3. Add the Romano cheese until incorporated, and strain again. 4. Place back on low heat and whisk in the butter and egg yolk. Continue stirring as you add nutmeg and salt and pepper to taste. Use immediately. Assembly: All the ingredients prepared above, plus: 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese 11/2 cup Romano cheese, grated Oregano leaves for garnish Diced tomato for garnish 1. Cut the mozzarella into 1/4-inch cubes. Tear the chicken into bite-size pieces. 2. Arrange a layer of lasagna noodles in an oiled 8-by-8-inch ovenproof dish. Top with about half of the hard-boiled egg slices, followed by about half of the mozzarella, chicken, vegetable sauce and 1/2 cup of the Romano cheese.Top with another layer of noodles, press down, and repeat the layering process with the rest of the egg, mozzarella, chicken, vegetable sauce and another 1/2 cup of the Romano. Top with

one more layer of noodles, then the remaining Romano. Bake in the 350-degree oven for approximately 20 minutes or until the dish is heated through and browned on top. 3. Serve hot, topped with the Alfredo sauce and garnished with the oregano and diced tomato.

Fettuccine with Lobster Sauce (fettuccine all’aragosta) SERVES 4 For the lobster sauce: 2 lobsters - 11/2 pounds each 1 small onion 1 clove garlic 3 pounds ripe tomatoes or 4 cups canned plum tomatoes 1 /4 cup butter 2 tablespoons olive oil 3 tablespoons brandy 11/2 cups dry white wine 2 tablespoons chopped parsley Salt Pepper 1. Boil the lobsters for approximately 8 minutes in enough salted water to cover them by several inches. Remove from heat and stop the cooking process by running cool water over the lobsters. 2. Break off the claws and remove the lobster meat, reserving the shells. Break off the legs and reserve. Separate the tail and remove any roe or coral, then remove the tail meat, reserving the tail shell intact. 3. Roughly chop the onion. Peel and smash the garlic clove. Peel, seed and dice the tomatoes if you’re using fresh. 4. Using one-half of the butter and all of the olive oil, sauté the lobster legs and shells in a large skillet or sauté pan together with the onion and garlic until the vegetables are soft. (Take care to remove any small shell fragments) Pour in the brandy all at once and light it with a match to “flame.” When the blue flame has died down, add the tomatoes and wine. Cover and simmer the sauce for 20 minutes. 5. Remove the shells and legs, then process the sauce in a blender. Put it back on low heat, stir in the remaining butter and parsley and heat through. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste. For the fettuccine: 1 tablespoon salt 1 pound fettuccine Olive oil


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Put 1 gallon of water in a large pot, add the salt and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente (“to the bite,” meaning just tender). Drain and toss with a small amount of olive oil and set aside in a warm bowl. Assembly: All the ingredients prepared above, plus: 2 tablespoons fresh basil, sliced into a chiffonade (see recipe above) 1 /2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 1. Coarsely chop the lobster meat and add it to the sauce. 2. Toss the sauce with the fettuccine and serve garnished with the basil and cheese. (If you prefer, you can reserve the 4 claws whole and place them on top of the pasta dish, or reserve the lobster tail pieces, cut in half lengthwise, to serve as holding “cups” for the fettuccine).

Chef Kimberly Jones Shrimp and Penne Pasta with Citrus- and Cilantro-Scented Sweet-Pea Sauce SERVES 4 For the sauce: 2 cups spring peas, fresh or frozen 1 cup chicken broth 1 /4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice 1 /2 cup heavy cream 1 teaspoon salt 1. Combine peas, broth, cilantro and lime juice in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook 15-20 minutes. 2. Remove from heat and puree with a handheld blender. 3. Return to heat. Add cream and stir to incorporate. Season to taste with salt and keep warm. For the shrimp: 3 or 4 cloves garlic 1 cup mushrooms 1 /2 cup artichoke hearts 1 /2 cup olive oil

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11/2 pounds shrimp, peeled and de-veined /4 cup lime juice, freshly squeezed 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced

1

1. Peel and mince the garlic, which should be enough to make about 1/4 cup. Slice the mushrooms and quarter the artichoke hearts. 2. Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan. Add the garlic, mushrooms and artichokes and cook until the mushrooms are golden brown. Add the shrimp and lime juice and cook until the shrimp are light pink, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and toss with the parsley. For the pasta: 1 teaspoon salt 6 cups water 1 pound penne pasta Dissolve the salt in the water in a large pot. Bring to a boil, add the pasta and cook 810 minutes or until pasta is tender. Assembly: All the ingredients prepared above, plus: Chopped cilantro Lime wedges Toss the sauce and pasta together and divide among four serving bowls. Divide shrimp among the four bowls, and then garnish with cilantro and lime wedges.

Herb Roasted Chicken with Rustic Tomato Sauce and Tagliatelle Pasta SERVES 4 For the tomato sauce: 1 /4 cup olive oil 2 full heads fresh garlic 1 pint cherry tomatoes 1 /2 cup fresh basil leaves 1 quart chicken broth 1. Separate the garlic heads into individual cloves and peel them. 2. Heat the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add all the garlic cloves and cook to a deep golden brown. Rinse and add the cherry tomatoes, stir to coat with the oil, and continue cooking until the skin on the tomatoes begins to blister. Add the basil leaves and the chicken broth; simmer for 45-60 minutes. Using a handheld blender, puree the sauce and keep it warm.

For the chicken: 2 whole roasting chickens 1 cup olive oil 1 /2 cup fresh thyme, picked from stem 1 /2 cup fresh rosemary, picked from stem and minced 1 /2 cup fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced 1 /2 cup garlic, minced 1 /4 cup sugar 1 /2 cup kosher salt 1 /2 cup black pepper, coarse ground Butcher’s twine 1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 2. Remove neck and organ meats from cavity of chickens, if necessary, and rinse them well inside and out. Place the chickens on a roasting rack in a roasting pan. 3. Combine 1/2 cup of the olive oil with all the fresh herbs and garlic. Using your index and middle fingers, gently separate the skin from the flesh of the chickens and rub the herb mixture generously onto the meat of the chicken underneath the skin. This process is called “barding,” an ancient cooking term that once referred to covering roast meats with a layer of fat. 4. In a separate bowl, combine the sugar, salt and pepper. Rub this mixture over the skin of the entire chicken. Using the butcher’s twine, tie each chicken’s legs securely together. Place the pan in the preheated oven and roast approximately 11/2 hours or to an internal temperature of 160 degrees. When the chickens are done, remove the roasting rack and allow them to cool 10 minutes before cutting in half. 5. Meanwhile, on top of the stove, add 1 cup of the rustic tomato sauce to the roasting pan, stir to scrape up the pan drippings, and return the pan contents to the tomato sauce. For the pasta: 1 teaspoon salt 6 cups water 1 pound package tagliatelle or other ribbon pasta such as fettuccine or linguine Combine water and salt in a large pot. Bring to a boil, stir in the pasta and cook 810 minutes until pasta is tender. Assembly: Place half of a chicken and one-fourth of the pasta on a dinner plate, and pour 1 cup of sauce over the pasta. F&D www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 57


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dining guide

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ALL RESTAURANTS LISTED ALPHABETICALLY, FOLLOWED BY THE PAGE NUMBER OF ITS REVIEW, IT’S CUISINE STYLE, AND THE CORRESPONDING MAP NUMBER(S).

Alphabetical Index

[ ] DENOTES UNMAPPED MULTIPLE LOCATIONS. RESTAURANT

Cuisine Style

64

AFRICAN ASIAN/CHINESE ASIAN/FILIPINO ASIAN/JAPANESE ASIAN/KOREAN ASIAN/THAI ASIAN/VIETNAMESE BAR & GRILL BARBECUE BISTRO/CONTEMPORARY CAFÉS CAFETERIAS CAJUN/CREOLE CARIBBEAN/CUBAN CASUAL DINING COFFEE HOUSE DESSERTS/BAKERY ENTERTAINMENT DINING EUROPEAN/BOSNIAN EUROPEAN/GERMAN EUROPEAN/GREEK EUROPEAN/IRISH EUROPEAN/ITALIAN EUROPEAN/SPANISH FINE DINING HOME STYLE/SOUTHERN INDIAN MEXICAN MICROBREWERIES MIDDLE EASTERN PIZZA SANDWICH/DELI SEAFOOD SOUTHWEST/TEX MEX STEAKHOUSE UPSCALE CASUAL

81 81 84 84 84 84 85 79 78 66 68 75 86 86 71 88 89 75 85 85 85 85 85 86 64 74 86 87 81 86 76 77 69 88 70 64

Area Maps

90

MAP # DIRECTION PG # Overview 90 (Index) Downtown 92 1 (Downtown Louisville) Near East 93 2 (Highlands – Crescent Hill) East 94 3 (St. Matthews) South East 95 4 (Hikes Point – Buechel) East 96 5 (Hurstbourne N. – Lyndon) South East 97 6 (Hurstbourne S. – Jeffersontown) North East 98 7 (River Rd. – Brownsboro Rd.) North East 98 8 (Westport Rd.) Far East 99 9 (Middletown) North East 99 10 (Prospect) South East 99 11 (Fern Creek) South 100 12 (Airport – Okolona) South West 101 13 (Shively – Pleasure Ridge Park) Indiana 102 14 (New Albany – Floyds Knobs) Indiana 103 15 (Clarksville) Indiana 103 16 (Jeffersonville)

PAGE #/CUISINE STYLE

2 Hahn’s Mongolian Grill 211 Clover Lane 316 Ormsby 610 Magnolia A Nice Restaurant A Taste of China Alameda Alley Cat Café Amazing Grace Deli Anchor Inn Angilo’s Pizza Angio’s Restaurant Annie Café Annie’s Pizza Ann’s by the River Another Place Anthony’s Anytimes Applebee’s Appleby’s Café Arirang Arni’s Pizza Aroma Café Artemisia Artisan’s Coffee Café Asian Buffet Asian Pearl Asiatique Atomic Saucer Atrium Café August Moon Austin’s Avalon Azalea Babby’s Steakhouse Babylon Backyard BBQ Backyard Burger Bahama Breeze Bakelicious Bake’s Barbeque The Bakery Bamboo House Bank Shot Billiards Barbara Lee’s Kitchen Baxter Station Bazos Mexican Grill Bean Street Café Bearno’s Pizza Beef O’Brady’s Beg for More Café Behar Café Bendoya Sushi Bar Bentley’s Big Dave’s Outpost Big Hopp’s Big Subs Blimpie’s Subs BLU Mediterranean Grille Blue Dog Bakery Blue Mule Sports Café Blue Peppermill Café Bluegrass Brewing Co. Bluegrass Café Bombay Int’l. Market Bonefish Grill Bootleg Barbecue Co. Brandon’s Bar-B-Que Bravo! Breadworks Brick Oven Bristol Bar & Grille Browning’s Brewery Buca Di Beppo Buckhead Mountain Grill Buck’s Buffalo Crossing Buffalo Wild Wings Bull Frog Garden Bulldog Café The Butterfly Garden Café C.A.P.P.P.’s Deli California’s Coffee House

MAP #

81 Asian/Chinese 6 64 Fine Dining 3 66 Bistro/Contemporary 1 64 Fine Dining 1 71 Casual Dining 14, 16 81 Asian/Chinese 1 88 Southwest/Tex Mex 2 68 Cafés 9 77 Sandwich/Deli 2 74 Home Style/Southern 9 76 Pizza 13 76 Pizza 4 85 Asian/Vietnamese 12 76 Pizza 1, 13 75 Cafeterias 16 77 Sandwich/Deli 1 77 Sandwich/Deli 1 71 Casual Dining 7 71 Casual Dining [9] 68 Cafés 16 84 Asian/Korean 4 76 Pizza 14 68 Cafés 14 64 Upscale Casual 1 88 Coffee House 7 81 Asian/Chinese 14 81 Asian/Chinese 6 65 Upscale Casual 2 88 Coffee House 1 66 Bistro/Contemporary 5 81 Asian/Chinese 2 65 Upscale Casual 7 65 Upscale Casual 2 65 Upscale Casual 7 70 Steakhouse 16 86 Middle Eastern 2 78 Barbecue 14 77 Sandwich/Deli 6 86 Caribbean/Cuban 3 89 Desserts/Bakery 12 78 Barbecue 13 89 Desserts/Bakery 4 81 Asian/Chinese 12 77 Sandwich/Deli 1 74 Home Style/Southern 2 67 Bistro/Contemporary 2 87 Mexican 3 88 Coffee House 14 76 Pizza [12] 79 Bar & Grill 3, 8, 9, 12 68 Cafés 12 85 European/Bosnian 12 84 Asian/Japanese 1 71 Casual Dining 1 79 Bar & Grill 2 72 Casual Dining 1 77 Sandwich/Deli 13 77 Sandwich/Deli 2, 4, 6 65 Upscale Casual 1 68 Cafés 2 79 Bar & Grill 6 68 Cafés 14 81 Microbreweries 1, 3 68 Cafés 4 86 Indian 2 69 Seafood 5 78 Barbecue 11, 12 78 Barbecue 8 65 Upscale Casual 3 89 Desserts/Bakery 2, 7, 9 85 European/Italian 6 65 Upscale Casual 1, 2, 5 81 Microbreweries 1 85 European/Italian 6 72 Casual Dining 4, 5, 12, 16 64 Fine Dining 1 75 Ent. Dining 6 79 Bar & Grill 2,3, 6, 8, 9, 13 72 Casual Dining 11 68 Cafés 12 68 Cafés 2 77 Sandwich/Deli 3 89 Coffee House 14


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The Café at the Antique Mall 68 Café Emilie 65 Café Fraiche 68 Café J 68 Café Kilimanjaro 81 Café Lou Lou 67 Café Metro 64 Café Mimosa 85 Caffe Classico 89 California Pizza Kitchen 76 Captain’s Quarters 72 Cardinal Hall of Fame Café 72 Carolina Shrimp & Seafood 69 Carolyn’s 74 Carrabba’s Italian Grille 85 Champions Grill 72 Champion’s Sports Rest. 79 Ch¯ eba Hut 77 Check’s Café 74 Cheddar Box Café 68 Cheddar’s Casual Café 72 Chez Seneba African 81 Chick Inn 72 The Chicken House 74 Chicken King 77 Chili’s 72 China Buffet 82 China Garden 82 China Inn 82 China King 82 China King Palace 82 Chinatown 82 Chinese Chef 82 Chinese Express 82 Chinese Restaurant 82 Chong Garden 82 Chopsticks 82 Chopsticks House 82 Chung King 82 Ciano’s 77 Cici’s 76 City Café 68 City Wok 82 Clark Boy Bar-B-Que 78 Clarksville Seafood 70 Cleon’s Rib Shack 78 Cleo’s Coffee 89 Clifton’s Pizza 76 Club Grotto 65 Coach Lamp 65 Coffee Beanery 89 Coffee Pot Café 89 Colonnade Cafeteria 75 Come Back Inn 86 Corner Café 65 Cottage Café 74 Cottage Inn 74 Country Kitchen 74 Coys’ 72 Cravings a la Carte 75 Cribstone Pub 79 Crystal Chinese 82 Cumberland Brews 81 Cunningham’s 72 Cutting Board Café 68 Cyclers Café 68 Damon’s 78 Danish Express 77 Day’s Espresso 89 DBL Shotz 89 De La Torre’s 86 Deke’s Marketplace Grill 67 Del Frisco’s 70 Delta Restaurant 80 Derby Café 68 Derby City Café by Dalal 68 Derby Dinner Playhouse 75 Desserts by Helen 89 De-ville’s 74 Diamante 67 Diamond Pub & Billiards 80 Diefenbach Café 68 Dillon’s Steakhouse 70 Dino’s Down to Lunch 77 Ditto’s Grill 67 Dixie Cup Café 68 Dizzy Whizz Drive-In 77 Djuli 85

MAP #

Cafés 1 Upscale Casual 3 Cafés 7 Cafés 3 African 1 Bistro/Contemporary 2 Fine Dining 2 Asian/Vietnamese 2 Coffee House 2 Pizza 5 Casual Dining 10 Casual Dining 12 Seafood 3 Home Style/Southern 13 European/Italian 5 Casual Dining 16 Bar & Grill 1 Sandwich/Deli 2 Home Style/Southern 1 Cafés 3, 9 Casual Dining 8, 15 African 12 Casual Dining 10 Home Style/Southern 14 Sandwich/Deli 1 Casual Dining 5 Asian/Chinese 15 Asian/Chinese 12 Asian/Chinese 1 Asian/Chinese 6, 14 Asian/Chinese 11 Asian/Chinese 3, 12 Asian/Chinese 1 Asian/Chinese 13 Asian/Chinese 12 Asian/Chinese 13 Asian/Chinese 1 Asian/Chinese 1 Asian/Chinese 1 Sandwich/Deli 9 Pizza 14 Cafés 1, 2 Asian/Chinese 1 Barbecue 13 Seafood 15 Barbecue 1 Coffee House 14 Pizza 2 Upscale Casual 2 Upscale Casual 1 Coffee House 5 Coffee House 1 Cafeterias 1 European/Italian 1, 16 Upscale Casual 5 Home Style/Southern 9 Home Style/Southern 1 Home Style/Southern 13 Casual Dining 12 Cafeterias 1 Bar & Grill 2 Asian/Chinese 1 Microbreweries 2 Casual Dining 1 Cafés 8 Cafés 2 Barbecue 6 Sandwich/Deli 3 Coffee House 1, 2 Coffee House 16 European/Spanish 2 Bistro/Contemporary 1 Steakhouse 3 Bar & Grill 1 Cafés 12 Cafés 4 Ent. Dining 16 Desserts/Bakery 2, 10 Home Style/Southern 12 Bistro/Contemporary 2 Bar & Grill 3 Cafés 15 Steakhouse 6 Sandwich/Deli 1 Bistro/Contemporary 2 Cafés 13 Sandwich/Deli 1 European/Bosnian 12

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RESTAURANT

PAGE #/CUISINE STYLE

Dmitri’s Deli D’Nalley’s Restaurant Domino’s Pizza Don Pablos Dooley’s Bagels Double Dragon Double Dragon 8 Double Dragon 9 Double Dragon Buffet Double Dragon II Downtown New Orleans Dragon Garden Dutch’s Tavern Dynasty Buffet Eastern House Edna’s Good Stuff Eggroll King Eggroll Machine El Caporal El Mundo El Nopal El Nopalito El Paraiso El Restaurante Chiquito El Rey Mexican El Rodeo Mexican El Tarasco Emperor of China Empress of China Encore at Actors Theatre The English Grill Equus Erika’s German Rest. Ermin’s French Bakery Ernesto’s Euro Market Expressions of You Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que Fast Break Pizza Fat Jimmy’s Federal Hill Feed Bag Deli Ferd Grisanti Fiesta Time Mexican Grill Fifth Quarter Figaro’s Pizzeria Finley’s BBQ Firehouse BBQ First Wok The Fish House The Fish Hut The Fishery The Fishery Station Flabby’s Schnitzelburg The Flagship Flanigans Ale House Fork in the Road Formosa Chinese Fountain Room Four King’s Café Frank’s Steak House Frascelli’s N.Y. Deli Fratello’s Pizza Frolio’s Pizza Fuji Steakhouse Furlong’s Fusion Garden Room Café Gasthaus Gavi’s Restaurant Geli Cakes Genny’s Diner Germantown Café Gerstle’s Place Golden Buddha Golden Corral Golden Wall Goose Creek Diner Gourmet Grazing Grand Buffet Granville Inn Grape Leaf Grapevine Pantry Great American Grill Great Wall Great Wok Hall’s Cafeteria Happy Dragon

MAP #

77 Sandwich/Deli 1 74 Home Style/Southern 1 76 Pizza [20] 87 Mexican 5, 15 77 Sandwich/Deli 3, 5, 7, 9, 14 82 Asian/Chinese 2 82 Asian/Chinese 1 82 Asian/Chinese 6 82 Asian/Chinese 5 82 Asian/Chinese 5, 8, 11 86 Cajun/Creole 1 82 Asian/Chinese 2 80 Bar & Grill 3 82 Asian/Chinese 7 82 Asian/Chinese 13 84 Asian/Filipino 6 82 Asian/Chinese 13 82 Asian/Chinese 2 87 Mexican 4,6,12,15 87 Mexican 2 87 Mexican 6, 8, 12 87 Mexican 2, 4, 11 87 Mexican 12 87 Mexican 14 87 Mexican 4 87 Mexican 13 87 Mexican 3, 12 82 Asian/Chinese 7 82 Asian/Chinese 4 65 Upscale Casual 1 64 Fine Dining 1 64 Fine Dining 3 85 European/German 6 68 Cafés 1, 10, 14 87 Mexican 3, 5, 12, 16 77 Sandwich/Deli 8 89 Coffee House 1 78 Barbecue 6, 15 76 Pizza 8 76 Pizza 2, 5 68 Cafés 14 77 Sandwich/Deli 3 86 European/Italian 6 87 Mexican 8 70 Steakhouse 12 76 Pizza 9 78 Barbecue 1 78 Barbecue 4, 5, 11 82 Asian/Chinese 13 70 Seafood 2 70 Seafood 1 70 Seafood 3 70 Seafood 11 80 Bar & Grill 1 64 Fine Dining 1 80 Bar & Grill 2 74 Home Style/Southern 13 82 Asian/Chinese 14 72 Casual Dining 1 80 Bar & Grill 4 70 Steakhouse 16 77 Sandwich/Deli 7 76 Pizza 16 76 Pizza 12 84 Asian/Japanese 8 86 Cajun/Creole 2 65 Upscale Casual 2 68 Cafés 1 85 European/German 7 73 Casual Dining 1 77 Sandwich/Deli 2 74 Home Style/Southern 2 68 Cafés 1 80 Bar & Grill 3 82 Asian/Chinese 12 74 Home Style/Southern 4,12,15 82 Asian/Chinese 12 75 Home Style/Southern 8 69 Cafés 10 82 Asian/Chinese 13 80 Bar & Grill 1 86 Middle Eastern 2 69 Cafés 9 80 Bar & Grill 12 82 Asian/Chinese 2 82 Asian/Chinese 1 75 Cafeterias 2 82 Asian/Chinese 1

RESTAURANT

PAGE #/CUISINE STYLE

Hard Rock Café Harper’s Restaurant Harvest Moon Havana Rumba Hazelwood Restaurant Heather’s On The River Heavenly Ham Heine Brothers Coffee Heitzman Bakery & Deli Highland Coffee Co. Highlands Taproom Hitching Post Inn Hobknobb Roasting Co. Holly’s Legal Street Hometown Buffet Hometown Pizza Hong Kong Chinese Hong Kong Fast Food Hoops Grill and Sports Bar Hooters House of Dragon Howl at the Moon Ichiban Samurai Imperial Palace Indi’s Restaurant India Palace The Irish Rover Iroquois Pizza J. Alexander’s J. Graham’s Café J. Harrods Jabber’s Sports Grill Jack Fry’s Jack’s Lounge Jade Palace Jalapeño’s Jane’s Cafeteria Jarfi’s Bistro Jasmine Java Brewing Co. Jay’s Cafeteria Jazz Factory Jersey Mike’s Subs Jessie’s Restaurant Jillian’s Jimbo’s BBQ Jimmy’s on the River Joe Huber Restaurant Joe Muggs Joe’s Crab Shack Joe’s O.K. Bayou Joe’s Older Than Dirt John E’s JoJo’s Fish Market Juanita’s Burger Boy Jucy’s Smokehouse Julie’s of Jeffersonville Jumbo Buffet Kaelin’s Restaurant Kashmir Indian Kern’s Korner Kim’s Asian Grille King Buffet King Wok Kingfish King’s Buffet Kings Fast Food King’s Fried Chicken Kobe Japanese Steak Koreana II KT’s Kunz’s KY Taco L&N Wine Bar and Bistro La Bamba La Bodega La Embajada La Herradura La Marimba La Peche II La Petit Patisserie La Tapatia Le Relais Leander’s on Oak Lee’s Korean Legend’s Lemongrass Café Lentini’s

MAP #

67 Bistro/Contemporary 1 67 Bistro/Contemporary 5 82 Asian/Chinese 5 87 Caribbean/Cuban 3 75 Home Style/Southern 13 73 Casual Dining 7 77 Sandwich/Deli 4, 9, 14 89 Coffee House 2, 3 89 Desserts/Bakery 5 89 Coffee House 1, 2 76 Pizza 2 80 Bar & Grill 11 89 Coffee House 14 75 Home Style/Southern 1 75 Home Style/South. 6,8,13,15 76 Pizza 7, 9, 13 82 Asian/Chinese 14 82 Asian/Chinese 12 80 Bar & Grill 8, 12 73 Casual Dining 3,12,13,15,16 83 Asian/Chinese 3 75 Entertainment Dining 1 84 Asian/Japanese 6 83 Asian/Chinese 11 75 Home Style/Southern 1,3,12 86 Indian 5 85 European/Irish 2, 7 76 Pizza 13 65 Upscale Casual 3 69 Cafés 1 65 Upscale Casual 3 80 Bar & Grill 11 65 Upscale Casual 2 67 Bistro/Contemporary 3 83 Asian/Chinese 7 87 Mexican 13 75 Cafeterias 4 65 Upscale Casual 1 83 Asian/Chinese 9 89 Coffee House 1, 2, 3, 9, 10 75 Cafeterias 1 67 Bistro/Contemporary 1 77 Sandwich/Deli 5, 6, 8 75 Home Style/Southern 13 76 Entertainment Dining 2 78 Barbecue 12 73 Casual Dining 16 76 Ent. Dining 14 89 Coffee House 3, 8 70 Seafood 1 86 Cajun/Creole 6 73 Casual Dining 5 65 Upscale Casual 4 70 Seafood 4 77 Sandwich/Deli 1 78 Barbecue 5 77 Sandwich/Deli 16 83 Asian/Chinese 6 73 Casual Dining 2 86 Indian 2 73 Casual Dining 2 84 Asian/Korean 1 83 Asian/Chinese 6 83 Asian/Chinese 3 70 Seafood 4, 6, 7, 13, 16 83 Asian/Chinese 12 75 Home Style/Southern 13 75 Home Style/Southern 1 84 Asian/Japanese 16 84 Asian/Korean 12 65 Upscale Casual 2 64 Fine Dining 1 87 Mexican 11 67 Bistro/Contemporary 2 87 Mexican 2 86 European/Spanish 2 88 Mexican 12 88 Mexican 15 88 Mexican 11 67 Bistro/Contemporary 7 69 Cafés 1 88 Mexican 12 64 Fine Dining 4 67 Bistro/Contemporary 1 84 Asian/Korean 12 73 Casual Dining 14 85 Asian/Vietnamese 2, 8 86 European/Italian 2

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The Lighthouse 80 Lilly’s 64 Limestone 65 Lindy’s 75 Little Caesar’s Pizza 76 Little Chef 77 Little Saigon 85 Logan’s Roadhouse 70 Lolitas Tacos Inc. 88 Lone Star Steakhouse 70 Longhorn Steakhouse 70 Lonnie’s Taste Chicago 78 Los Aztecas 88 Los Indios Mexicano 88 Lotsa Pasta 78 Louisville Pizza Co. 76 Lucky Dragon 83 Lucky House Buffet 83 Lucky Strike Lanes / Felt 66 Luigi’s 86 Lunch Today 78 Lynn’s Paradise Café 73 Ma Zerellas 76 Magic Corner Bakery 89 Maharaja Indian Restaurant 86 Maido Essential Japanese 84 Mai’s Thai Restaurant 84 Main Eatery 78 Main Menu 73 Main Street Grind 69 Maker’s Mark Lounge 66 Mama Rosa 88 Mambo 87 Manchu Wok 83 Mancino’s Pizza 76 Manhattan Grill 73 Manoosh’s 86 Mark’s Feed Store 78 Martini Italian Bistro 86 Masterson’s 73 Max & Erma’s 74 Mayan Gypsy 88 Mazzoni’s Oyster Café 70 McAlister’s Deli 78 Melillo’s 86 The Melting Pot 66 Meridian Café 69 Mexico Tipico 88 Michael Murphy’s 80 Mike Linnig’s 70 Mitchell’s Fish Market 70 Moe’s Southwest Grill 88 Molly Malone’s 85 The Monkey Wrench 74 Morton’s of Chicago 70 Mr. Gattis 76 Mr. Lou’s 75 Mr. Z’s Kitchen 69 My Favorite Muffin 89 My Old KY Dinner Train 76 Naiman’s Deli 78 Nancy’s Bagel Grounds 78 Napa River Grill 66 Neil’s Place 75 Nermana’s Cuisine 85 Nero’s 66 New Direction Bar & Grill 81 New World Buffet 83 New York Capri Pizza 76 Nik’s Restaurant 85 Nord’s Brown Bag Deli 78 North End Café 69 O’Charley’s 74 O’Dolly’s 75 O’Shea’s Irish Pub 85 The Oakroom 64 Old Spaghetti Factory 86 Old Stone Inn 66 Ole Hickory Pit BBQ 79 The Olive Garden 86 Olive’s on Fourth 75 Ollie’s Trolley 78 Omar’s Gyro 86 On the Border 88 Onion Rest.Tea House 83 Oriental Express 83 Oriental House 83 Oriental Star 83 60 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

MAP #

Bar & Grill 16 Fine Dining 2 Upscale Casual 5 Home Style/Southern 12 Pizza 6, 11, 12 Sandwich/Deli 14 Asian/Vietnamese 8 Steakhouse 3, 13, 15 Mexican 12 Steakhouse 5 Steakhouse 6 Sandwich/Deli 3 Mexican 1, 6, 7, 10 Mexican 14 Sandwich/Deli 3 Pizza 6 Asian/Chinese 7 Asian/Chinese 4 Upscale Casual 1 European/Italian 1 Sandwich/Deli 16 Casual Dining 2 Pizza 15 Desserts/Bakery 1 Indian 2 Asian/Japanese 2 Asian/Thai 16 Sandwich/Deli 1 Casual Dining 14 Cafés 14 Upscale Casual 1 Mexican 4 Caribbean/Cuban 12 Asian/Chinese 5 Pizza 7 Casual Dining 1 Middle Eastern 1 Barbecue 2, 9, 13, 15 European/Italian 8 Casual Dining 1 Casual Dining 6, 8, 10 Mexican 1 Seafood 4 Sandwich/Deli 5, 6, 7, 11, 15 European/Italian 1 Upscale Casual 6 Cafés 3 Mexican 13 Bar & Grill 1 Seafood 13 Seafood 8 Southwest/Tex Mex 3, 6 European/Irish 2 Casual Dining 2 Steakhouse 1 Pizza 1, 4, 5, 6, 12, 13 Home Style/Southern 13 Cafés 1 Desserts/Bakery 4, 5 Entertainment Dining 12 Sandwich/Deli 5 Sandwich/Deli 2 Upscale Casual 3 Home Style/Southern 14 European/Bosnian 2 Upscale Casual 14 Bar & Grill 8 Asian/Chinese 8 Pizza 15 European/Greek 6 Sandwich/Deli 1 Cafés 2 Casual Dining 3,6,8,12,13,15 Home Style/Southern 13 European/Irish 2 Fine Dining 1 European/Italian 1 Upscale Casual 6 Barbecue 11 European/Italian 6 Home Style/Southern 1 Sandwich/Deli 1 Middle Eastern 2 Southwest/Tex Mex 8 Asian/Chinese 14 Asian/Chinese 9 Asian/Chinese 3 Asian/Chinese 12

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Osaka Sushi Bar 84 Oscar Brown’s Southbeach 68 Otto’s Café 74 Outback Steakhouse 70 Pa Pa Murphy’s Pizza 76 Palermo Viejo 86 Panda Chinese 83 Panera Bread Co. 78 Papa Johns Pizza 76 Papillon Grill & Bar 85 Park Place Restaurant 64 Parrott Beach 66 Pat’s Steak House 71 The Patron 66 Paul’s Fruit Market 78 Pearly’s Seafood 70 Peking City 83 Penn Station 78 Pepper Shaker Bar-B-Q 79 Perkfection 89 Pesto’s Italian 86 Petterson’s Bar-B-Q Barn 79 Piccadilly Cafeteria 75 Picnicaters BBQ 79 Pie in the Sky 76 Pigasus 79 Pit Stop Bar-B-Que 79 Pizza Box 76 Pizza By The Guy 76 Pizza Hut 76 Pizza King 76 Pizza Magia 76 Pizza Place 76 Plehn’s Bakery 89 Po-Boy Shoppe 78 Ponderosa Steakhouse 71 Porcini 86 Portico 64 Prospect Fish Market 70 The Pub Louisville 74 Puerto Vallarta 88 Qdoba Mexican Grill 88 Queen of Sheba 81 Queenie’s Pizza & Such 76 Quick Wok 83 Quizno’s Subs 78 R Place Pub 81 Rafferty’s of Louisville 74 Rainbow Blossom 89 Ramsi’s Café 68 Ranch House 74 Ray Parrella’s 86 Red Cheetah Lounge 66 Red Lounge 68 Red Star Tavern 66 Rendezvous Diner 74 Rich O’s Public House 81 Rick’s Ferrari Grille 66 Rincon Latino 88 River Grille 74 Roadway Wings 75 Rockwall Bistro 66 Rocky’s Italian Grill 86 Romano’s Macaroni Grill 86 Rosticeria Luna 88 Royal Garden 83 Rubbie’s Bar-B-Que 79 Ruby Tuesday 74 The Rudyard Kipling 74 Rufad’s Kebob 85 Rumors Raw Oyster Bar 70 Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse 71 Ryan’s Steakhouse 71 Saddle Ridge Saloon 81 Saffron’s 86 Safier Mediterranean Deli 86 Saint’s 81 Sakura Blue 84 Sala Thai 84 Sam’s Food & Spirits 74 Santa Fe Grill 88 Sapporo Japanese Grill 84 Sarajevo 85 Schlotzsky’s Deli 78 Scotty’s Ribs 79 Sesame Chinese 83 Shalimar Indian 86 Shane’s 74

MAP #

Asian/Japanese 2 Bistro/Contemporary 1 Casual Dining 1 Steakhouse 3, 8, 11, 12, 15 Pizza 3, 8, 11, 12 European/Spanish 2 Asian/Chinese 10 Sandwich/Deli 3, 6, 8 Pizza [30] European/Bosnian 2 Fine Dining 1 Upscale Casual 1 Steakhouse 2 Upscale Casual 3 Sandwich/Deli 3, 4, 7, 9 Seafood 7 Asian/Chinese 8 Sandwich/Deli [11] Barbecue 12 Coffee House 16 European/Italian 1 Barbecue 15 Cafeterias 5, 6 Barbecue 1 Pizza 6 Barbecue 14 Barbecue 1 Pizza 8 Pizza 5 Pizza [15] Pizza 14, 16 Pizza [13] Pizza 4 Desserts/Bakery 3 Sandwich/Deli 2 Steakhouse 7 European/Italian 2 Fine Dining 14 Seafood 10 Casual Dining 1 Mexican 14 Mexican 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, 15 African 4 Pizza 1 Asian/Chinese 1 Sandwich/Deli [15] Bar & Grill 12 Casual Dining 3, 8 Desserts/Bakery 8 Bistro/Contemporary 2 Casual Dining 14 European/Italian 2 Upscale Casual 1 Bistro/Contemporary 2 Upscale Casual 1 Casual Dining 2 Microbreweries 14 Upscale Casual 3 Mexican 8 Casual Dining 1 Home Style/Southern 13 Upscale Casual 14 European/Italian 16 European/Italian 5 Mexican 12 Asian/Chinese 12 Barbecue 12 Casual Dining 3, 6 Casual Dining 1 European/Bosnian 2 Seafood 9 Steakhouse 3 Steakhouse 11, 12, 13, 15 Bar & Grill 1 Middle Eastern 1 Middle Eastern 1 Bar & Grill 3 Asian/Japanese 3 Asian/Thai 6 Casual Dining 14 Mexican 12 Asian/Japanese 2, 9 European/Bosnian 11 Sandwich/Deli 8, 9, 12 Barbecue 9 Asian/Chinese 5 Indian 6 Casual Dining 10


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Shanghai Restaurant 83 Asian/Chinese 1 Shenanigan’s Irish Grille 85 European/Irish 2 Shogun 84 Asian/Japanese 6, 8 Shoney’s 74 Casual Dining 2, 6, 12 Sichuan Garden 83 Asian/Chinese 6 Skyline Chili 74 Casual Dining 1, 2, 3, 6, 13 Smokey Bones BBQ 79 Barbecue 6 Smokin BBQ 79 Barbecue 16 Soupy’s 78 Sandwich/Deli 4, 6, 8, 13 South Side Inn 75 Cafeterias 14 Spaghetti Shop 86 European/Italian 11, 14 Spinelli’s Pizzeria 76 Pizza 2 Sportstime Pizza 76 Pizza 14 Stan’s Fish Sandwich 70 Seafood 3 Star of Louisville 76 Ent. Dining 16 Starbucks Coffee 89 Coffee House [11] Starving Artist Café 78 Sandwich/Deli 5 Steak N Shake 74 Casual Dining 4,6,8,12,13,15 Steinert’s Grill & Pub 81 Bar & Grill 14 Stevens & Stevens 78 Sandwich/Deli 2 Stoney River 71 Steakhouse 8 Strawberry Patch Deli 78 Sandwich/Deli 9 Stumler Rest. & Orchard 76 Ent. Dining 14 Sub Station II 78 Sandwich/Deli 12 Sully’s Saloon 81 Bar & Grill 1 Sunergos Coffee & Roastery 89 Coffee House 1 Sweet ‘N’ Savory Café 69 Cafés 2 Sweet Surrender 89 Desserts/Bakery 2 The Sweet Tooth 89 Desserts/Bakery 3 Tacqueria La Mexicana 88 Mexican 12 Tailgaters Sports Bar 81 Bar & Grill 12 Taj India 86 Indian 6 Tequial Mexican Rest. 88 Mexican 12 Texas Roadhouse 71 Steakhouse 2, 12, 13, 15 TGI Friday’s 74 Casual Dining 1, 6, 7 Thai Café 84 Asian/Thai 7 Thai Kitchen 84 Asian/Thai 13 Thai Siam 84 Asian/Thai 4 Thai Smile 5 84 Asian/Thai 12 Thai Taste 85 Asian/Thai 2 The Other Place 74 Casual Dining 2 Third and Main Café 69 Cafés 1 Third Avenue Café 69 Cafés 1 Thyme Café 69 Cafés 1 Tijuana Flats Burrito Co. 88 Southwest/Tex Mex 7 Tokyo Japanese 84 Asian/Japanese 7 Toll Bridge Inn 75 Home Style/Southern 14 Tommy Lancaster 74 Casual Dining 14 Tony Boombozz 77 Pizza 2, 3 Tony Roma’s 79 Barbecue 5 Trellis Restaurant 74 Casual Dining 1 Trestle Sports Café 81 Bar & Grill 6 Tucker’s 74 Casual Dining 14 Tumbleweed 88 Southwest/Tex Mex 2,4, 6,8,12,13,14,15,16 Twiams Chicken & Waffles 74 Casual Dining 13 Twice-Told Café 76 Ent. Dining 7 Twig & Leaf Restaurant 74 Casual Dining 2 Two Guys and a Grill 78 Sandwich/Deli 7 Uno Chicago Bar & Grill 77 Pizza 11 Uptown Café 66 Upscale Casual 2 Vic’s Café 81 Bar & Grill 1 Vietnam Kitchen 85 Asian/Vietnamese 12 The Villa Buffet 74 Casual Dining 14 Vince Staten’s BBQ 79 Barbecue 10 Vincenzo’s 64 Fine Dining 1 Vito’s Pizzeria 77 Pizza 12 Volare 86 European/Italian 2 W.W. Cousin’s 78 Sandwich/Deli 3 Wagner’s Pharmacy 75 Home Style/Southern 12 Wall Street Deli 78 Sandwich/Deli 1 Wang’s Wok 83 Asian/Chinese 9 Webb’s Market 75 Home Style/Southern 1 Whitney’s Diner 69 Cafés 11 Wicks Pizza 77 Pizza 2, 8, 9, 13 Wild Oats Market 78 Sandwich/Deli 3 Willie’s Italian 86 European/Italian 13 Winston’s 64 Fine Dining 4 Wok Express 83 Asian/Chinese 1 Wonton Express 83 Asian/Chinese 4 Woodford Reserve Grille 81 Bar & Grill 12 Yaching’s East West Cuisine 66 Upscale Casual 1 Yang Kee Noodle 83 Asian/Chinese 5 Yen Ching 83 Asian/Chinese 6 You-Carryout-A 84 Asian/Chinese 14, 15, 16 ZaZoo’s 81 Bar & Grill 3 Zen Garden 85 Asian/Vietnamese 2 Z’s Oyster Bar 64 Fine Dining 5

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Great Casual Dining On Board!

café Now you can enjoy our incredible menu filled with favorites and signature dishes and still be close to all the action! Here’s just a taste of Caesars latest triumphs at Nero’s Café: Appetizers • Bistro Wings, Shrimp Cocktail, Loaded Potato Skins Favorites • All-American Burger, Philadelphia Cheese Steak, Prime Rib, Spaghetti Marinara with Meatballs, BBQ Ribs, Grilled Salmon, Crab Stuffed Shrimp Alfredo Asian Signatures • Crispy Chicken, Lo Mein, Chicken Teriyaki Desserts • Fried Banana Split, White Chocolate Cheesecake, Nero’s Chocolate Velour, or try it all with our Dessert Sampler! Wed., Thurs. & Sun., 4–11 p.m. • Fri. & Sat, 4–11:30 p.m. Closed Mon. & Tues. • Located on the 4th deck. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-9-WITH-IT.

caesarsindiana.com

1-888-766-2648

Just 20 minutes from Louisville


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UNLESS NOTED OTHERWISE, ALL RESTAURANTS ARE LOCATED IN LOUISVILLE. ALL KENTUCKY PHONE NUMBERS LISTED ARE IN THE 502 AREA CODE, INDIANA PHONE NUMBERS ARE IN THE 812 AREA CODE. RED DENOTES AN ADVERTISER.

$ $$ $$$ $$$$

p f

e

= = = = = = =

Average Entrée under $8 Average Entrée $9–$14 Average Entrée $15–$20 Average Entrée $21 & up Full Bar Outdoor Dining Live Music

211 CLOVER LANE RESTAURANT 211 Clover Ln., 896-9570. 211 Clover’s longtime manager Andy Smith now owns the place, but its upscale atmosphere and creative cuisine of this stylish spot in St. Matthews continue to rank it among the city’s top tables. $$$$ p f

LILLY’S 1147 Bardstown Rd., 451-0447. Chef Kathy Cary seems to spend as much time in New York City as she does in Louisville. As a repeat invitee to Manhattan’s James Beard House, she shares her Kentucky-accented cooking skills with the rest of the nation. Lilly’s combines style and Cary’s creative cookery to keep this landmark near the top of the city’s dining list. $$$$ p e THE OAKROOM 500 S. Fourth St. (Seelbach Hotel), 585-3200. In spite of recent personnel changes that saw Executive Chef Walter Lefler’s sudden departure early in 2005, Chef de Cuisine Todd Richards maintains the quality that has earned this elegant, historic hotel dining room its fourstar rating and status as a “must-visit” destination for visitors and locals alike. $$$$ p PARK PLACE RESTAURANT 401 E. Main St. (Slugger Field), 515-0172. With Anoosh Shariat as executive chef and Jerry Slater as GM, the signature restaurant in Louisville Slugger Field has moved beyond its origins as a steakhouse to join the city’s top tier of upscale dining rooms. $$$$ p f e PORTICO Caesars Indiana Casino, Elizabeth, IN, 888766-2648. High-end luxury and style bring a taste of Las Vegas to Metro Louisville in this pricey, white-tablecloth eatery located on the grounds of

Caesars Indiana. You don’t have to be a high roller to enjoy its luxury fare and service. $$$$ p VINCENZO’S 150 S. Fifth St., 580-1350. Known for its suavely professional service, high-end Northern Italian fare and some trademark dishes prepared at tableside, Vincenzo’s owns a place as one of Louisville’s top tables. $$$$ p WINSTON’S RESTAURANT 3101 Bardstown Rd., (Sullivan University Campus), 456-0980. Culinary arts students at Sullivan University staff this finedining restaurant on the campus, under the guiding hand of Chef John Castro. Several of the city’s top chefs got their training here. Open Fri. Sun. Only. Reservations suggested. $$$$ p Z’S OYSTER BAR & STEAKHOUSE 101 Whittington Pkwy., 429-8000. This exciting spot brings a level of fine dining to the suburbs that’s previously been hard to find outside the city. Armed with excellent, oversize steaks, extraordinary seafood, fine service and clubby ambience, Z’s thoroughly outguns the upscale steakhouse competition. $$$$ p

ARTEMISIA 620 E. Market St., 583-4177. As the bustling arts scene in this east-of-downtown

610 MAGNOLIA 610 Magnolia Ave., 636-0783. Chef Edward Lee’s distinctive, eclectic take on creative international cookery places his personal signature on every dish at this elegantly comfortable Old Louisville restaurant, which consistently ranks among the city’s top tables for food, drink and service. $$$$ p f BUCK’S 425 W. Ormsby Ave., 637-5284. Eclectic Victorian with tongue-slightly-in-cheek, pleasant and not overstated, this fine dining room on the ground floor of Old Louisville’s genteel old Mayflower Apartments combines a welcoming attitude with high-quality fare and atmosphere that’s frankly stunning. $$$ p e CAFÉ METRO 1700 Bardstown Rd., 458-4830. A local tradition that helped establish Bardstown Road as one of the city’s “restaurant rows” a generation ago, Café Metro remains an upscale landmark; current Chef Michael Crouch continues to please Metro’s loyal fans. $$$ p ENGLISH GRILL 335 W. Broadway (The Camberly Brown Hotel), 583-1234. This elegant oak-paneled dining room is the same downtown landmark that our parents and grandparents enjoyed. Chef Joe Castro continues to win raves for creative, inventive (and expensive) fare that makes the Brown a major player in the downtown-hotel dining sweepstakes. $$$$ p EQUUS 122 Sears Ave., 897-9721. Tucked away in a simple white-brick building, Equus is a block off the main drag in St. Matthews, but happy diners beat a path to its door. Very fine international cuisine, a stylish setting and first-rate service combine to make it one of the city’s top dining rooms. $$$$ p

winston’s

restaurant

THE FLAGSHIP 140 N. Fourth St., 589-5200. $$$$ e KUNZ’S FOURTH AND MARKET 115 S. Fourth St., 585-5555. One of the oldest restaurants in Louisville, Kunz’s has moved over the years to several downtown locations. Its original German accent has muted with time, and it no longer ranks among the city’s top tables, but it still provides old-fashioned, hearty steaks along with seafood and more modern fare. $$$ p LE RELAIS 2817 Taylorsville Rd. (Bowman Field), 4519020. Another longstanding contender for the city’s top table, this stylish art deco spot beautifully uses a historic 1920s airport building to present elegant modern French cuisine from Chef Daniel Stage. It’s not just the city’s best French restaurant but a contender for best of the region. $$$$ p f e

64 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

Sullivan University Campus 3101 Bardstown Road Louisville, KY 40205 Reservations are recommended

502-456-0980

Friday & Saturday Lunch 11 am - 2 pm Dinner 5:30 pm - 10 pm Sunday Brunch 9:30 am - 2 pm


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neighborhood has blossomed, Artemisia has evolved right along with it. A favorite dinner venue in a gallery setting, Artemisia offers fare to please both vegetarians and omnivores, plus an attractive alfresco dining option in its enclosed courtyard. $$$ p f e ASIATIQUE 1767 Bardstown Rd., 451-2749. Chef Peng Looi, who has won diners’ raves and many culinary awards during Asiatique’s long tenure in St. Matthews, transplanted his innovative Asianfusion restaurant to larger and even more striking quarters on the busy Bardstown Road corridor, where he has kicked things up still another notch. $$$ p f AUSTIN’S 4950 US 42, 423-1990. Big, crowded and bistro-style, with heavy emphasis on the bar, this suburban watering hole taps the same vein as the national franchise booze ‘n’ beef genre, and does so well, offering satisfying dining at a fair price. $$ p AVALON 1314 Bardstown Rd., 454-5336. Fresh American and international cuisine come together in this stylish Bardstown Road spot that has become a favorite. $$$ p AZALEA 3612 Brownsboro Rd., 895-5493. Another of the city’s longtime favorites, Azalea delights with creative American and fusion-style fare whether you dine in or enjoy the open air of its shady, brick-walled patio. $$$ p f

suburban neighborhood old favorite, but the term “eclectic” fits it well. $$ p ENCORE RESTAURANT AT ACTORS THEATRE 316 W. Main St., 561-3344. Not so much a destination restaurant as a decent place to dine before the theater. $$ p FUSION 1605 Story Ave., 582-1801. This good-size Butchertown spot has been home to a series of eateries, from the original “Dirty” Min’s cafeteria to Greek Paradise. Welcome the latest and fanciest tenant, Fusion, where former Bluegrass Brewing Co. chefs Chris Gibson and David Salvo present an eclectic mix of international cuisines along with a short, well-chosen wine list. $$$ p J. ALEXANDER’S RESTAURANT 102 Oxmoor Court, 339-2206. This comfortably upscale venue, a Nashville-based chain, features “contemporary American” fare with a broad menu that ranges from burgers and sandwiches to such upscale eats as grilled tuna or a New York strip steak. $$$ p J. HARROD’S 7507 Upper River Rd., 228-4555. J. Harrod’s is discreetly tasteful and pleasantly comfortable. The food is competitive in both quality and value. It’s an appealing, upscale blend of bistro fare and old-fashioned country cooking. $$$ p

JACK FRY’S 1007 Bardstown Rd., 452-9244. If you want to give visiting friends a one-shot sample of Louisville’s urban dining style, there’s no better destination than Jack Fry’s. This popular spot is always packed. It saves just a whiff of the raffish aspect of its 1960s-era predecessor, a local saloon, but upgrades it with creative American fare in a bistro setting. $$$$ p e JARFI’S BISTRO 501 W. Main St., 589-5060. The affable Jeff Jarfi is the eponymous host of this sharp, stylish venue in the Kentucky Center for the Arts. Eclectic cuisine—including sushi!—plus popular lunch and pre-theater buffets are attracting happy crowds. $$$ p JOHN E’S 3708 Bardstown Rd., 456-1111. This old Louisville tradition earns a warm recommendation. From its cozy setting in a historic Buechel home to its down-home service to its good Americanstyle fare at reasonable prices. $$$$ p e KT’S 2300 Lexington Rd., 458-8888. It’s hard to argue with success, and KT’s has earned its popularity by providing good American-style bar and bistro chow for a price that’s fair. $$ p f LIMESTONE 10001 Forest Green Blvd., 426-7477. To succeed in the restaurant business, keep doing

BLU ITALIAN MEDITERRANEAN GRILLE 280 W. Jefferson St. (Louisville Marriott), 671-4285. A buzz of excitement surrounds the opening of one of the nation’s top convention hotels; and the hotel’s signature restaurant is a big part of that. Offering upscale Italian Mediterranean cuisine in striking surroundings highlighted by Mexican limestone and Italian marble, BLU is on track to join the city’s top tables. For those seeking a relaxing libation and a quicker snack, the Bar at BLU offers a more casual alternative. $$$ p BRAVO! 206 Bullitt Ln. (Oxmoor Center), 326-0491. Management describes the Ohio-based Bravo! chain as “a fun, white-tablecloth casual eatery ... positioned between the fine-dining and casual chains.” A Roman-ruin setting houses abundant Italian-American style fare. We particularly enjoyed appetizers and first-rate grilled meats. $$ p f BRISTOL BAR & GRILLE 1321 Bardstown Rd., 4561702, 300 N. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 426-0627, 100 E. Jefferson St., 540-3214, 614 W. Main St., 582-1995, 2035 S. Third St., 634-2723. The Bristol has been a star on Louisville’s bistro scene since it helped kick off the Bardstown Road restaurant renaissance some 25 years ago. Old standards like the green-chile won tons and the Bristol Burger are always reliable, and the wine program is exceptional. $$ p f CAFÉ EMILIE 3939 Shelbyville Rd., 719-9717. Tucked into a corner of a tasteful furniture shop, Café Emilie is worth a visit. This French-accented East End eatery is a recent and welcome addition to the neighborhood’s casual dining options. $$ f CLUB GROTTO 2116 Bardstown Rd., 459-5275. International touches by Chef Kristopher Bates make Club Grotto’s bill of fare memorable. Its comfortable, romantically dim and stylish environs and excellent service add value points. Sometimes overlooked, but worth making a special effort to remember. $$$ p COACH LAMP RESTAURANT 751 Vine St., 583-9165. This urban neighborhood tavern serves “pub grub” for lunch, but Coach Lamp turns into a serious dining room Wednesday through Saturday evenings with well-prepared dishes that range from down-home favorites to pastas. With former Brown Hotel Chef Jerome Pope in the kitchen, this is a place to watch. $$$ CORNER CAFÉ 9307 New Lagrange Rd., 426-8119. There’s nothing fancy or overly elegant about this www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 65


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what you do best. Chefs Jim Gerhardt and Michael Cunha have followed this simple formula with considerable success at Limestone, transporting the concept that brought them international culinary kudos at the Seelbach’s Oakroom with good effect in these modern quarters in the East End. $$$ p

NERO’S Caesars Indiana Casino, Elizabeth, IN, 888766-2648. Joining Portico as the second high-end, fine-dining restaurant at Caesar’s Indiana, Nero’s complements Portico’s all-American steak-andseafood theme with a broader international menu that ranges from Tuscan fettuccini to Memphis BBQ pork ribs. $$$ p

LUCKY STRIKE LANES / FELT Fourth Street Live, 560-1400. An upscale bowling alley? A classy poolroom? Who knew! These twin concepts from Jillian’s founders Stephen and Gillian Foster light up Fourth Street Live with a stylish blend of ’50sstyle retro and high-tech modern, plus a menu by General Manager & Executive Chef David Himmel that serves both establishments with much more than mere bar food. $$ p f

OLD STONE INN 6905 Shelbyville Rd., Simpsonville, KY, (502) 722-8200. This historic stone building east of Louisville in Simpsonville, housed a popular restaurant for more than a generation. After a brief resurrection by Simpsonville’s sausage-making Purnell family, it is now under the management of Paul Crump, formerly of Porcini. Crump’s skills and the comfortably nostalgic atmosphere make this a hot spot. $$$ p f

MAKER’S MARK BOURBON HOUSE & LOUNGE Fourth Street Live, 568-9009. Under a licensing agreement with the management of Fourth Street Live, Kentucky’s Maker’s Mark Distillery lends its name and its signature red-wax image to this stylish restaurant and lounge in the booming downtown entertainment complex. The draw is a magisterial bar featuring more than 60 Bourbons, along with an attractive menu featuring traditional Kentucky fare $$$ p f

PARROTT BEACH Fourth Street Live, 589-5336. $$ pf e

MELTING POT 2045 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 491-3125. This Florida-based chain brings back pleasant memories of fondue parties of the ’70s. If you can melt it and dip things in it, the Melting Pot probably has it on the menu. $$$ p NAPA RIVER GRILL 3938 Dupont Circle, 893-0141. Spanning California and the Pacific Rim, this starkly modern St. Matthews venue has earned its reputation as one of the city’s top tables on the basis of consistent, top-quality fare and excellent service. Innovative wine-country cuisine prepared with skill combines with a well-chosen, fairly priced wine collection that showcases the California wine scene. $$$ p f

THE PATRON 3400 Frankfort Ave., 896-1661. Viewed from the perspective of an evening meal, the Patron offers some of the best cooking in town. Chef Amber McCool offers a dinner menu that changes frequently, based on what’s available and perhaps the chef’s whim. It’s not just adventurous but civilized. $

first restaurant that bore his name. Look for the same familiar combination of excellent libations and upscale American fare. $$ p f e ROCKWALL BISTRO 3426 Paoli Pike, Floyds Knobs, IN., 948-1705. This stylish spot takes full advantage of an old rock-quarry location in scenic Floyds Knobs to offer an atmospheric eatery, with a creative menu that features a light Louisiana accent, and an interesting, affordable wine list. It’s well worth the 15-minute trip across the Ohio for one of the metro area’s most enjoyable dining experiences. $$ p f UPTOWN CAFÉ 1624 Bardstown Rd., 458-4212. Across the street and a step downscale from its partner, Café Metro, the Uptown Café (now a nonsmoking venue except for the bar) offers similar fare with a bit more of a bistro feel for quite a few bucks less. $$ p f YACHING’S EAST WEST CUISINE 105 S. Fourth St., 585-4005. Restaurateur Laura Tao’s stylish downtown restaurant promises “an eclectic menu of contemporary Asian fusion cuisine.” It’s an attractive mix of East and West, sufficient to give just about everyone something to enjoy, regardless of which compass point attracts your taste buds. $$$ p

RED CHEETAH LOUNGE Fourth Street Live, 5890695. $$ p e RED STAR TAVERN Fourth Street Live, 568-5656. Billed as “a hip, contemporary version of the classic American tavern,” this new chain operation in the rehabilitated former Galleria features steaks, chops and seafood in an atmosphere that’s upscale and clubby, with an extensive bar as a key part of the action. $$$ p f RICK’S FERRARI GRILLE 3930 Chenoweth Ln., 8930106. Sometimes things come full circle, and sometimes we’re very glad. Popular local restaurateur Rick Dissell has returned to his original home, returning the name “Rick’s” to the

316 ORMSBY 316 Ormsby Ave., 637-9899. More than just another neighborhood café, this stylish spot in an attractive Old Louisville building offers a nice blend of comfort and sophistication. Co-owners Tony Efstratiadis and Kevin Thompson, who boast kitchen experience at Napa River Grill, show off their skills with a nicely balanced formula that’s plain enough for a quick lunch, and fancy enough for a weekend date destination. $$ p f e ATRIUM CAFÉ 9940 Corporate Campus Dr. (Embassy Suites), 426-9191. An eclectic bistro

LO U I SV I L L E ’S G O N E MEDITERRANEAN. BLU is an elegant Downtown dining experience, offering sun-drenched Italian, French & Spanish cuisine.

280 W. Jefferson St. 502.627.5045

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atmosphere in the spacious heart of the hotel. Specials run from their popular crab cakes and array of pasta dishes to a Reuben sandwich or fruit pie. $$ p BAXTER STATION BAR & GRILL 1201 Payne St., 584-1635. This cozy spot looks a lot like a neighborhood saloon, but the eclectic menu and unique atmosphere (a railroad theme and airy patio in season) take it a notch upscale. Take particular note of an impressive beer list to go with your meal. $$ p f CAFÉ LOU LOU 1800 Frankfort Ave., 893-7776. Bright and bold and artsy, this Clifton neighborhood restaurant and pub offers Chef Clay Wallace’s affordable edibles from wraps and calzones to handmade pizzas among the best in town. $$ f DEKE’S MARKETPLACE GRILL 301 W. Market St., 584-8337. It starts as a downtown bar, a favorite hangout for lawyers and the Courthouse crowd, but Deke’s goes beyond the obvious to offer steaks, burgers, pasta dishes and more. The decoera architecture adds to the soul of each appetizer and entrée. $$$ p f DIAMANTE 2280 Bardstown Rd., 456-1705. Chef Mike Driskell, formerly of Club Grotto, has upgraded the old Diamond Station bar and moved it significantly upscale with this new concept, which features an eclectic bill of fare and trendy libations in an attractive modern setting. $$ f

NORTH END CAFE & BAR

DITTO’S GRILL 1114 Bardstown Rd., 581-9129. The bill of fare offers a large and eclectic selection that ranges from bar-food munchies to an appetizing mix of exotic items and down-home dishes like Mom used to make. $$ p HARD ROCK CAFÉ Fourth Street Live, 568-2202. Louisville’s Fourth Street Live opened with a bang amid hammering guitars and happy throngs as the city gained its first branch of this popular shrine to rock with its giant neon guitar to show you the way. The music scene is the draw, but you’ll have no complaints about Hard Rock’s standard American cuisine. $$ p f e HARPER’S RESTAURANT 871 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 425-2900. Harper’s draws a happy crowd of regulars with a large bar and big menu that offers a wide range of American-style fare, with management that takes quality seriously. Gourmet pizzas and fine libations are a specialty. $$ p f JACK’S LOUNGE 122 Sears Ave., 897-9026. A sophisticated, elegant bar associated with the Equus restaurant next door, Jack’s offers a short but excellent menu featuring appetizers and light bites, along with a drinks list beyond reproach. $ p

Happy Hour Everyday 3 6

Sun–Wed 7am–12am Thurs–Sat 7am–2am 1722 Frankfort Avenue

502.896.8770

JAZZ FACTORY 815 W. Market St. (Glassworks), 992-3242. Louisville’s restored Glassworks building makes a natural home for this edgy, stylish venue for serious, live jazz. Chef Jeff Jarfi’s eclectic and innovative fare offers an extra incentive for a jazz-filled evening. $$ p e L&N WINE BAR AND BISTRO 1765 Mellwood Ave., 897-0070. If you’re enthusiastic about good wine, you’re going to be excited about L&N Wine Bar and Bistro. The fruit of the vine takes center stage in a vast, fairly priced wine list and imposing Cruvinet dispenser, with over 100 wines available by the glass. Comfortable exposed-brick atmosphere and excellent bistro fare add to the draw. $$ p LA PECHE II Holiday Manor Shopping Center, 3397593. If you want to enjoy much-honored Chef Kathy Cary’s imaginative cooking without paying the prices at Lilly’s, this sibling spot is the place to go. $$ f LEANDER’S ON OAK 1160 S. First St., 569-6981. Once an Old Louisville neighborhood market, this attractively renovated storefront is operated by

BREAKFAST

LUNCH

DINNER

PRIVA TE DINING

CA TERING

L OUNGE

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restaurateurs Nick Layman and Amy Tuinstra, who bring experience in Chicago and Texas to bear in Old Louisville. The eatery offers Chef Charlie Owen’s eclectic American casual bill of fare with international accents. $$ p

CAFÉ FRAICHE 3642 Brownsboro Rd., 894-8929. Cuisine from around the world is featured at this East End neighborhood café, featuring homemade soups, breads and a variety of entrees on a seasonally changing menu. $

OSCAR BROWN’S SOUTHBEACH STATION 252 E. Market St., 581-1222. Chef Nick Sundberg features an American bistro style at his casual-upscale restaurant in the increasingly active east downtown neighborhood. His menu showcases Caribbean influences from Cuba, Jamaica and Trinidad (plus a few regional items). $$ p e

CAFÉ J 3600 Dutchmans Ln. (Jewish Community Center), 459-0660. This authentic delicatessen in the Jewish Community Center carefully follows traditional requirements to ensure fully kosher fare, Homemade soups, salads and wide-ranging hot entrees are available. $ f

RAMSI’S CAFÉ ON THE WORLD 1293 Bardstown Rd., 451-0700. Small, funky and fun, this favorite spot of the Highlands’ Generation X crowd attracts foodies of all ages with its friendly setting, reasonable prices and well-prepared international cuisine. $$ RED LOUNGE 2106 Frankfort Ave., 896-6116. It’s loud. It’s smoky. It’s slick and glitzy and fun. Red Lounge is a bar first and an eatery second, but the fare, a short list of gourmet pub grub, is very good. $ p f e

ALLEY CAT CAFÉ 11804 Shelbyville Rd., 245-6544. This suburban Alley Cat is a cozy and bright little place, and the lunch-only menu is affordable and appealing. $

Wine Spectator “Award of Excellence” Since 1999

Your Solution for Exquisite and Elegant Entertaining

APPLEBY’S CAFÉ AND CATERING 201 Spring St., Jeffersonville, IN, 283-3663. This café and catering business offers a variety of daily lunch specials plus gourmet coffees and a tempting array of desserts. $ f AROMA CAFÉ Caesars Indiana Casino, Elizabeth, IN, 888-766-2648. Grab a bite before hitting the casino. Sandwiches, salads, sides, cold beverages and coffee will fuel you for a night of entertainment. $ BEG FOR MORE CAFÉ 380-0085. $

8402 National Turnpike,

BLUE DOG BAKERY AND CAFÉ 2868 Frankfort Ave., 899-9800. This bakery with its $50,000 Spanish wood-fired oven makes artisanal bread as good as you’ll find in the US, and competitive with the best in Europe. Its comfortable, upscale café offers a short selection of tasty dishes made to show off the fine breads. $$ f BLUE PEPPERMILL CAFÉ 1882 Blackiston Mill Rd., Clarksville, IN., 945-5830. Any city would be lucky to have this superb little bistro with a Hoosier twist. The fare ranges from down-home to upscale. The atmosphere is happy and bright; the service personal and quick. It’s a bit hidden away, but worth the search. $$ p BLUEGRASS CAFÉ 3255 Bardstown Rd. (Quality Inn), 454-0451. This casual family dining spot in a motel complex on Bardstown offers traditional favorites that range from the Hot Brown to fried chicken. A menu of freshly made soups, salads, appetizers and desserts serves the light diner. $ p

Dinner Served Monday thru Thursday 5:00 - 10:00 pm Friday and Saturday 5:00 - 11:00 pm Sunday 5:00 - 9:00 pm Private Dining Room Available Accommodating Parties Up To 60 Guests Reservations (502) 459-5275 2116 Bardstown Road 68 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

BULLDOG CAFÉ 10619 W. Manslick Rd., 380-0600. $fe THE BUTTERFLY GARDEN CAFÉ 1325 Bardstown Rd., 456-4500. Tiny but tastefully attractive, this little café is hidden at the back of a Victorian house filled with gift shops that share a quaint, welcoming ambience. $ f THE CAFÉ AT THE LOUISVILLE ANTIQUE MALL 900 Goss Ave., 637-6869. One of the city’s most attractive spots for antique and junque-shopping, this cavernous old factory building on Goss Avenue offers a similarly attractive place to catch lunch while you shop, offering a selection of competently made luncheon fare. $ CAFÉ EMILIE 3939 Shelbyville Rd., 719-9717. (see listing under Upscale Casual)

CHEDDAR BOX CAFÉ 12121 Shelbyville Rd., 2452622, 3909 Chenoweth Sq., 893-2324. Ladies who lunch often do so here, lured by an attractive selection of luncheon fare that ranges from soups and salads to tasty sandwiches ... and, it goes without saying, desserts. $ f CITY CAFÉ 1907 S. Fourth St., 635-0222, 505 W. Broadway, 589-1797, 1250 Bardstown Rd., 4595600, 500 S. Preston St., 852-5739. Chef Jim Henry, a long-time star in the city’s culinary firmament, brings his cooking skills and insistence on fresh, quality ingredients to this growing local chain of quick, simple but excellent spots for lunch. $ f CUTTING BOARD CAFÉ 2905 Goose Creek Rd., 4239950. There’s a lot of potential in this East End storefront. Management’s interest in food extends to having the cable FoodTV channel on the tube in its simple, spartan dining room. The bill of fare is mostly sandwiches, panini and wraps, but they’re creative and generally well-made. $ CYCLERS CAFÉ 2295 Lexington Rd., 451-5152. Is it a bicycle shop or a restaurant? Well, it’s both. This informal spot will sell you a first-rate sandwich, soup or salad or a tire for your bike—or the whole darn bike! $ f DERBY CAFÉ 704 Central Ave. (Kentucky Derby Museum), 634-0858. Lunch served year-round in the dining area adjacent to the Derby Museum with such regional favorites as meaty Burgoo, and the Hot Brown. $ f DERBY CITY CAFÉ BY DALAL 3819 Bardstown Rd., 454-6160. Most of the dining crowd comes for the cream cheese and olive sandwiches, veggie pockets and Kentucky’s own Benedictine creations. $ DIEFENBACH CAFÉ 128 S. New Albany St., Sellersburg IN, 246-0686. $$ p e DIXIE CUP CAFÉ 4637 Dixie Hwy., 448-6999. A welcoming spot on Dixie near the Watterson Expressway. Although it’s billed as a “gourmet coffee shop,” warming chili, soups and salads and alluring desserts make it a full-scale lunch destination. $ ERMIN’S FRENCH BAKERY & CAFÉ 1201 S. First St., 635-6960, 723 S. Fourth St., 587-9390, 454 S. Fourth Ave., 585-5120, 9550 U.S. Hwy 42, 2287210, 211 E. Main St., New Albany, IN, 941-8674. Founded by an immigrant baker from Bosnia who has since moved on, these popular bakeries still attract crowds looking for an enjoyable soup and sandwich lunch highlighted by French-style breads and pastries. $ FEDERAL HILL 310 Pearl St., New Albany IN, 9486646. $ f GARDEN ROOM CAFÉ 911 S. Brook St., 625-1900. Louisville’s historic Male High School has come back to life as The Spectrum Building, an office complex, and its onetime cafeteria now houses Gumby’s Garden Room Café, an attractive, casual American-style restaurant operated by longtime local caterer Phyllis “Gumby” Cornwell. $ f GERMANTOWN CAFÉ 1053 Goss Ave., 637-9412. One of the many old-fashioned, simple and welcoming bars serving pub grub in Louisville’s old Germantown neighborhood is as good a spot as any for a hot burger and a cold beer. $ p f e


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GOURMET GRAZING 9550 US 42, 228-0464. This Prospect Point eatery offers a variety of pastas, crab cakes, salmon, sandwiches and desserts for carry out from its well-stocked catering cases. $ f GRAPEVINE PANTRY & GIFT SHOP 11418 Old Main St., Middletown, KY, 245-1569. Off the beaten path, the Middletown Historic District is booming with bucolic storefronts, restaurants and a laid back glimpse of the past. The Grapevine Pantry serves up homemade soups, sandwiches and salads, and a selection of cakes and pies. $ J. GRAHAM’S CAFÉ & BAR 335 W. Broadway (The Camberly Brown Hotel), 583-1234. The Brown’s casual café offers an alternative to the pricey and upscale English Grill. $ p LA PETIT PATISSERIE 1036 E. Burnette Ave., 6343004. A Butchertown landmark has changed hands as the old family-run Heitzmann’s Bakery assumes an upscale look and a fancy French name under new management. There’s a short sandwich menu and a remarkable collection of soft drinks, but the Patisserie aptly shines in the pastry department with its memorable desserts. $ MAIN ST. GRIND 155 E. Main St., New Albany, IN, 944-2326. $ MERIDIAN CAFÉ 112 Meridian Ave., 897-9703. This little lunch spot occupies a cozy old house in St. Matthews. Service is competent and polite, the place is sparkling clean, and the luncheon-style fare ranges from good to excellent. $ MR. Z’S KITCHEN 869 S. Third St., 584-8504. It’s run by a friendly immigrant family from Eastern Europe, but the food is all-American at Mr. Z’s Kitchen. It offers an appetizing option for a hearty diner-style meal. $ NORTH END CAFÉ 1722 Frankfort Ave., 896-8770. This atmospheric Clifton spot in an artfully redesigned old shotgun house has become one of the city’s most popular spots, prompting a recent expansion and the addition of a full bar. The eclectis menu offers diverse tapas and interesting entrees, plus a bargain-seeker’s wine list. It’s an appealing, affordable place to dine. $ f SWEET ‘N’ SAVORY CAFÉ 1574 Bardstown Rd., 456-6566. Hearty brunch fare with a vegetarian accent makes Sweet ‘n’ Savory a popular destination for the Bardstown Road bunch. $ THIRD AND MAIN CAFÉ 220 W. Main St., 587-6171. $ f THIRD AVENUE CAFÉ 1164 South Third St., 585-2233. One of my favorite places for a casual meal, this exceptionally pleasant neighborhood eatery is attracting loyal crowds with excellent fare and a cozy setting that brings you back for more. $$ p f e THYME CAFÉ 711 S. Third St., 587-0400. This spicy eclectic café serves up big taste with special tuna, ham and chicken entrees and sandwiches. Fresh basil tomato soup with the BLT on grilled sourdough is a fast-rising favorite in the neighborhood. $ WHITNEY’S DINER 5616 Bardstown Rd., 239-0919. $f

BONEFISH GRILL 657 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 4124666. This franchise concept from the Floridabased Outback Steakhouse chain offers impressive seafood in a comfortable setting. Add Bonefish to your short list of suburban chain eateries that do the job right. $$$ p CAROLINA SHRIMP & SEAFOOD 3922 Westport Rd., 894-8947. In an East End neighborhood rich with seafood eateries, Carolina offers a tasty option within walking distance of downtown St. Matthews. This spartan little joint features shellfish and cod, much of it healthfully steamed, not fried, in an affordable family setting. $ www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 69


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CLARKSVILLE SEAFOOD 916 Eastern Blvd., Clarksville, IN, 283-8588. As the only surviving descendant of Louisville’s old Cape Codder chain, Clarksville Seafood upholds a long and honorable tradition. The menu is simple—fried fish and fried seafood, served on paper trays—but it is consistently excellent and affordable. $ THE FISH HOUSE 1310 Winter Ave., 568-2993. Louisville is as overflowing as a well-stocked lake with fish-sandwich houses, and The Fish House is right up there with the best. Crisp breading laced with black pepper is the signature of Green River fried fish from Western Kentucky. $ f THE FISH HUT 550 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd., 585-3474. If this trailer’s not fryin’, you’ll go away cryin’. Known for their fried catfish, the only thing missing from this little fry shanty is a pond out back. $ f

RUMORS RESTAURANT & RAW BAR 12339 Shelbyville Rd., 245-0366. Visualize Hooter’s without the scantily-clad waitresses, and you’ve drawn a bead on Rumor’s, the original Louisville home of the bucket-of-oysters and impressive raw bar. $$ p f STAN’S FISH SANDWICH 3723 Lexington Rd., 8966600. The fish is the thing at Stan’s, where the owner is a perfectionist who won’t sell any but the freshest fish, perfectly prepared. I’ve never had a better fish sandwich anywhere. Watch for daily specials that take advantage of fresh product. $

THE FISHERY 3624 Lexington Rd., 895-1188. The original fried-fish eatery in a neighborhood that’s now awash with them, The Fishery remains justly popular for its quick, sizzling hot and affordable fish and seafood meals. $ f

Z’S OYSTER BAR & STEAKHOUSE (see listing under Fine Dining)

THE FISHERY STATION 5627 Outer Loop, 968-8363. Family owned and family style dining with a wide net of seafood dinners and appetizers. Lunch and dinner menus also include such delicacies as frog legs, shrimp and alligator. For the landlubbers there are cheeseburgers and fries. $ p

BABBY’S STEAKHOUSE 108 S. Fourth St., Utica, IN., 288-2411. This independent-minded steakhouse is one of the metro area’s best values for expertly prepared steaks. They come in all the usual sizes and configurations, but someone in the kitchen has definite opinions about seasoning and grilling. The result is a distinctive approach that rewards a visit. $$ f

JOE’S CRAB SHACK 131 River Rd., 568-1171. The fake crab shack setting is bright, noisy and fun, and the servers keep everyone entertained. But the food is the bottom line, and I’m pleased to report that we’ve found the seafood at Joe’s uniformly fresh and fine. $$ p f JOJO’S FISH MARKET 2902 Bardstown Rd., 4517100. This small Highlands shop, vacant since the closing of the short-lived Highland Fish Market, is frying fish again, with decor and style so little changed that they’re still using the same sign out front. Fried fish sandwiches, oversize fish tacos and other seafood goodies are first-rate and fairly priced. $ KINGFISH RESTAURANT 3021 Upper River Rd., 895-0544, 3401 Bardstown Rd., 459-1432, 7483 Dixie Hwy., 933-3474, 1610 Kentucky Mills Dr., 2400700, 601 W. Riverside Dr., Jeffersonville, IN, 2843474. Fried fish in a family dining setting has made this local chain a popular favorite for many years. Two of its properties—upper River Road and Riverside Drive—boast river views. $$ p f MAZZONI’S OYSTER CAFÉ 2804 Taylorsville Rd., 451-4436. A history that dates to 1884 makes Mazzoni’s one of the city’s longest-running restaurant acts. It moved from downtown to the suburbs a generation ago, but kept its historic serving bar and its urban feeling, with pub grub, cold beer and the famous rolled oyster. $ MIKE LINNIG’S 9308 Cane Run Rd., 937-1235. Mike Linnig’s has been dishing up tasty fried fish and seafood at family prices since 1925 and remains immensely popular. There’s indoor seating and a bar, but the picnic grove with its giant shade trees makes Linnig’s a special place in season. $ f MITCHELL’S FISH MARKET 4031 Summit Plaza Dr., 412-1818. The decor of this upscale, Columbusbased chain evokes the feeling of a large fish market, with an open kitchen that offers views of chefs at work. Quality seafood and service has made this a popular destination, and everything we’ve tried here has been fresh and wellprepared. $$$ p f PEARLY’S SEAFOOD 6301 Upper River Rd., 2283625. The cozy old creekside quarters that long housed Bus Parson’s has received a make-over that gives the place an inviting Key West look. The menu has been kicked up a notch, too, with such goodies as conch fritters and bouillabaisse added to the familiar fried seafood and fish. $$ p f 70 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

PROSPECT FISH MARKET 9521A US 42, Prospect, 228-6962. A great place to get an oyster, a seafood dinner or a fine fried-fish sandwich. And if you’re on the eastern edge of the metropolitan area, Prospect Fish Market offers good, affordable fish in a pleasant shopping-center setting. $

DEL FRISCO’S 4107 Oechsli Ave., 897-7077. Once ranked among the city’s top steakhouses, Del Frisco’s remains strong in its core competency. For deeply marbled, fork-tender prime steaks, it’s still hard to beat on quality points. $$$$ p DILLON’S STEAKHOUSE 2101 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy, 499-7106. Dillon’s has a distinctly different atmosphere from more pricey steakhouses, with its ski-lodge atmosphere in a historic Louisville home. It ranks among the most affordable quality steak dinners that the city has to offer. $$ p FIFTH QUARTER STEAKHOUSE 1241 Durrett Ln., 3612363. The Fifth Quarter has that touch of class that evokes family nostalgia and romantic interludes. An attentive staff serves the sirloin your way. Some of the city’s best ivory masters are at the piano to enhance the dining experience. $$$ p f e FRANK’S STEAK HOUSE 520 W. Seventh St., Jeffersonville IN, 283-3383. A longtime north-ofthe-river favorite, this neighborhood steak house is known for comfort and hearty meals without pomp or circumstance. $$ p LOGAN’S ROADHOUSE 5055 Shelbyville Rd., 8933884, 5229 Dixie Hwy., 448-0577, 970 Hwy. 131, Clarksville, IN, 288-9789. With more than 100 properties in 17 states, this Nashville-based chain parlays peanut shells on the floor and steaks on the table into a popular formula. $$ p LONE STAR STEAKHOUSE & SALOON 340 Whittington Pkwy., 339-9495. Lone Star rises above the median for franchised chain establishments on the basis of popularity and style and very friendly service, with decent grub amid Texas-style surroundings and country music. $$ p f LONGHORN STEAKHOUSE 2535 Hurstbourne Ln., 671-5350. Order your sirloin on the flat-top or pork chops on the char; also prime rib, baby back ribs and a complete line of chicken entrees. All dinners come with salad and potato choice. $$ p MORTON’S 626 W. Main St., 584-0421. The steaks are as good as it gets, the atmosphere is elegant without being stuffy, and the service is outstanding. This downtown outpost of a Chicago chain earns a solid three stars and ranks among the top tier of Louisville’s upscale dining choices. $$$$ p OUTBACK STEAK HOUSE 4621 Shelbyville Rd., 8954329, 6520 Signature Dr., 964-8383, 9498


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Brownsboro Rd., 426-4329, 8101 Bardstown Rd., 231-2399, 1420 Park Place, Clarksville, IN, 2834329. The name suggests Australia, and so does the shtick at this popular national chain, but the food is pretty much familiar American, and the fare goes beyond just steak to take in chicken, seafood and pasta. $$$ p PAT’S STEAK HOUSE 2437 Brownsboro Rd., 8969234. A visit to Pat’s may not be exactly like a trip back to the ‘50s, but when I ate there last, I think I saw Ozzie and Harriet. A local favorite, its combination of quality beef and hospitality rank it among the best steak houses in town. Bring cash: No credit cards accepted. $$$$ p

SANDWICHES HOMEMADE DESSER TS STEAKS FRESH SEAFOOD PASTAS SALADS 12 BEERS ON TAP DAILY SPECIALS

Deke says, “Join us downtown for great food and libations!”

Celebrating 55 years as Louisville’s hometown favorite for top quality seafood and much, much more.

PONDEROSA STEAKHOUSE 11470 S. Preston Hwy., 964-6117, 816 S. KY 53, La Grange, KY, 222-1226. Family-style dining with the ranch theme kept alive with the open flame from the grills. An extensive buffet with hot and cold foods, salads and desserts is also available. $ RUTH’S CHRIS STEAKHOUSE 6100 Dutchman’s Ln. (Kaden Tower), 479-0026. The Robb Report magazine has declared Rolex the world’s best watch, Armani the best men’s suit, Cohiba the best cigar and Ruth’s Chris the best restaurant. It serves an excellent steak in an atmosphere of elegance that will make you feel pampered, at a price to match. $$$$ p RYAN’S FAMILY STEAKHOUSE 7405 Preston Hwy., 964-1748, 5338 Bardstown Rd., 491-1088, 4711 Dixie Hwy., 447-4781, 636 Eastern Blvd., Clarksville, IN, 282-8520. This popular North Carolina-based chain offers family dining with good variety: Its diverse and extensive buffet features over 150 items. $ STONEY RIVER LEGENDARY STEAK 3900 Summit Plaza Dr., 429-8944. Stoney River in the sprawling Springhurst shopping center is one of the chain’s first properties outside its Georgia home. It draws big crowds with its memorable steaks and trimmings, with extra points for friendly service and a comfortable atmosphere. $$$ p

Free Lunch Delivery Downtown Call for Delivery Area

FOUR CONVENIENT LOCATIONS: On the River: 3021 Upper River Road ■ 895-0544 (Just east of Zorn Ave @ I-71) Corner of Third & Market 301 West Market Street • 584-8337

601 W. Riverside ■ 284-3474 (On the Jeffersonville riverfront across from Louisville)

Around Town:

Dine In, Carry Out or Delivery - Outdoor Dining

3401 Bardstown Road ■ 459-1432

11AM - 10PM Monday thru Thursday 11AM - 11PM Friday and Saturday

1610 Kentucky Mills Dr. ■ 240-0700

Happy Hour 4PM - 7PM Monday thru Friday

(Blankenbaker @ 1-64)

TEXAS ROADHOUSE Green Tree Mall, Clarksville, IN, 280-1103, 4406 Dixie Hwy. 448-0705, 6460 Dutchman’s Pkwy., 897-5005, 3322 Outer Loop, 962-7600. The spirit of the West sets the theme for this popular steak house. Salads, vegetables and breads with hearty side dishes round out your meal options. This is family-style dining, with no tray sliding—service at your table. $$ p TUMBLEWEED SOUTHWEST GRILL (19 locations) (see listing under Southwest/Tex Mex) Z’S OYSTER BAR & STEAKHOUSE (see listing under Fine Dining)

GREAT VIEW OF THE OHIO RIVER A NICE RESTAURANT 3105 Blackiston Mill Rd., New Albany IN, 945-4321, 2784 Meijer Dr., 280-9160. A Nice Restaurant, billed as “New Albany’s Finer Diner,” is, well, nice. This sunny corner shop in the Old Mill Shopping Center specializes in breakfast and lunch. The fare is down-home and simple, at a price you can afford. $ ANYTIMES AT THE RAMADA INN 1041 Zorn Ave., 897-5101. Serving dinners only, the spacious restaurant opens at 4 p.m. and begins serving appetizers, salads, entrees and desserts. A steak dinner is billed as the specialty of the house. $$ p APPLEBEE’S (9 locations) This cheery national chain features an eclectic assortment of salads, steaks, ribs, poultry and pasta as well as full bar service. It’s as consistent as a cookie cutter, but competent execution makes it a good bargain for those whose tastes run to mainstream American cuisine. $$ p BENTLEY’S 120 W. Broadway (Holiday Inn), 5822241. Enjoy a Kentucky hot brown or the all-youcan-eat prime rib buffet on Saturday nights. Each

(Located six blocks from the Kennedy Bridge)

Casual Dining at its Best Daily Lunch, Dinner and Drink Specials

1 Domestic Longnecks

$

Sunday, Monday & Thursday

Karaoke with R/T Express Tuesday, Friday & Saturday 100 W. Riverside Drive • Jeffersonville, IN • 282-2500 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 71


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day features a pasta dish, a hearty soup and salad bar, as well as favorites from the cutting board and grill. $$ p e BIG HOPP’S 800 W. Market St., 589-6600. A wide variety of family-style fare, from fettuccine alfredo to fried chicken, is dished up with friendly, welcoming service at this popular local spot, now in modern quarters in the busy Glassworks district. $ p f BUCKHEAD MOUNTAIN GRILL 3008 Bardstown Rd., 456-6680, 4112 Outer Loop, 966-5555, 10430 Shelbyville Rd., 245-6680, 707 W. Riverside Dr., Jeffersonville IN, 284-2919. Despite a mountain lodge theme that might make you think of the Colorado Rockies, this growing chain is based in Louisville. Upscale bar food and a sizable bar to match make these popular destinations. $$ p f BULL FROG GARDEN 5440 Del Maria Way 4990393. Another of Louisville’s hidden secrets, this family eatery in the Fern Creek area is popular with its neighbors and is earning a broader reputation for pub grub at reasonable prices, prepared with care and served in a friendly setting. $$ p e CAPTAIN’S QUARTERS 5700 Captain’s Quarters Rd., 228-1651. One of the city’s most attractive eateries for atmosphere, Captain’s Quarters matches the beautiful setting with quality bistrostyle fare that won’t disappoint. Summer or winter, it’s a delightful place to dine. $$ p f e CARDINAL HALL OF FAME CAFÉ 2745 Crittenden Dr., 635-8686. This oversize eatery at Gate 4 of the Kentucky Fair & Exposition Center celebrates U of L sports with a “walk of fame” loaded with awards, photos, game balls and lots more Cardinal memorabilia. What? You want food too? Sure! Casual American dining features everything from a “Cardinal Burger” to steaks and prime rib. $$ p CHAMPIONS GRILL 505 Marriott Dr. (Holiday Inn), Clarksville, IN., 283-4411. Known by locals for its Saturday night buffet of New York strip, ribeye and prime rib. Salads, sandwiches, soups and a kid-friendly menu round out the selection. $$ p e CHEDDAR’S CASUAL CAFÉ 10403 Westport Rd., 339-5400, 1385 Veteran’s Pkwy., Clarksville, IN, 280-9660. This popular Dallas-based chain, drawing big, hungry crowds with its large bar and familiar “casual to upscale American” fare, now adds a second property in Southern Indiana. $ p CHICK INN 6325 Upper River Rd., 228-3646. Now in completely new quarters rebuilt after a fire gutted the old building in December 2002, Louisville’s familiar Chick Inn is back, and we’re delighted to report that the new place feels much like the old. Best of all, the excellent fried chicken is still among the bset in town. $$ p f CHILI’S 421 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 425-6800. More than just a place to chow down on baby back ribs, this national chain has a wide selection including fajitas, burgers, sandwiches and veggies. $ p COY’S 4041 Preston Hwy., 363-2266. A change in management prompts a new name and spring cleaning for the old, familiar Longino’s Grill, but we’re counting on similar friendly service and oldfashioned comfort fare to maintain the popularity of this casual South End destination. $$ p f CUNNINGHAM’S 630 S. Fourth St., 587-0526. The historic brick building at Fifth and Breckenridge Streets that housed the original Cunninghams for 131 years was destroyed by fire in 2001. But its new downtown home captures much of the nostalgia of the old, and standing-room-only crowds are just as pleased with its fish sandwiches and pub grub. $ f DEKE’S MARKETPLACE GRILL 301 W. Market St., 584-8337. (see listing under Bistro/Contemporary) FOUNTAIN ROOM AT THE GALT HOUSE 140 N. Fourth St., 589-5200. This comfortable space 72 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com


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features both buffet and menu dining. One price covers the fresh and hot buffet and salad bar. The menu often includes regional and contemporary selections and daily chef specials. $ p GAVI’S RESTAURANT 222 S. Seventh St., 583-8183. This family-owned eatery has been around for more than 20 years. Standard casual American cuisine adds a few Russian-style specialties such as homemade borsht and potato soups and beef Stroganoff. Daily lunch specials include lots of fresh vegetable dishes. $ HEATHER’S ON THE RIVER 1900 Victory Ln., 2284359. The banks of the Ohio in Oldham County make a pretty setting for this barge-based eatery that’s been through several theme changes. Once The Famous Dog, it later became a private club where suburbanites could enjoy a drink in otherwise “dry” surroundings. It’s now open to the public as a fine-dining, American-style restaurant ... and tiki bar. $$ p HOOTERS 4120 Dutchmans Ln., 895-7100; 4948 Dixie Hwy., 449-4194; 7701 Preston Hwy., 9681606; 700 W. Riverside Dr., Jeffersonville, IN, 2189485; 941 East Hwy. 131, Clarksville, IN 284-9464. Hooter’s may draw crowds with its long-standing reputation as a party scene, but you’ll stay for the food, an appetizing selection of soups, salads, seafood and more. Extra points for the company’s regular involvement in community causes. $ p f e JIMMY’S ON THE RIVER 100 W. Riverside Dr., Jeffersonville IN, 282-2500. The menu at this friendly bar and eatery features affordable bar food and munchies, but the fastidious may choose from the menu’s “Lighter Side.” Hearty meals at budget prices and a striking riverside view from two great decks makes for the quintessential moonlit night on the Ohio. $ p f e JOE’S OLDER THAN DIRT 8131 New Lagrange Rd., 426-2074. Going strong after many years in this Lyndon location, Joe’s has gradually grown from a little house to a sprawling complex of indoor and outdoor tables with live music many evenings. Excellent barbecue is a specialty, and so is ice-cold beer. $ p e KAELIN’S RESTAURANT 1801 Newburg Rd., 4511801. This Highlands tradition has been around for almost 70 years, and their cheeky claim to have invented the cheeseburger actually seems to have some basis in fact. It’s faring well with no real changes under new ownership. $ KERN’S KORNER 2600 Bardstown Rd., 456-9726. This family-owned tavern has been a popular neighborhood pit stop since 1978. Kern’s offers freshly made ham, chicken salad sandwiches and burgers, as well as a menu of soups, chilis and appetizers. $ p LEGENDS AT CAESARS Caesars Indiana Casino, Elizabeth, IN, 888-766-2648. The hot and cold short orders are served up with riverboat hospitality, but in a Las Vegas atmosphere. A well stocked bar and a live stage welcome the best of regional and visiting national acts from Wednesday through Saturday nights. $$ p e LYNN’S PARADISE CAFÉ 984 Barret Ave., 583-3447. One of the most popular places in town for brunch (and dinner too), Lynn’s Paradise Café lures happy, hungry crowds with its hearty fare and funky decor. Lynn’s sponsors the State Fair’s tongue-in-cheek Ugliest Lamp Contest, but there’s nothing ugly about the delicious and filling food. $$ p MAIN MENU 3306 Plaza Dr., New Albany, IN., 9486501. $$ MANHATTAN GRILL 200 S. 7th St., 561-0024. $ MASTERSON’S 1830 S. Third St., 636-2511. A fine, family Louisville tradition, this familiar Tudor structure near the U of L campus is the state’s largest full-service restaurant and the city’s

Best seafood in town! 103 West Oak (corner 1st & Oak in Old Louisville)

502.569.6981 leandersonoak@bellsouth.net Tuesday-Saturday • Lunch 11am -3pm • Dinner 5pm -10pm • Sunday 9am - 3pm www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 73


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largest caterer. Serving lunch buffet Mon.-Fri., 10am-2pm only. Sunday Jazz Brunch. $ e

steaks, pastas, salads, appetizers and desserts. The menu is extensive and child friendly. $$ p

MAX & ERMA’S 6051 Timberbridge Dr., 292-2779, 2901 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 493-9662, 3921 Summit Plaza Dr., 412-5229. Max & Erma’s, a national chain that started in Columbus, Ohio’s German Village in 1972, has grown to nearly 100 properties with a steady formula of friendly service and casual-dining fare that ranges from specialty burgers, soups and salads to more weighty entrees. $$ p f

SHANE’S 1004 10th St., Jeffersonville, IN, 218-9769. $

THE MONKEY WRENCH 1025 Barret Ave., 5822433. Delayed for months by red tape and NIMBY opposition, The Monkey Wrench has finally arrived in Pita Delight’s old quarters, and it is worth the wait. Good music, good ambience and exceptionally welcoming service are all plusses, but Chef Scott Brummett’s stylish spin on comfort food is the bottom-line draw. $ p f O’CHARLEY’S (6 locations) O’Charley’s, Inc. could serve well as the picture in the dictionary next to “American casual dining.” The Nashville-based chain operates 206 properties in 16 states in the Southeast and Midwest, serving a straightforward steak-and-seafood menu with the motto “Mainstream with an attitude.” $$ p OTTO’S CAFÉ 500 S. Fourth St. (Seelbach Hilton Hotel), 585-3201. Southern cooking with gourmet flair makes Otto’s an intriguing alternative to the Seelbach’s more upscale Oakroom. Check out the Southern Breakfast Buffet (with Bourbon-bread French toast) and the Executive Express Lunch Buffet. $ RAFFERTY’S OF LOUISVILLE 988 Breckenridge Ln., 897-3900. 3601 Springhurst Blvd., 412-9000. This full-service, casual dining establishment has a hearty menu. Specialties like Red Alfredo Pasta showcase the gourmet offerings along with some of the largest and most creative salad combinations in town. $$ p RANCH HOUSE Highlander Point Shopping Center, Floyds Knobs, IN, 923-1435, 2611 Charlestown Rd., New Albany, IN, 944-9199. The menu and the retro 1950s decor hark back to the original Bob Colgazier’s restaurants that Baby Boomers remember fondly from days gone by. $ e RENDEZVOUS DINER 1126 Bardstown Rd., 585-1116. This comfy-casual new Highlands eatery, open all night, offers an interesting menu that blends familiar diner-style dishes with a few more exotic flavors of the Middle East. We’ve found the atmosphere cozy, the service friendly, the prices affordable, and the food and mood just fine. $$ RIVER GRILLE 140 N. Fourth St. (Galt House), 5895200. Gaze upon the lazy Ohio while enjoying an early bacon and eggs or enjoy a late night burger and fries. Casual and accommodating for guests on the go, the fast and friendly service awaits you on the second floor. $$$ p RUBY TUESDAY 5001 Shelbyville Rd., 897-0200, 11701 Bluegrass Pkwy., 267-7100. If success demonstrates quality, then Ruby Tuesday’s 600 international properties and 30,000 employees can stand up with pride. They’ve been upholding the slogan “Awesome Food. Serious Salad Bar” in Louisville for a generation. $$ p THE RUDYARD KIPLING 422 W. Oak St., 636-1311. The word “eclectic” fits this Old Louisville eatery in just about every dimension, from its funky decor to its diverse bill of fare, not to mention an array of entertainment that bridges the generations from Generation X’ers to aging hippies. $ p f e SAM’S FOOD & SPIRITS 3800 Payne Kohler Rd., Clarksville, IN, 945-9757, 724 Highlander Point Dr., Floyds Knobs, IN, 923-7979. Opened by a man named Sam some 16 years ago, the two locations feed an army of happy diners. You’ll find seafood, 74 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

SHONEY’S 1890 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 491-6870, 811 Eastern Pkwy., 636-1043, 6511 Signature Dr., 9698904. For nearly 50 years, Shoney’s restaurants have been one of America’s top choices for fast roadside dining, and happily they’ve kept up with the times. $ SKYLINE CHILI 1266 Bardstown Rd., 473-1234, Plainview Village Center, 429-5773, 392 Dutchman’s Ln., 895-7578, 6801 Dixie Hwy., 9374020, 426 W. Market St., 561-9999. Louisville’s outposts of a famous Cincinnati chili restaurant, these casual eateries offer the regional favorite (really it’s Greek spaghetti sauce, but keep it quiet) and other fast-food dishes. $ STEAK N SHAKE 3232 Bardstown Rd., 456-2670, 4913 Dixie Hwy., 448-4400, 4545 Outer Loop, 9663109, 2717 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 491-3397, 10721 Fischer Park Dr., 326-3625, 980 E. Hwy. 131, Clarksville, IN., 285-1154. One of the oldest fastfood chains in the U.S., Steak N Shake traces its ancestry to an Illinois roadside stand in 1934. It now boasts 400 outlets in 19 states but still sticks to the basics: quality steak burgers and hand-dipped shakes served, if you dine in, on real china. $ TGI FRIDAY’S 9990 Linn Station Rd., 425-8185, 2311 Lime Kiln Ln., 327-8443, Fourth Street Live, 5853577. The original place to loosen the tie and congregate after the whistle blows. TGIF carries on its party atmosphere tradition with American bistro dining and libations. The bill of fare ranges from baskets of appetizers on up to contemporary entrees. $$ p f THE OTHER PLACE 1600 Bardstown Rd., 458-2888. $fe THE PUB LOUISVILLE Fourth Street Live 569-7782. Owned by Cincinnati’s The Tavern Restaurant Group, The Pub features “nouveau pub cuisine” ranging from shepherd’s pie and fish and chips to more Continental dishes like fried calamari and a seared ahi tuna entrée. $$ p f TOMMY LANCASTER RESTAURANT 1629 E. Market St., New Albany, IN, 945-2389. Value and variety are the strong points of this community tradition and the fare goes from burgers to lobster tails. Friday or Saturday evenings feature a buffet. $ p TRELLIS RESTAURANT 320 W. Jefferson St. (Hyatt Regency), 587-3434. Dine on café fare in the Hyatt’s lofty atrium lobby while you take advantage of an environment made for people-watching. The extensive menu ranges from drinks to desserts, a club sandwich to a filet mignon. The Trellis also offers a popular and expansive Sunday brunch. $$ p TUCKER’S 2441 State St., New Albany, IN, 9449999. Tucker’s gives you a little bit of everything with a down-to-earth flair, offering burgers, ribs, steaks, a variety of appetizers, pastas and Mexican fare. $ p TWIAMS CHICKEN & WAFFLES 2517 Dixie Hwy., 775-0216. Former U of L basketball star Tony Williams now presides over Twiams, an attractive West End eatery that impresses the visitor with cordial service and quality fare. The name of the place pretty much describes the menu, which also features other soul-food favorites. $ TWIG & LEAF RESTAURANT 2122 Bardstown Rd., 451-8944. A popular Highlands hangout, the ”Twig” is probably at its best for breakfast—whether you’re enjoying it while venturing out on a leisurely Sunday morning or heading home very late on a Saturday night. It’s a place to grab a quick, filling bite, and doesn’t pretend to be more. $ THE VILLA BUFFET Caesars Indiana Casino, Elizabeth, IN, 888-766-2648. The Villa Buffet offers an impressive choice of international

dishes, with some 150 selections. A seafood buffet is featured on Fridays. $$

ANCHOR INN 1500 Evergreen Rd., 245-7121. Enjoying new life under the same management, the former Abruzzi has switched from ItalianAmerican fare to American home-style cuisine. But the best part—its upscale casual style in the park-like setting of suburban Anchorage—is just as good as ever. $$ p f BARBARA LEE’S KITCHEN 2410 Brownsboro Rd., 897-3967. Barbara Lee’s has been a late-night refuge for years. It’s a reliable standby for those in search of traditional blue-plate special lunch food. Honest grub, honestly priced, in a rootsy atmosphere. $ CAROLYN’S 3822 Cane Run Rd., 776-9519. The steam table classic, the “meat ‘n’ two” gives you the roast chicken, green beans and mashed potatoes. Or pork chops, applesauce and limas. $ CHECK’S CAFÉ 1101 E. Burnett Ave., 637-9515. You can scent a whiff of Louisville history coming off the old walls of this quintessential Germantown saloon, along with years of frying grease. The bar food here is about as good as bar food gets, and that’s not bad. The chili and the bean soup are particularly recommended. $ p f e THE CHICKEN HOUSE 7180 Hwy. 111, Sellersburg, IN., 246-9485. The parking lot of this white frame building in rural Indiana is packed on weekend nights as families from throughout the area wait on delectable fried chicken. This is the very heart of American comfort food, including green beans, dumplings, and mashed potatoes. $$ COTTAGE CAFÉ 11609 Main St., Middletown, 2449497. This nostalgic old house in the countryside offers a taste of Kentucky-style cookery in an array of lunch specials that range from homemade soups and sandwiches to the traditional Louisville Hot Brown. $ COTTAGE INN 570 Eastern Pkwy., 637-4325. Now, this is down-home dining. Tucked away under big shade trees on Eastern Parkway not far from the University of Louisville’s Belknap Campus, Cottage Inn has been happily doling out excellent food for more than 70 years. $ COUNTRY KITCHEN 1506 Berry Blvd., 367-5995. Cafeteria style or dining room menu service: it’s up to you. This south end establishment serves up a variety of home-style food from sweet iced tea and biscuits to the country-fried steak and a fluffy mountain of real mashed potatoes and gravy. $ p f DE-VILLE’S 4900 Poplar Level Rd., 961-9102. De-Ville’s has made a science out of soul food, with collard greens, buttermilk cornbread, pork chop sandwiches and fried ribs. $ f D’NALLEY’S 970 S. Third St., 583-8015. Dirt-cheap blue-plate specials and hearty breakfasts bring droves to the counters and booths of this classic greasy spoon. Saturday morning hours are sporadic, but for a quick plate of meat loaf, green beans, and mashed potatoes, D’Nalley’s is a hard place to beat. $ FORK IN THE ROAD RESTAURANT 4951 Cane Run Rd., 448-3903. $ GENNY’S DINER 2223 Frankfort Ave., 893-0923. What’s the difference between Genny’s Diner and a saloon? You can take the kids to Genny’s. Better still, you can get a darn good meal at Genny’s, provided that you set your expectations for hearty, filling and well-prepared diner food. $ p e GOLDEN CORRAL 4032 Taylorsville Rd., 485-0004, 8013 Preston Hwy., 966-4970, 1402 Cedar St., 258-2540. Buffet style family dining—one price, all you can eat. Steaks are served beginning at 4 pm. $


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GOOSE CREEK DINER 2923 Goose Creek Rd., 3398070. Goose Creek Diner offers old-fashioned comfort food, as the name “diner” suggests, but transcendently adds a gourmet taste to the down-home eats. $ HAZELWOOD RESTAURANT 4106 Taylor Blvd., 3619104. Whether you like your eggs over easy, or your cheeseburgers well done, you’ll like the Hazelwood Restaurant. Standard short orders cooked with lots of character and a low price. $ HOLLY’S LEGAL STREET CAFETERIA 715 W. Jefferson St., 584-4080 A longtime favorite of the Courthouse crowd, Holly’s steam table and grill consistently please, as does its full bar. $ p HOMETOWN BUFFET 1700 Alliant Ave., 267-7044, 3710 Chamberlain Ln., 326-9777, 6641 Dixie Hwy., 995-3320, 757 Hwy. 131, Clarksville, IN., 285-1893. This national chain serves up nostalgic dishes, casseroles, meats and desserts that allow you to set an all-American supper table with the all-youcan eat price tag. $ INDI’S RESTAURANT 1033 W. Broadway, 589-7985, 3820 W. Market St., 778-5154, 4901 Poplar Level Rd., 964-5749, 3353 Fern Valley Rd., 969-7993, 5009 S. Third St., 363-2535. Grown from a tiny West End takeout spot to a mini-chain, Indi’s vends a variety of affordable soul food and barbecue specialties to take out or eat in. $ JESSIE’S FAMILY RESTAURANT 9609 Dixie Hwy., 937-6332. Country cooking is Jessie’s specialty, with hearty breakfast, lunch and dinner platters to fill the inner person. $ KINGS FAST FOOD 2101 W. Broadway, 772-7138. This tiny, colorful West End eatery, open for takeout only, offers a vast selection of filling, affordable urban fare that ranges from hot-andspicy chicken wings to rib tips and more. $ KING’S FRIED CHICKEN 1302 Dixie Hwy., 776-3013. $ LINDY’S 5110 Preston Hwy., 964-6428. Open 7 days a week, this establishment is a local favorite for family dining. Variety is the key to Lindy’s reputation with buffet or full service menus available. Enjoy daily specials and down home selections from franks and kraut to steak dinners. $ MR. LOU’S COUNTRY COTTAGE RESTAURANT 5408 Valley Station Rd., 933-0806. Biscuits and red-eye gravy, country ham and grits show off Mr. Lou’s country cooking style. Roast chicken is a dinner favorite, and so are homemade pies. $ NEIL’S PLACE 7611 IN 311, Sellersburg, IN, 246-5456. Best known for the specially seasoned fried chicken. Neil’s also makes excellent pastas, steaks, seafood, and salads. Homemade soups are created daily and coffee and desserts are always fresh. $$ p O’DOLLYS 7800 Third St. Rd., 375-1690. Homestyle steam-table favorites are available from breakfast through dinner, not to mention full bar service that makes O’Dollys a Southwest Louisville destination. $ p f OLIVE’S ON FOURTH 570 S. Fourth St., 588-9003. No matter what you’re hungry for, chances are Olive’s has it—from steam-table fare to pizza and calzones. Linda Zeisloft, longtime manager of The Bakery at Sullivan University, is owner and chef. $ f ROADWAY WINGS 708 Cecil Ave., 774-5543. $ f TOLL BRIDGE INN 3300 Northwestern Pkwy,, 7765505. A rich and colorful history surrounds the century-old frame building in Portland that now houses the Toll Bridge Inn, a neighborhood favorite for simple, filling down-home fare. $ f WAGNER’S PHARMACY 3133 S. Fourth St., 375-3800. A track-side institution that has as much history as the nearby Twin Spires of Churchill Downs. Soups, sandwiches, shakes, cherry Cokes and an early bird “trainer’s” breakfast can be enjoyed all year round. Racing history on the walls and servers who’ll call you “hon.” $

WEBB’S MARKET 944 E. Muhammad Ali Blvd., 5830318. Webb’s is deli sandwich market style dining. Country ham sandwiches and the half-pound cheeseburger are a specialty. $

ANN’S BY THE RIVER 149 Spring St., Jeffersonville, IN., 284-2667. This bustling eatery is cafeteria style dining done well. They serve up the standard steam table meat-and-three menu items as good as any. With the Ohio River a block away, it’s aptly named. $ COLONNADE CAFETERIA 455 S. Fifth St., 5846846. Sometimes cafeteria fare hits the spot, and this much-loved local landmark in the basement of the Starks Building has won a multigenerational crowd of loyal fans. $ CRAVINGS A LA CARTE 101 S. Fifth St. (National City Tower), 589-4230. Sequestered beneath the National City Tower, this thrifty deli offers a variety of build-your-own sandwiches, a soupand-salad bar, and specialty bars featuring baked potatoes, Mexican pizzas, and a monthly ethnic creation. $ HALL’S CAFETERIA 1301 Story Ave., 583-0437. Hall’s Cafeteria has been doing a brisk business on the steam tables since 1955, attracting customers from Butchertown’s truck loading docks and from offices downtown. $ JANE’S CAFETERIA 4601 Jennings Ln., 454-7286. This 40-year-old family-owned restaurant knows how to cook for folks missing their home table. Count on an attentive staff and fresh southern fare. $ JAY’S CAFETERIA 1812 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd., 583-2534. Jay’s big, well-scrubbed new building wouldn’t be out of place on Hurstbourne Lane. Cafeteria fare is consistently fine, and hungry diners from all over town find a warm welcome at this popular West End location. $ PICCADILLY CAFETERIA 2131 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 493-9900, 133 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 423-1733. An east end favorite for variety, Piccadilly offers roast beef, fried chicken, cod, steak and shrimp dinners, a gardener’s list of vegetables and a few ethnic dishes for global measure. $ SOUTH SIDE INN CAFETERIA 114 E. Main St., New Albany, IN., 945-9645. This venerable familyowned cafeteria is the very essence of cafeteria dining. Roast beef, fried Alaskan whitefish, spaghetti and meat sauce, pies chock full of fruit and old-fashioned vegetables come in huge portions for low prices. You’ll be hard pressed to spend five bucks here, and you’ll get a lunch or dinner that will leave you napping. $

A little R&R Relive the elegance of railcar dining. Enjoy a delicious meal prepared on board and served with true Southern hospitality.

Murder Mysteries May 20 and 21 July 15 and 16 Dinner and Lunch Excursions Offered Year Round Private Parties Welcome Group Rates Available Please call toll-free for reservations

BUFFALO CROSSING 1140 Bagdad Rd., Shelbyville, KY, (502) 647-0377. If you’d like to combine a day trip with a culinary adventure, consider a drive to Buffalo Crossing in Shelby County. This agricultural amusement park features a 500-head buffalo herd and an oversize dining room where you can give this healthy red meat a try. The food here is country-style and so are the friendly servers. $$ f

866-801-3463 Bardstown, KY

DERBY DINNER PLAYHOUSE 525 Marriott Dr., Clarksville, IN, 288-8281. The play’s the thing at Derby Dinner Playhouse, Louisville’s long-running entry in the dinner-theater sweepstakes ... but the expansive buffet dinner adds value to the mix. $$$$ e HOWL AT THE MOON Fourth Street Live, 562-9400. What’ll they think of next? How about a nightclub that features a “dueling” piano bar with two pianos and a sing-along concept? You’ll find it at Fourth Street Live, where this 4,000-square-foot club is now open on the ground level. $ p e

www.kydinnertrain.com www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 75


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JILLIAN’S 630 Barret Ave., 589-9090. Louisville’s outpost of the Boston-based billiard-themed restaurant concept, this big and noisy bar, food and billiards scene is housed under the towering concrete columns of a former grain elevator just east of downtown. Always filled with a happy crowd, it’s the place to go for casual food and fun. $ p f e JOE HUBER FAMILY FARM & RESTAURANT 2421 Scottsville Rd., Starlight IN, 923-5255. A pleasant 20-minute drive from downtown Louisville, Huber’s has built a solid reputation for simple farm fare that’s well-made, fresh and good. Some of the produce is grown on the premises in season. $$ p f e MY OLD KENTUCKY DINNER TRAIN 602 N. Third St., Bardstown, KY, (502) 348-7300. Talk about a nostalgia trip: My Old Kentucky Dinner Train offers a four-course meal during a two-hour voyage along scenic Kentucky railroad tracks near Bardstown in vintage 1940s-era dining cars. Reservations are strongly recommended. All aboard! $$$$ p STAR OF LOUISVILLE 151 W. Riverside Rd., Jeffersonville, IN, 589-7827. The Ohio River cruise is the best thing about this Love Boat-style yacht that makes nightly all-you-can-eat cruises up the river. $$$$ p f e STUMLER RESTAURANT & ORCHARD 10924 St. John’s Rd., Starlight, IN, 923-3832. Fresh produce is available in the big shed a few steps away, and that fresh produce shows up on the tables here in mammoth portions. Combine that with honest fried chicken, big ham steaks, roast beef, and sandwiches, and you can’t go wrong. $$ f TWICE TOLD PERFORMANCE CAFÉ 3507 W. Hwy. 146, LaGrange, 222-4506. An eclectic urban café in a village setting, about 20 minutes east of downtown in LaGrange. The casual menu lists sandwiches, fruits and veggies; daily soups and entrees. Live music every night—folk, spoken word, blues, jazz. $ e

ANGILO’S PIZZA 1725 Berry Blvd., 368-1032. The local favorite is the steak hoagie, dripping with pizza sauce, pickles and onions. Angilo’s also offers a wide selection of hot pizza pies and cold beer. $ ANGIO’S RESTAURANT 3731 Old Bardstown Rd., 451-5454. This small Buechel eatery attracts a friendly neighborhood crowd with hefty subs and quality pizzas, along with cold beer. $ ANNIE’S PIZZA 2520 Portland Ave., 776-6400, 4007 Cane Run Rd., 449-4444. Annie’s has made-toorder pizza and a variety of stacked sandwiches such as the Big Daddy Strom with beef, Italian sausage, onions and banana peppers. $ ARNI’S PIZZA 1208 State St., New Albany, IN, 9451149, 3700 Paoli Pike, Floyds Knobs, IN, 923-9805. A favorite Hoosier pizza and sandwich stop. Insist on getting the Deluxe. $ BEARNO’S PIZZA 131 W. Main St., 584-7720, 2900 Taylorsville Rd., 458-8605, 6101 Bardstown Rd., 231-2222, 135-F Marketplace Dr., 957-5100, 10117 Taylorsville Rd., 267-2549, 1318 Bardstown Rd., 456-4556, 8019 Preston Hwy., 968-6060, 4105 Dixie Hwy., 449-4141, 9222 Westport Rd.,423-1224, 7895 Dixie Hwy., 937-1234, 1923 S. Fourth St., 6345155, 3002 Charlestown Crossing, 949-7914. Bearno’s is known for its Italian entrees, generous salads, and Chicago-style pizza. If you prefer something more substantial, Bearno’s also offers spaghetti, marinara and meatballs. $ p CALIFORNIA PIZZA KITCHEN 7900 Shelbyville Rd. (Oxmoor Center), 425-5125. California pizza became a trend when famous chefs gave this simple Italian fare a multi-ethnic spin with non-

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traditional Pacific Rim toppings. CPK successfully translates this trend for the mass market. $$ p f CICI’S PIZZA 470 New Albany Plaza, New Albany, IN., 944-4942. Serious bargain-hunters will find Cici’s culinary offer hard to beat. This Dallasbased chain’s New Albany pizzeria, the first of 10 planned metro locations, serves up all the pizza you can eat for only $3.99. $ CLIFTON’S PIZZA 2230 Frankfort Ave., 893-3730. Clifton’s pizza appeals to me with its adult style, full of the bold flavors of herbs and spices and available with grown-up toppings like anchovies and artichoke hearts. All this and funky, fun decor makes it one of my favorite local pizzerias. $ f e DOMINO’S PIZZA (20 locations) $$ FAST BREAK PIZZA 6825 Central Ave., 243-1101. $ FAT JIMMY’S 9901C LaGrange Rd., 339-8111, 2712 Frankfort Ave., 891-4555; 2208 Bardstown Rd., 479-1040. This friendly neighborhood nook offers a cold mug of beer and a hot slice of pizza, along with sub sandwiches, pasta dishes and salads. The Lyndon spot lures a friendly biker crowd; the Crescent Hill eatery reflects its urban setting. $ FIGARO’S PIZZERIA 16201 Eastwood Cut-Off Rd., 254-7220. So far out in the East End that it’s almost at the county line, this quaint little country storefront houses something just a bit more urban: an excellent pizzeria featuring both thincrust and delicious thick Chicago-style pies. $ FRATELLO’S PIZZA 735 Ewing Ln., Jeffersonville, IN, 284-1234. Family owned and operated, Fratello’s offers fresh, homemade pies. Tangy, spicy sauce and a chewy crust with a distinctly garlicky flavor define Fratello’s pizza; add points for warm and friendly hospitality $ FROLIO’S PIZZA 3799 Poplar Level Rd., 456-1000. Just around the corner from the Louisville Zoo, Frolio’s is a neighborhood pizzeria with a cozy, dim Italian-American mood and an all-you-caneat pizza-and-salad lunch special. $$ f HIGHLANDS TAPROOM 1279 Bardstown Rd., 4592337. This cozy nook for Bardstown Road music and microbrew fans features tavern fare and munchies, a full bar and thirteen beers on tap. Eclectic rock, folk and blues round out a popular and late night live music scene. $ p f e HOMETOWN PIZZA 11804 Shelbyville Rd., 245-4555, 8442 Dixie Hwy., 935-3555, La Grange Square Shopping Center, 222-4444. Pasta dishes, hoagies, stromboli and cold beer are available, and so is the one-of-a-kind Bacon Cheeseburger pizza. $$ IROQUOIS PIZZA 6614 Manslick Rd., 363-3211. $$ LITTLE CAESAR’S PIZZA 816 Kenwood Dr., 3665599, 9017 Galene Dr., 267-8600, 5622 Preston Hwy. 966-5800, 6714 Outer Loop, 966-3111. This Detroit-based pizzeria chain lost market share in the ‘90s, but business analysts say the company known for its two-for-one “pizza pizza” deal has turned things around with a renewed commitment to quality and service. $$ LOUISVILLE PIZZA CO. 3910 Ruckriegel Pkwy., 2671188. Also known as Chubby Ray’s, this local pizzeria makes good, fresh pizzas and ItalianAmerican sandwiches. $ p f

MR. GATTI’S 5600 S. Third St., 363-2211, 8594 Dixie Hwy., 935-0100, 3319 Bardstown Rd., 451-0540, 9010 Taylorsville Rd., 499-9804, 1108 Lyndon Ln., 339-8338, 2247 S. Preston St., 635 –6708, 4200 Outer Loop, 964-0920. This Austin-based chain was one of the first national pizzerias to reach Louisville in the 1970s, and quality ingredients—plus Gattiland playgrounds for the kids—have made its crisp, thincrust pizzas a popular draw for nearly 30 years. $$ NEW YORK CAPRI PIZZA 1503 Lynch Ln., Clarksville, IN, 284-1480. $ PA PA MURPHY’S PIZZA 291 N. Hubbards Ln., 8956363, 5016 Mud Ln., 962-7272, 9501 Taylorsville Rd., 266-7000, 6756 Bardstown Rd., 239-8282. $$ PAPA JOHN’S PIZZA (30 locations) “Papa” John Schnatter got into the pizza game as a Southern Indiana high-school student in 1984 and has built his business into a 3,000-restaurant international chain on the basis of a simple formula: traditional pizza, made from quality ingredients in a straightforward style. $$ PIE IN THE SKY 10301 Taylorsville Rd., 240-9988. This pizzeria offers up pies with fresh ingredients and hand-tossed dough. The selection of beer is wide and so is the TV screen for those weekend gatherings. Pasta, salads and sandwiches— including the popular Hot Sicilian—round out the casual dining menu. $$ PIZZA BOX 10331 Champion Farms Dr., 423-0530. Moved early in 2005 from its longtime, spartan quarters near the Ford Kentucky Truck Plant, Pizza Box now boasts more modern and stylish quarters in Springhurst. It’s still a popular gathering place, and the excellent pizzas are still a draw, even if they’ve cut back on the once imposing beer list. $ PIZZA BY THE GUY 8109 Lagrange Rd., 426-4044. This locally owned franchise is famous for its extra spicy, hand-tossed dough. Come and get it, literally, because there’s only a cozy table for three at the store and most folks pick up their pie or have it delivered. $ PIZZA HUT (15 locations) $$ PIZZA KING 3825 Charlestown Rd., New Albany IN, 945-4405, 1066 Kehoe Ln., Jeffersonville, IN., 2828286. The pizza at Pizza King is baked in a sturdy, clay stone oven and hand-tossed with thinner crust where the ingredients go all the way to the edge. $$ PIZZA MAGIA (13 Locations) This newcomer Louisville-based chain is making waves in the lowcost/high quality pizza biz. In addition to a variety of pizzas, it offers Stromboli, Sweetie Pie (an Italian dessert pastry crisscrossed with icing) wings and both cheese and traditional breadsticks. $$ PIZZA PLACE 2931 Richland Ave., 458-9700. $ QUEENIE’S PIZZA & SUCH 2622 S. Fourth St., 6363708. Queenie’s stuffed Chicago-style and crispy thin-crust pizzas offer whichever option a pizza lover desires. An active participant in its neighborhood, Queenie’s often donates a percentage of its proceeds to church and civic programs. $

MA ZERELLAS 949 S. Indiana Ave., Sellersburg, IN, 246-9517. A pleasant family-run-for-family-fun establishment. Pizza, pasta, salads and subs served for lunch and dinner seven days a week. $

SPINELLI’S PIZZERIA 614 Baxter Ave., 568-5665. This tiny storefront in the city’s nightclub zone offers a tasty option for the wide-eyed-late-atnight crowd seeking good cheap eats; it’s open until 5 a.m nightly from Wednesdays through Saturdays. Better yet, it gives Louisville an authentic taste of Philadelphia specialties: Phillystyle pizza and real Philly cheese steaks. $ f

MANCINO’S PIZZA & GRINDERS 12488 Lagrange Rd., 241-9902. Oven-baked and stuffed with all your favorites, a “grinder” is a one-step hungerslaying sandwich. The local favorite is the Mancino’s Pride, which is topped with every veggie in the kitchen plus ham, pepperoni and sausage. $

SPORTSTIME PIZZA 3312 Plaza Dr., New Albany, IN, 944-2577. Touting “the best pizza in southern Indiana” is quite a boast, but when the pizza biz is part of the New Albanian Brewing Company, the boast carries weight. The N.A.B.C. is the newest offshoot of Rich O’s, nationally noted for its huge


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selection of microbrews and hard-to-find imports. Try the “Herbavore” with spinach, sliced tomatoes and roasted garlic for a sizzling start. $ TONY BOOMBOZZ 3334 Frankfort Ave., 896-9090, 1448 Bardstown Rd., 458-8889. Boombozz wins praise for exceptionally high quality pizza and other quick Italian-style fare. Tony’s pizzas include both traditional pies and gourmet-style specialties that have won awards in national competition. $$ UNO CHICAGO BAR & GRILL 6501 Bardstown Rd., 239-0079. This successful franchise serves up Chicago style pizza—deep dish with more toppings than crust. Steaks, pastas, sandwiches and burgers complement the full service menu. $$ p VITO’S PIZZERIA 3213 Preston Hwy., 634-5400. Reasonable people can differ on the subject, but Vito’s fans say the sizzling, oven-charred pies at this downscale little place on Preston are among the best pizzas in town. $$ WICKS PIZZA PARLOR 975 Baxter Ave., 458-1828, 2927 Goose Creek Rd., 327-9425, 12717 Shelbyville Rd., 213-9425, 10966 Dixie Hwy., 995-4333. Wick’s wins popularity with a welcoming mix of good pizza, a quality beer list and a friendly neighborhood feel at all three of its eateries. The pies are straightforward, made with ample toppings. “The Big Wick” is a favorite. $ p

AMAZING GRACE WHOLE FOODS DELI 1133 Bardstown Rd., 485-1122. If you think “vegan” means only raw carrots, bean sprouts, seeds and roots, think again. No animals were harmed in the making of the tasty alternative sandwiches and other dishes at this neat little deli attached to a spiffy local organic-foods grocery. $ ANOTHER PLACE SANDWICH SHOP 119 S. Seventh St., 589-4115. If you want to buy a car, go to a car dealer. To buy a carpet, patronize a carpet shop. And if you’ve got a sandwich on your to-do list, it makes sense to go to a sandwich shop. Another Place, now in this west-downtown location, has been making good ones for years. $ ANTHONY’S 22 Theater Square, 584-0364. $ f BACKYARD BURGER 1800 Priority Way, 240-9945. The open flame at this counter-service diner provides the next best thing to a family cookout. Sandwiches, fresh salads, fruit cobblers and oldfashioned hand-dipped milkshakes enhance the nostalgic theme. $ f BANK SHOT BILLIARDS 403 E. Market St., 587-8260. $ BIG SUBS 9811B Old Third Street Rd., 933-2010. $ BLIMPIE’S SUBS & SALADS 1971 Hurstbourne Pkwy., 495-6565, 2020 Brownsboro Rd., 899-7960, 3360 Hikes Ln., 451-5480. Sublime subs—fast and fresh. Blimpie’s is all that … and a bag of chips. $ C.A.P.P.P.’S DELI 4010 Dupont Cir., 895-7064. $ CH¯ EBA HUT 947 Baxter Ave., 454-5507. Spawned by a small but growing sub sandwich chain based in the Phoenix area, Ch¯ eba Hut’s slogan observes that “the only thing fried is an occasional customer.” The marijuana theme is so pervasive that it’s safe to assume this is the least likely place in town for actually scoring weed. $ f CHICKEN KING 639 E. Broadway, 589-5464. Spicy, crunchy and sizzling hot fried chicken is the primary draw on a short, affordable menu. $ CIANO’S 11904 Shelbyville Rd., 245-6997. $ DANISH EXPRESS PASTRIES 102 1/2 Cannons Ln., 895-2863. Just a few tables turn this takeout nook into a sit-in breakfast and lunch spot for a handful of diners at a time. Full breakfasts and light lunches are available, but as the name

implies, Danish pastries are the specialty, and they’re fine. $ DINO’S DOWN TO LUNCH CAFÉ 239 S Fifth St. (Kentucky Home Life Building) 585-2874. $ DIZZY WHIZZ DRIVE-IN 217 W. St. Catherine St., 5833828. This neighborhood eatery is an institution. It goes back more than 50 years and hasn’t changed much. It opens early and stays open late and offers good value for what you’d expect. $ f DMITRI’S DELI 521 S. Third St., 584-8060. A downtown deli favorite. Daily specials are surrounded by an impressive variety of sandwiches, soups and salads. $ f DOOLEY’S BAGELCATESSEN 12903 Shelbyville Rd., 245-3354, 216 N. Hurstbourne Ln., 394-0021, 980 Breckenridge Ln., 893-3354, 2241 State St., New Albany, IN, 981-0124, 2226 Holiday Manor Center, 426-3354. This convenient deli specializes in bagels, as the name implies. Breakfast means fresh bagels with an array of cream cheese, sausage, eggs and coffee. At lunchtime lines form for sandwiches—subs, panini, wraps, hot melts and cold cuts. $ EURO MARKET 12907 Factory Ln., 243-0000. It looks like a neighborhood convenience store and bottle shop, but when you get inside, it contains a delicious surprise: an appetizing service counter offers a variety of goodies to take out or eat in. Don’t miss the excellent fried-oyster box, as well as an intriguing selection of quality beers and fine wines. $ THE FEED BAG DELI 133 Breckenridge Ln., 896-1899. The grilled salmon burger is worth the visit, as well as the Triple Crown wrap with three meats or a fresh veggie wrap. Soups, desserts top off the lunch-only schedule. $ FRASCELLI’S NEW YORK DELI 6247 Crestwood Station, 243-9005. Small and spartan, this tworoom storefront in the newish Crestwood Station

shopping center just out from Pewee Valley offers a broad selection of Italian-style deli sandwiches, plus a shorter list of home-style Italian hot dishes from lasagna to baked ziti. $ GELI CAKES 1589 Bardstown Rd., 456-2466. It’s a delight to have this casual eatery on Bardstown Road. The specialty is Italian gelato, and it comes pretty close to the real thing. But don’t start with dessert; the panini (Italian grilled sandwiches) are first-rate, and it’s also open for weekend brunch. $ f HEAVENLY HAM 11606 Shelbyville Rd., 245-1527, 3000 Bardstown Rd., 451-6110, Northgate Center, New Albany IN, 941-9426. $ JERSEY MIKE’S SUBS AND SALADS 10266 Shelbyville Rd., 244-1991, 10519 Fischer Park Dr., 425-1025, 9156 Taylorsville Rd., 499-9830. East Coast-style sub shop with local faves that includes cheese, ham, prosciuttini, capicola, salami, pepperoni and fixings. $ JUANITA’S BURGER BOY 1450 S. Brook, 635-7410. For a real slice of Louisville life, this weathered greasy spoon at the corner of Brook and Burnett is the real thing. Neighborhood denizens drink coffee and chow down on burgers and breakfast until the wee hours (the joint is open 24 hours). If Louisville is home to a budding Charles Bukowski, there’s a good chance he’s sitting at Juanita’s counter right now, recovering from last night’s excesses. $ JULIE’S OF JEFFERSONVILLE 326 Spring St., Jeffersonville, IN, 218-0318. Located in historic downtown Jeffersonville, this eatery is known for its Reuben plate, tomato basil soup or any of the desserts that Julie creates each day. $ f LITTLE CHEF 147 E. Market St., New Albany, IN, 949-7567. Every city needs a postage-stampsized spot that knows how to fry potatoes and

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grill up a burger. In New Albany, the place is Little Chef. Biscuits and gravy, fried eggs, and burgers, in a joint that seems like a throwback to the heartland of America, circa 1940. $ f LONNIE’S BEST TASTE OF CHICAGO 121 St. Matthews Ave., 895-2380. This appetizing operation offers genuine Chicago hot dogs and a taste of Chicago atmosphere for a price that won’t hurt your wallet. Make Lonnie’s the place to go when you’ve got a hankering for Windy City fare. $$ LOTSA PASTA 3717 Lexington Rd., 896-6361. As the name suggests, Lotsa Pasta originated as an Italian specialty-food store, and it has been a local favorite since it opened over 20 years ago. It now offers deli meats and cheeses and an eclectic international selection of sausages and cheese. You can’t dine in, but an excellent deli counter fashions New Orleans-style muffulettas and other sandwiches to go. $ LUNCH TODAY 590 Missouri Ave., Jeffersonville, IN, 282-1005. This outfit prepares its share of the soups, salads and sandwiches that the downtown workforce needs to re-energize. $ f MAIN EATERY 643 W. Main St., 589-3354. Smack dab in the middle of the Main Street historic district, this fashionable deli lures the savvy business midday crowd. $ f MCALISTER’S DELI 10041 Forest Green Blvd., 4258900, 2721 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 671-2424, 2400 Lime Kiln Ln., 339-8544, 6508 Bardstown Rd., 239-9997, 1305 Veterans Pkwy., Clarksville, IN, 282-3354. Emphasizing quality customer service, this delicatessen ladles up such soups as gumbo and chicken tortilla along with cutting board favorites. They have a special way with a tumbler of sweet iced tea and lemon. $ f NAIMAN’S DELI 237 Whittington Pkwy., 423-1414. Les Naiman returns to the deli business nearly 20 years after he closed his old Nosh Box in this very shopping center off Hurstbourne Pkwy. Naiman’s offers a good selection of deli meats and homemade lunch-counter goodies to tempt the taste buds, plus a gigantic Sunday buffet. $ f NANCY’S BAGEL GROUNDS 2101 Frankfort Ave., 895-8323. A friendly and casual neighborhood gathering spot. Offerings include soups, snacks, coffee drinks and bagels made on the premises to its own rather idiosyncratic formula. $ f NORD’S BROWN BAG PUB & DELI 2100 S. Preston St., 634-0931. This simple little neighborhood spot near the University of Louisville may not be much for atmosphere, but well-fashioned if simple diner fare vaults it into the realm of serious destinations for hard-core “foodies,” with extra credit for friendly, welcoming cafeteria-style service. $ OLLIE’S TROLLEY 978 S. Third St., 583-5214. A little piece of fast-food history remains on an urban street corner in Old Louisville. It’s one of the nation’s few surviving trolleys of the Louisvillebased chain that spread across the nation in the ‘70s. Oversize burgers with a spicy, homemade flavor are just as good as ever. $ PANERA BREAD CO. 5000 Shelbyville Rd., 8999992, 6221 Dutchmans Ln., 895-9991, 601 S. Hurstbourne Ln., 423-7343, 10451 Champion Farms Dr., 426-2134. Warm breads finish-baked on the premises make a tasty base for a variety of sandwiches. Soups, salads, coffee drinks and a free WiFi hotspot make Panera’s outlets popular gathering places. $ f PAUL’S FRUIT MARKET 3905 Chenoweth Sq., 8968918, 4946 Brownsboro Rd., 426-5059, 12119 Shelbyville Rd., 253-0072, 3704 Taylorsville Rd., 456-4750. One of Louisville’s popular sources for produce, cheeses, deli items, and the like. Deli sandwiches and salads are available (takeout only). $ 78 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com

PENN STATION (11 Locations). Billed as the East Coast Sub Headquarters, this sandwich kitchen does a brisk business here in the Louisville area. $ PO-BOY SHOPPE 2286 Bardstown Rd., 454-0424. If you think “Po-boy” describes yourself on the weekend before payday, you might want to consider an educational trip to this casual new storefront, where they specialize in this hearty Louisiana-style sandwich treat plus more Cajun and Creole favorites. $ QUIZNO’S SUBS (15 locations) Toasted breads, a sandwich selection of meats, veggies and fish are built to fight hunger. Fresh soups are available daily, from chili to chowder; so are salads and desserts. $ SCHLOTZSKY’S DELI 4259 Outer Loop, 969-0506, 10531 Fischer Park Dr., 425-844, 12915 Shelbyville Rd., 244-9069. The original Schlotzsky’s offered just one kind of sandwich—“The Original”—when it opened its first eatery in Austin, Texas, in 1971. Now this national chain vends a full selection of deli-style fare, with one significant improvement on the traditional deli: the servers are invariably polite. $ f SOUPY’S 3019 Breckenridge Ln., 451-5325, 4632 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 499-4404, 4590 Dixie Hwy, 449-2000, 9493 Westport Rd, 425-2549, 2930 Dr. William Weathers Dr., 774-2500. In the soup kettles you will find such classics as cheesy potato, bean and ham, broccoli and cheese, chicken and dumplings and more. At the cutting board they’ll make you meat, cheese and veggie sandwiches according to your custom design, scoop up tuna and chicken salads and barbecue, or grill you a burger. $ THE STARVING ARTIST CAFÉ & DELI 8034 New Lagrange Rd., 412-1599. $ STEVENS & STEVENS 1114 Bardstown Rd., 584-3354. Sharing space with the popular Ditto’s, Stevens & Stevens is primarily known for catering and takeout fare. They cook just as well if you choose to stay in, though, offering appealing sandwiches and deli fare with a healthy twist. $ STRAWBERRY PATCH DELI 11616 Shelbyville Rd., 254-1440. This Middletown deli offers healthy food with a dash of gourmet and a sprinkle of southern. $ SUB STATION II 3101 Fern Valley Rd., 964-1075. The hardy No. 19, a six-meat-and-cheese super sub, keeps the store buzzing. An array of sandwiches, salad sides and desserts fill out an appetizing lunch menu. $ TWO GUYS AND A GRILL Center, 893-5118. $

4806 Brownsboro

W.W. COUSINS RESTAURANT 900 Dupont Rd., 897-9684. This locally owned and operated eatery looks a lot like the national Fuddruckers chain, but the local boys do a better job, with huge burgers on magisterial home-baked buns and a Metropolitan Museum of toppings. $ WALL ST. DELI 225 Abraham Flexner Way at Jewish Hospital, 585-4202. Offering New York style with Kentucky flair, this busy downtown deli will serve in-house diners or take orders for deliveries. Authentic Nathan’s Hot Dogs are a specialty. $ WILD OATS NATURAL MARKETPLACE 4600 Shelbyville Rd., 721-7373. This national natural-food grocery includes a sit-down café where you can order pizzas, sandwiches, or even sushi. $ f

BACKYARD BBQ & GRILL 223 W. Fifth St., New Albany IN., 945-8310. A wide variety of barbecue, in generous portions, with exceptional side dishes make this large dining hall in New Albany well worth a trip. $ f BAKE’S BARBEQUE 5427 Valley Station Rd., 9350999. Bake’s ribs are smoked to such tender perfection that the meat slides off the bone. This is

four-star barbecue, fully competitive with the region’s best. $$ BOOTLEG BARBECUE COMPANY 9704 Bardstown Rd., 239-2722, 7508 Preston Hwy., 968-5657. Bootleg Barbecue offers a touch of rusticity and a good helping of country hospitality, as it dishes out hearty portions of well prepared and affordable smoked meats and fixin’s. It’s one of the few places in Louisville where you can get Western Kentucky-style mutton barbecue. $ f BRANDON’S BAR-B-QUE 9246 Westport Rd., 4266666. Service is cafeteria-style in this shoppingcenter establishment featuring Tennessee-style barbecue, where hickory-smoked barbecue sandwiches and filling, affordable dinners are the specialty. $ CLARK BOY BAR-B-Q 6728 Johnsontown Rd., 9335577. If it’s a little off the beaten path, there’s nothing the matter with that. Clark Boy’s reasonably priced Western Kentucky-style barbecue is well worth a special trip. Like many mom ’n’ pop eateries, it accepts cash only, no plastic. $ CLEON’S RIB SHACK 701 Algonquin Pkwy., 6350750. It’s a shack, for sure, and Cleon keeps some weird hours, but that’s part of the mystique, and if you can catch him when the smoke is rising, you’re in for some manly spare ribs and soulful sides. $ f DAMON’S 1876 Hurstbourne Pkwy., 495-6111. If you’ve got a hankering for oversize ribs and a sports-bar environment for noisy fun, Damon’s might be just the place for you. But then, if you’re in the mood for a quiet steak dinner in a quieter environment, Damon’s can deliver that too. Award-winning ribs and big-screen entertainment are the primary draw at the local outpost of this 140-unit chain. $$ p FAMOUS DAVE’S BAR-B-QUE 8605 Citadel Way, 493-2812, 1351 Veterans Pkwy., Clarksville, IN, 2823283. This franchise chain operation may be based in the twin cities, but it looks like a Georgia gas station with its exuberant, if tongue-in-cheek faux country decor. The important thing, though, is the food, and Dave’s excels with genuine, hickory-smoked barbecue. $$ p f FINLEY’S HICKORY SMOKED BAR-B-Q 1500 W. Broadway, 581-0298. Rib tips are the specialty but you’ll find turkey legs, ham, half-chickens, pork chops and shredded beef and pork—all for dinners or sandwiches, and barbecued pig’s feet for the BBQ purists. $ f FIREHOUSE BAR B Q 6435 Bardstown Rd., 2397800, 3065 Breckinridge Ln., 459-5201, 808 Lyndon Ln., 327-6304. Fire fighters, it is said, eat heartily and well. It’s no coincidence, then, that Firehouse Bar B Q pays homage to fire departments in general and the Fern Creek Fire Department in particular. The barbecue and country fixin’s stand comparison to the best firehouse cuisine. $ f JIMBO’S BBQ 801 Kenwood Dr., 375-1888. This South End barbecue shack, an outpost of a popular spot in Corydon, IN, offers a fine range of barbecue meats skillfully smoked on the premises, with sauce served on the side as it should be. $ JUCY’S SMOKEHOUSE BAR-B-QUE 7626 Lagrange Rd., 241-5829. Jucy’s offers exceptionally good Texas-style barbecue from a little wooden shack that looks just like a country BBQ joint should. Highly recommended. $$ f MARK’S FEED STORE 11422 Shelbyville Rd., 2440140, 1514 Bardstown Rd., 458-1570, 10316 Dixie Hwy., 933-7707, 513 E. IN Hwy. 131, Clarksville, IN, 285-1998. Named for its first restaurant’s location in a former feed store with that down-home country feel, Mark’s impresses with high-quality hickory-smoked pork and chicken, and rich, silken South Carolina barbecue sauce, the yellow mustard-based variety. $$ f


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OLE HICKORY PIT BAR-B-QUE 6106 Shepherdsville Rd., 968-0585. Located in an attractive house not far from General Electric’s Appliance Park, this Louisville relative of a famous Western Kentucky barbecue pit is well worth the trip from anywhere in town. $ PEPPER SHAKER CHILI & BAR-B-Q 4912 Preston Hwy., 964-3011, 4918 Poplar Level Rd., 962-7077. Looking for the real thing in barbecue? Whoop! Here it is! This tiny spot near Standiford Field offers few amenities—it’s primarily for take-out— but a squadron of heavy black-iron smokers burn through cords of hickory to turn out some of the town’s best barbecue at a price that’s right. $ p PETTERSON’S BAR-B-Q BARN 7705 Hwy 311, Sellersburg, IN, 248-9063. Another new and welcome entry in Southern Indiana, we’re reliably informed that this down-home-style barbecue eatery offers comfort food “as good as pocket aces and Texas hold ’em.” $ PICNICATERS BBQ & CATERING 514 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd., 584-7427. Located across from Louisville Gardens, this place puts the hot sauce, wings and chops right in the middle of a hungry business district. $ f PIGASUS 822 State St., New Albany, IN, 949-7427. Hoping that the fourth time is a charm, this funky barbecue joint returns to the small New Albany house where it started. The original proprietor, Gary Needham, is no longer involved, but management reportedly has preserved some of his memorable smoked-meat recipes. $ PIT STOP BAR-B-QUE 612 S. Fifth St., 584-4054. Genuine Texas barbecue, dry and tender meat, red-rimmed and savory from hours in the smoker, is the style served here. March up to the window, place your order, bus your own plate. No muss, no fuss, and it is very good. $ f RUBBIE’S BAR-B-QUE & BREW 6905 Southside Dr., 367-0007. This South End family knows how to

do BBQ. It may be off the beaten path for some folks but here you’ll find the bounty of secret BBQ recipes. $ p f e SCOTTY’S RIBS AND MORE 14049 Shelbyville Rd., 244-6868. Ribs, pork, chicken a la carte and dinners. The small East End venue moves a lot of pizzas and salads as well. $$ p SMOKEY BONES BBQ 2525 Hurstbourne Gem Ln., 491-7570. A newish “concept” of the Orlandobased Darden chain that runs Olive Garden, Red Lobster and Bahama Breeze, this hot Hurstbourne spot offers good ribs in a noisy sports-bar environment that emulates a Colorado ski lodge. $$ p SMOKIN’ BBQ 1611 Charlestown-New Albany Pike, New Albany, IN, 283-4061. $ f TONY ROMA’S 150 N. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 327-8500. From the tomato tang to a smoky Blue Ridge savor, Roma’s advertises its ribs as the best dressed in town. Burgers, chicken and steaks are available as well, but we recommend the racks and baby backs of pork and beef. $$$ p VINCE STATEN’S OLD TIME BARBEQUE 9219 US 42, 228-7427. Author Vince Staten, who literally wrote the book on barbecue (Real Barbecue), makes his own in this Prospect storefront, and the smoked goodies here rate as good as any I ever ate. $

BEEF O’BRADY’S 239 Blankenbaker Pkwy., 2542322, 5628 Bardstown Rd., 239-2226, 106 Sears Ave., 897-3725, 10000 Brownsboro Rd., 327-8881. If you think your basic sports pub is only suitable for guys guzzling beer, take another look: Beef O’Brady’s puts the “family” in “family sports pub,” offering a wholesome environment that will suit Mom and Pop and the kids too. $

BIG DAVE’S OUTPOST 1801 Bardstown Rd., 4593290. Now open in the old house at Bardstown Road and Speed Avenue recently vacated by Judge Roy Bean, Big Dave’s evokes a hint of the happy memory of the old Fat Cats that once held court here: In similar fashion, it’s a casual, laidback neighborhood saloon, where libations and simple pub grub are the order of business. $ p f e BLUE MULE SPORTS CAFÉ 10301 Taylorsville Rd., 240-0051. Longtime buddies John O’Connor and Jim “Mule” Riley talked for years about opening a restaurant and sports bar. Riley died before their dream came true. But now O’Connor proudly presides over this 90-seat casual Jeffersontown eatery and watering hole, and he has named it in affectionate memory of his friend “Mule.” $ p e BUFFALO WILD WINGS (BW-3’S) 6801 Dixie Hwy., 935-1997, 3900 Shelbyville Rd., 899-7732, 9134 Taylorsville Rd., 499-2356, 3584 Springhurst Blvd., 394-9596, 12901 Shelbyville Rd., 254-9464, 1055 Bardstown Rd., 454-3635. As much a sports bar as a restaurant, this national franchise chain offers tasty snack-type fare, including the chain’s trademark Buffalo chicken wings. $$ p f CHAMPIONS SPORTS RESTAURANT 280 W. Jefferson St. (Louisville Marriott), 671-4246. Another popular option at the striking new downtown Marriott, Champions provides a fun, casual dining alternative with a Kentucky sports theme—and a gallery of big-screen televisions to keep the sports action flowing as freely as the libations and upscale pub grub. $$ p f CRIBSTONE PUB 1202 Bardstown Rd., 459-3339. This tiny Bardstown Road eatery turns a neighborhood bar into a lobster and steak house, where fine seafood and beef is served without pomp or circumstance in a setting so casual that you can wear your shorts and T-shirt to dine. $$$ p

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DELTA RESTAURANT 434 W. Market St., 584-0860. It’s not quite as historic as Gideon Shryock’s Jefferson County Courthouse around the corner, but this popular bar and short-order spot seems as if it has been a hangout for lawyers and the courthouse crowd for just about as long as there’s been a Courthouse. $ p DIAMOND PUB & BILLIARDS 3814 Frankfort Ave., 895-7513. $ p f DUTCH’S TAVERN 3922 Shelbyville Rd., 895-9004. Do you like guitars with your grub? A popular half-way-home hangout for decades in the heart of St. Matthews, this no-frills but all charm pub serves up a hardy plate lunch by day and amps up the action with music by night. $ p e FLABBY’S SCHNITZELBURG 1101 Lydia St., 637-9136. Family-owned since 1952, Flabby’s is a quintessential Germantown saloon. It’s also one of the city’s top destinations for inexpensive downhome eats, from authentic German dishes to fantastic fried chicken on weekends. $ FLANAGAN’S ALE HOUSE 934 Baxter Ave., 5853700. Gourmet pizzas, hoagies, and an enormous beer selection draw Highlands folks to this cozy neighborhood pub. For a late night pizza (the kitchen’s open until 2 a.m.), it’s one of the best options in the city. $$ p FOUR KINGS CAFÉ 4642 Jennings Ln., 968-2930. Steam-table service featuring spaghetti and meatballs, lasagna and chicken attract a hungry lunch crowd at this casual spot, and brunch specialties are just as popular. $ p GERSTLE’S PLACE 3801 Frankfort Ave., 899-3609. A popular St. Matthews neighborhood tavern since 1924. Although dining is secondary to booze and sports here, the food goes well beyond mere pub grub. $ p e GRANVILLE INN 1601 S. Third St., 635-6475. A longtime gathering place for U of L students, faculty and fans, this sturdy redbrick tavern just north of the university campus offers a good variety of bar munchies, sandwiches and simple grilled fare plus pizza. It’s perhaps best known, though, for the signature Granville Burger, widely reputed as one of the best burgers in town. $ GREAT AMERICAN GRILL 2735 Crittenden Dr. (Hilton), 637-2424. Located in the Louisville International Airport Hilton. Salads, burgers, pastas and sandwiches are available for the casual diner; main entrees include New York strip, filet of salmon and more. $ p f HITCHING POST INN 7314 Fegenbush Ln., 2394724. In addition to its full bar and beer garden, and lively conversation, the Hitching Post Inn offers an array of pub grub, including burgers, chicken tenders, and sandwiches. $ p HOOPS GRILL AND SPORTS BAR 12205 Westport Rd., 327-8002, 6733 Strawberry Ln., 375-4667. The name says it all: sports, casual dining and good things to drink all find their natural meeting place in these friendly neighborhood spots where hot wings and hoops reign supreme. $ p f HOOTERS 4120 Dutchmans Ln., 895-7100; 4948 Dixie Hwy., 449-4194; 7701 Preston Hwy., 9681606; 700 W. Riverside Dr., Jeffersonville, IN, 2189485; 941 East Hwy. 131, Clarksville, IN 284-9464. JABBER’S FAMILY SPORTS GRILL 6121 Bardstown Rd., 231-3687 $$ p THE LIGHTHOUSE 202 Main St., Jeffersonville, IN, 283-0077. This lighthouse has been a beacon of casual, home cooking and tavern environment for years. Daily specials, appetizers, chicken and fish baskets, salads and desserts round out the menu. A full bar in back and dining area in front serviced by a friendly staff invites regular return trips. $ MICHAEL MURPHY’S RESTAURANT 701 S. First St., 587-7916. This full service restaurant and bar has accommodated hardy thirsts and appetites for a 80 Spring 2005 www.foodanddiningmagazine.com


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couple of generations. Despite the Irish appeal, the food is American and lots of it. One particular claim to fame is their hamburger menu. $ p NEW DIRECTION BAR & GRILL 2630 Chamberlain Ln., 243-8429. $ p e R PLACE PUB 9603 Whipps Mill Rd., 425-8516. A neighborhood landmark for 15 years, R Place used to be known mostly for its libations. But that was before co-owner Cres Bride’s wife Tiffany became the chef and introduced a hearty plate lunch, with daily main course and choice of two sides. Diners also give thumbs up to first-rate chicken wings and the famous R Place burger with Maker’s Mark sauce. $ p e

CUMBERLAND BREWS 1576 Bardstown Rd., 4588727. Giving new meaning to the term “microbrewery,” Cumberland Brews may be one of the smallest eateries in town. It’s usually packed, earning its crowds the old-fashioned way by providing very good food, friendly service, and high-quality hand-crafted artisan beers. $ f e RICH O’S PUBLIC HOUSE 3312 Plaza Dr., New Albany IN, 949-2804. Decent barbecue and pub grub make Rich O’s a popular hangout, and his remarkable beer list of more than 100 selections from around the world—and now locally brewed craft beers—attracts beer lovers from all over. $ e

SADDLE RIDGE SALOON Fourth Street Live, 5693507. $ p f e SAINT’S 131 Breckinridge Ln., 891-8883. Almost like two restaurants in one, Saints—occupying the St. Matthews space formerly known as Jake & Elwood’s—features both a small, intimate, candlelighted room and a larger, happily boisterous main room with the look and feel of a sports bar. Saints is mostly about the bars and the music, but don’t overlook its casual fare, from salads to pasta and excellent pizzas. $$ p e STEINERT’S GRILL & PUB 2239 Charlestown Rd., New Albany IN, 945-8827. This is a cross between an old fashioned neighborhood tavern (with an aged and cozy ambience) and a trendy sports bar (with leanings in the direction of IU). Hearty burgers, rich soups, salads, and a full bar make this a hidden gem. $ p e SULLY’S SALOON Fourth Street Live, 585-4100. $$ pf TAILGATERS SPORTS BAR & GRILL 2787 S. Floyd St., 637-5241. Tailgating? No need to open your lawn chair on the Papa John’s Stadium parking lot before the U of L game now that Tailgaters is here. Billed as a premier destination for good food and lots of fun, this casual spot features classic American favorites and seafood specialties, plus a full bar, TVs and an expansive game room. $ p fe THE TRESTLE SPORTS CAFÉ 263-7130 $ p VIC’S CAFÉ 4338. $ p

3701 Hopewell Rd.,

E. Market St., New Albany, IN, 944-

WOODFORD RESERVE BAR & GRILLE Louisville International Airport, 363-2526. Named after local distiller Brown-Forman’s artisanal brand of Bourbon, this is the airport’s fine-dining facility, serving Kentucky-style dishes in a sit-down environment. $ ZAZOO’S 102 Bauer Ave., 894-8030. If you’re looking for casual dining, ZaZoo’s offers a mighty appealing option with its laid-back and welcoming neighborhood-bar feeling. The fare is simple but well prepared, and goes a bit beyond pub grub to cover quick bites like chicken tenders and a “pizza burger.” $ p f e

BLUEGRASS BREWING COMPANY 3929 Shelbyville Rd., 899-7070, 636 E. Main St., 584-2739, 2 Theater Square, 568-2224. A must-stop destination for beer lovers on the national artisanal-brew trail, but it’s more than just a brewpub. BBC’s management gives equally serious attention to both liquid and solid fare, making this a great place to stop in for both dinner and a beer. $ p f e BROWNING’S BREWERY 401 E. Main St. (Slugger Field), 515-0174. Making beautiful use of the historic red-brick building that houses Slugger Field, Browning’s offers first-rate brewpub beers and tasty, informal fare that ranges from pub grub to pastas, to pizza. $$ p f e

CAFÉ KILIMANJARO 649 S. Fourth St., 583-4332. Café Kilimanjaro showcases Black-heritage cuisine, offering well-prepared treats from Africa, the Caribbean and Black America ranging from fiery Ethiopian wots (meat barbecue) to spicy Jamaican jerk cuisine to the comforting soul food of the American South. $ p f CHEZ SENEBA AFRICAN RESTAURANT 1215 Gilmore Ln., 968-8659. Add yet another interesting ethnic cuisine to Louisville’s increasingly international dining scene. Friendly folks serve generous portions of filling, spicy Senegalese cuisine from West Africa in this tiny (three-table) free-standing building at Gilmore and Preston Highway. $ QUEEN OF SHEBA ETHIOPIAN 3315 Bardstown Rd., 459-6301. Fans of Abyssinia, the Ethiopian restaurant on Frankfort Avenue, will be pleased to learn that Queen of Sheba is their old favorite, with the same owners and essentially the same menu, now moved to the small motel on Bardstown Road that formerly housed India Palace. New is an all-you-can-eat Ethiopian lunch buffet on weekdays. $

2 HAHN’S MONGOLIAN GRILL Stonybrook Shopping Center, 493-0234. Thirteenth Century Mongol warriors used to turn their steel shields to use as frying pans over the campfire, using their swords as spoons. 2 Hahn’s carries their spirit forward. This all-you-can-eat buffet is fun, and the food is fine. $$ p A TASTE OF CHINA 1167 S. Fourth St., 585-5582. $ ASIAN BUFFET 3813 Charlestown Rd., New Albany IN, 945-1888. Competent cookery and careful management that ensures buffet offerings stay fresh and hot makes this Southern Indiana buffet a good choice among the growing crowd of allyou-can-eat Asian spots. $ ASIAN PEARL 2060 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 4956800. Asian Pearl advertises its Chinese Grand Buffet as “The Largest Buffet Selection in Kentuckiana,” prompting a trip to check it out. It stands out from the crowd by offering a selection of Thai dishes in addition to the usual Chinese. $ AUGUST MOON 2269 Lexington Rd., 456-6569. August Moon’s secret ingredient is the culinary oversight of Chef Peng Looi, better known as the force behind Asiatique. Housed in a soaring, open space with a Zen master’s style. Consistent commitment in the kitchen and from the staff makes it a top spot for Asian fare. A lovely patio at the rear affords an alfresco dining experience overlooking shady Beargrass Creek. $$$ p f BAMBOO HOUSE 4036 Poplar Level Rd., 451-3113. An old-timer among local Chinese restaurants, this Southeastern Louisville spot may not offer the trendiest Asian fare, but it’s a reliable source for the familiar Cantonese-American standards. $

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CHINA BUFFET 706 E. Hwy 131, Clarksville, IN, 2888989. Chinese buffets are ubiquitous, but this one is squarely in the upper range. Regularly refreshed steam tables, attentively fried rice, and properly spicy General Tso’s Chicken raise it above the runof-the-mill places typical of the genre. $

CHINATOWN 4000 Dutchmans Ln., 896-9888, 4214 Outer Loop, 968-2688. If you’re hungry, you can get more to eat here for less than just about anyplace else in town, and the weekend seafood buffet in particular is a deal that’s hard to beat. $

CHINA GARDEN 7309 Preston Hwy., 968-4672. A busy restaurant with the double pleasure of Chinese and American menu items. $

CHINESE CHEF 2619 S. Fourth St., 634-0979. $

CHINA INN 1925 S. Fourth St., 636-2020. It’s not the posh, private Faculty Club, but this little Asian spot may be one of the most popular eateries around the University of Louisville’s Belknap Campus. It’s generally packed with students, professors, and a squadron of campus police so large that one wonders who’s watching the campus. $ CHINA KING 3830 Ruckriegel Prkwy., 240-0500. $ CHINA KING Highlander Point Dr., Floyds Knobs, IN., 923-1288. $ CHINA KING PALACE 6203 Old Shepherdsville Rd., 969-9696. On the edge of the county line, there’s a bustling kitchen that prepares sweet, sour and spicy Asian and Chinese entrees and a la carte items to go. Carry out service only. $

CHINESE EXPRESS 3228 Crums Ln., 448-1360. $

DOUBLE DRAGON II 12480 LaGrange Rd., 241-7766, 9901 LaGrange Rd., 326-0099, 6832 Bardstown Rd., 231-3973. $ DOUBLE DRAGON BUFFET 233 Whittington Pkwy., 339-8897. A sizable buffet in a chic East End shopping strip, offers a good range of Chinese treats on its all-you-can-eat buffet. The fare seems prepared with attention and care. $ DOUBLE DRAGON 8 231 S. Fifth St., 587-8686. $

CHINESE RESTAURANT 8605 Preston Hwy., 9687450. $

DOUBLE DRAGON 9 9501 Taylorsville Rd., 267-5353. $

CHONG GARDEN 10341 Dixie Hwy., 935-1628. $

DRAGON GARDEN 2120 Bardstown Rd., 459-3311. $

CHOPSTICKS 416 E. Broadway, 589-9145. $

DYNASTY BUFFET 2400 Lime Kiln Ln., 339-8868. The continuing proliferation of all-you-can-eat Chinese buffets never fails to amaze me. Most of them look pretty much alike, and the food tends to be similar too. But I’m happy to report that Dynasty Buffet ranks well above the median. $$

CHOPSTICKS HOUSE 2112 W. Broadway, 772-3231. $ CHUNG KING CHINESE AMERICAN RESTAURANT 110 E. Market St., 584-8880. $ CITY WOK 526 W. Main St., 583-7238. $ CRYSTAL CHINESE 3901 W. Market St., 776-9702. $ DOUBLE DRAGON 1255 Goss Ave., 635-5656. A standout among fast-food shopping-center Chinese eateries, Double Dragon hits on all cylinders, turning out consistently well-prepared and flavorful fare. $

EASTERN HOUSE 5372 Dixie Hwy., 568-2688. Serving Chinese and American food from the menu or the buffet. $ EGGROLL KING 4819 Dixie Hwy, 449-3614. $ EGGROLL MACHINE 1216 Bardstown Rd., 459-1259. A Highlands staple for good reason. This portion of the Mimosa Café does a brisk business. The Sesame Chicken is one of our publishers’ favorites. $$ p EMPEROR OF CHINA 2210 Holiday Manor Shopping Center, 426-1717. One of Louisville’s fanciest and most noteworthy Chinese restaurants, the Emperor’s quarters are stylishly strewn across multiple levels of a former suburban movie theater. Outstanding. $$ p EMPRESS OF CHINA 2249 Hikes Ln., 451-2500. Older sister to The Emperor of China, the Empress was one of Louisville’s first serious, authentic upscale Cantonese restaurants, and its fare still stands up to fancy spots in New York’s Chinatown. $$ p FIRST WOK 3967 Seventh St. Rd., 448-0588. $ FORMOSA CHINESE RESTAURANT 2116 State St., New Albany, IN, 948-2540. One of the leading Southern Indiana entries in the Chinese-restaurant sweepstakes, Formosa offers a hearty buffet and, Chinese friends report, “a Taiwanese taste.” $ GOLDEN BUDDHA 8000 Preston Hwy., 968-7700. $ GOLDEN WALL 3111 Fern Valley Rd., 968-9717. $ GRAND BUFFET 5362 Dixie Hwy., 447-8833. $ GREAT WALL 2206 Brownsboro Rd., 891-8881. This Clifton restaurant ranks high up in the fast-food Chinese pack. Offering steaming-hot, competently prepared and flavorful dishes. $ GREAT WOK 2502 Preston Hwy., 634-1918. Just about every shopping center in town has a fastfood Chinese spot, but this one stands out, generating a buzz of word-of-mouth publicity about its well-crafted Chinese dishes at a bargainbasement price. $ HAPPY DRAGON 2600 W. Broadway, 778-2573. Catering to office and residential customers, this Chinese restaurant has served the West Broadway community for many years. $ f HARVEST MOON 10476 Shelbyville Rd., 245-2100. Modern and efficient in its East End shopping center location, Harvest Moon is a cut above fastfood Chinese; better yet, it adds a few Vietnamese dishes to the bill of fare. $ HONG KONG CHINESE RESTAURANT 345 New Albany Plaza, New Albany, IN., 945-1818. $ HONG KONG FAST FOOD 5312 S. Third St., 3678828. One of the many international eateries in Iroquois Manor, this fast-food Chinese spot offers Cantonese standards hot and fast and inexpensively. Check the daily specials for an occasional intriguing item. $

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HOUSE OF DRAGON 126 Breckenridge Ln., 8937994. Not just fast food, this longtime St. Matthews favorite offers an extensive menu of Chinese regional dishes in an attractive sit-down setting. $$

ORIENTAL STAR 4212 Bishop Ln., 452-9898. A longtime area favorite in this heavy traffic lunch area. This establishment is quite good with Lo Mein Noodles, and Sweet and Sour Chicken. $

IMPERIAL PALACE 5316 Bardstown Rd., 491-8228. $

PANDA CHINESE RESTAURANT 9543 US 42., 2286400. $

JADE PALACE 1109 Herr Ln., 425-9878. When I’ve got a hankering for brunch, I choose Chinese. Jade Palace is a decent place for Chinese food at any time, but don’t miss it at mid-day Friday through Monday, when it offers the metro area’s only dim sum (Chinese brunch) menu. $$ p

PEKING CITY 3571 Springhurst Blvd., 425-0188. The regular menu features Chinese-restaurant standards. If you have a yen for the exotic, see if you can get the authentic Taiwanese menu—an intriguing regional cuisine new to Louisville, but not always offered to non-Chinese. $

JASMINE 13823 English Villa Dr., 244-8896. Operated by the owners of Wang’s Wok, another above-average Middletown Chinese spot, recently opened this charming Asian eatery, where you can enjoy familiar Chinese-American plates or indulge your more adventurous side with a selection of more unusual authentic dishes from the “Chinese Menu,” available on request. $ f

QUICK WOK 801 W. Broadway, 584-6519. $ ROYAL GARDEN 5717 Preston Hwy., 969-3788. $$ SESAME CHINESE RESTAURANT 9409 Shelbyville Rd., 339-7000. Not just another shopping-center Chinese restaurant, this East End eatery has provided some of the best fine-dining Chinese meals I’ve enjoyed in Louisville. $$ p SHANGHAI RESTAURANT 526 S. Fifth St. 568-8833. $

JUMBO BUFFET 2731 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 4950028. Housed in a good-looking dining room, high on Chinatown-style glitz and glitter, Jumbo offers a standard all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet, with a larger-than-average selection of American dishes for those who want something less exotic. $$ KING BUFFET 1801 Priority Way, 266-8886. Another in the growing niche of glitzy Chinese chromeand-plastic buffets, King Buffet offers a standard selection of all-you-can-eat dishes, with a few sushi items. $ KING WOK 291 N. Hubbards Ln., 899-7188. Another of the city’s many tiny shopping-center fast-food Chinese eateries, King Wok offers all the familiar standards plus a small lunch buffet. $

SICHUAN GARDEN 9850 Linn Station Rd., 4266767. One of my favorite Chinese restaurants in Louisville and another that has stood the test of time, Sichuan Garden offers high-end Chinatown

style and well-made dishes, plus a few Thai specialties to spice up the bill of fare. $ WANG’S WOK 11517 Shelbyville Rd., 244-9898. This bright and attractive spot in Middletown is a step above your usual Chinese fast food. Dishes are served on attractive gold-rimmed white china, and there’s table service with a friendly, fluent hostess. Worth a special trip. $ WOK EXPRESS 234 W. Broadway, 583-8988. This corner spot has housed a variety of restaurants over the years. The latest tenant isn’t the fanciest, but it might be one of the most affordable. $ WONTON EXPRESS 3000 Hikes Ln., 452-2646. Traditional Chinese fare. Family-owned-andoperated, this popular neighborhood establishment has enjoyed a steady patronage for seventeen years. $ YANG KEE NOODLE 7900 Shelbyville Rd. (Oxmoor Center), 426-0800. This locally owned and operated Oxmoor spot is colorful and stylish. It offers an intriguing array of appealing noodle and rice dishes from all over Asia with fast-food efficiency and prices happily matched by sitdown restaurant quality and style. $ f YEN CHING 1818 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 491-3581. $

tastefully exciting. casually chic.

KING’S BUFFET 5538 New Cut Rd., 375-2236. $ LUCKY DRAGON 809 S. KY Hwy 53, Lagrange, KY, 222-1568. The pastoral setting of Oldham County surrounding the Day’s Inn Motel might not be the first place you would look for upscale Mandarin style dining, but prepare to be surprised. Guests are treated to Far East hospitality and a varied menu. $ LUCKY HOUSE BUFFET 4030 Taylorsville Rd., 4591188. A fresh idea on Asian dining, this generous Hikes Point buffet serves the menu classics from China as well as some Japanese and American entrees. $$ MANCHU WOK 7900 Shelbyville Rd. (Oxmoor Shopping Center), 429-8207. $ NEW WORLD BUFFET 9228 Westport Rd., 4231788. I rate this one of the city’s best (if not quite the biggest) all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet, not only because it offers a good selection of Chinese dishes but, more important, because it shows a consistent commitment to quality. $ ONION RESTAURANT TEA HOUSE 4211 Charlestown Rd., New Albany, IN, 981-0188. Masterful Chinese and Japanese cuisine (including magnificent hotpots, donburi dishes, and wooden-bucket steamed rice) set this airy restaurant apart from the dozens of other Asian spots in the Louisville area. Beer and wine are available. $$ ORIENTAL EXPRESS 12567 Shelbyville Rd., 2449838. This spot in Middletown stands a cut above its shopping-center status in its atmosphere, and maybe two cuts above the median in its food, a smorgasbord of both Chinese and Japanese fare that is good enough to justify a special trip. $ ORIENTAL HOUSE 4302 Shelbyville Rd., 897-1017. One of the oldest continuously operated Chinese restaurants in Louisville, this St. Matthews landmark moves up a notch under new owners, featuring both traditional Chinese-American and now, authentic Cantonese. $ p

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YOU-CARRYOUT-A 1551 E. Tenth St., Jeffersonville, IN, 288-8313, 827 Eastern Blvd., Clarksville, IN, 282-8881, 3308 Plaza Dr., 944-9866. $

EDNA’S GOOD STUFF 9810 Taylorsville Rd., 2677500. Add another Asian cuisine to the increasingly diverse selection available in Louisville. Edna’s is good Filipino stuff, filling rice-and-noodle fare that blends influences of Spain, China and the Americas in a cuisine that’s very easy to like. Popular dishes include lumpia (Filipino egg roll) and pancit (a delicious noodle stir-fry). The all-you-can-eat Sunday buffet offers exceptional value. $$

BENDOYA SUSHI BAR 217 S. Fifth St., 581-0700. Adding international flair to its downtown neighborhood, Bendoya Sushi Bar is a genuine, serious sushi bar in a storefront just across the street from the courthouse. $ FUJI JAPANESE STEAKHOUSE 3576 Springhurst Blvd., 339-1978, 12905 Shelbyville Rd., 253-0036. Part of the fun of sitting at the sushi bar is that you get to watch the chef at work. Put in your order, then sit back, sip your tea while the artist creates edible delights. This suburban sushi bar does the job well. $$ p ICHIBAN SAMURAI 1510 Lake Shore Ct., 412-3339. This large Japanese-farmhouse building housed Benihana for many years. New management offers similar delights, with the traditional sliceand-dice food show and good sushi. Best deal, while the offer lasts: All-you-can-eat sushi nightly until the karaoke starts at 9 p.m. $$$ p KOBE STEAK HOUSE 301 S. Indiana Ave., Jeffersonville IN, 280-8500. Southern Indiana’s

first serious Japanese restaurant is drawing crowds with its exceptional sushi bar, with skilled and friendly chefs who can be relied on to fashion fresh and tasty bites that are just about certain to please. $$$ p MAIDO ESSENTIAL JAPANESE 1758 Frankfort Ave., 894-8775. Not just another sushi bar, cool and stylish Maido is Louisville’s first and only “izakaya”-style restaurant in the style of Kansai, the region surrounding Japan’s second city, Osaka. It’s also a sake bar, pouring a good variety of artisanal rice wine. $$ f OSAKA SUSHI BAR 2039 Frankfort Ave., 894-9501. This bright and cheery Japanese restaurant and sushi bar is named after Japan’s second largest city and the home of one of its most historic samurai castles. Sushi Chef James Lae presides, and that’s a good thing: a first-rate sushi chef, his welcoming presence and excellent English makes diners feel at home. $$ SAKURA BLUE 4600 Shelbyville Rd., 897-3600. Located in elegant, upscale quarters in a St. Matthews shopping center, Sakura Blue—direct descendant of the old, popular Bonsai—ranks among the city’s top sushi bars. $$ SAPPORO JAPANESE GRILL & SUSHI 1706 Bardstown Rd., 479-5550. Trendy, even glitzy, with hard-edged industrial decor—and most important, excellent food—Sapporo ranks in my ratings as the city’s No. 1 spot for sushi and Japanese fare. $$$ p SHOGUN JAPANESE STEAK HOUSE 9026 Taylorsville Rd., 499-5700, 4110 Hampton Lake Way, 394-0123. Shogun’s decor is attractive, and quality food and service make it a pleasant dining destination. It’s unthreatening enough to appeal to those who find exotic cuisine “challenging,” but good enough to satisfy just about anyone who craves a Japanese dinner or a bite of sushi. $$$ p

TOKYO JAPANESE RESTAURANT 2415C Lime Kiln Ln., 339-7171. It’s appealing, pleasant in atmosphere and friendly in service, and most important, this East End sushi bar serves excellent Japanese treats, prepared with care and flair from high-quality, impeccably fresh ingredients. $$

ARIRANG 4160 Bardstown Rd., 495-1004. The sign out front indicates (in English) that it’s both a Japanese sushi bar and a Korean BBQ, and a couple of lines of Korean lettering presumably say the same. More elegant than the industrial-style exterior suggests, this is a worthy stop for a fine Asian meal. $$ KIM’S ASIAN GRILLE 813 E. Market St., 595-7025. This lovable little Korean and Pan-Asian eatery occupies unimposing quarters on a gritty urban block east of downtown. Despite its downscale look, you won’t want to miss its extensive selection of Korean and Japanese favorites. Hot and sour soup may be the city’s best. $$ f KOREANA II 5009 Preston Hwy., 968-9686. One of the city’s few restaurants devoted entirely to authentic Korean fare, Koreana is worth a special trip for this ethnic cuisine that offers a hearty, spicy alternative to the more familiar Chinese. $$ LEE’S KOREAN RESTAURANT 1941 Bishop Ln., 4569714. This little spot has been a secret since the ‘70s, and it just keeps on going. Walk into what looks like a diner in an office building, but push past the counter to the back room, where you’ll find generous heaps of really authentic Korean food for next to nothing. $$

MAI’S THAI RESTAURANT 1411 E. Tenth St., Jeffersonville, IN, 282-0198. With a broad range of well-prepared and authentic Thai dishes, Mai’s is the eatery to beat among the metro area’s Thai restaurants. For both authenticity and quality, it’s right up there with the top Thai places I’ve enjoyed in New York, San Francisco and Seattle. $ SALA THAI 9114 Taylorsville Rd. (Stony Brook Shopping Center), 493-3944. Fine and fancy, Sala Thai offers Louisville an upscale Thai alternative, presenting ethnic fare in a stylish setting that places it among the best, and certainly the most upscale, of the city’s growing cadre of Thai eateries. $$ p THAI CAFÉ 2226 Holiday Manor, 425-4815. You’ll find this small café tucked into a corner of the “Holiday Manor Walk.” Owner Chavantee Snow and her family offer a small but well-prepared selection of authentic Thai dishes at very reasonable prices. $ THAI KITCHEN 5203 Dixie Highway, 448-4710. The historic House of Chen, one of the city’s first and longest-lived Chinese restaurants, is no more, but you can still get its famous egg rolls and other Chinese specialties—and Thai goodies too—under new management that has brought the Dixie corridor its first local taste of Thai. $ THAI-SIAM 3002 Bardstown Rd., 458-6871. Thai food—a fiery-aromatic cuisine that perches somewhere between China and India on the world culinary spectrum—is worth getting to know. This Highlands spot is Louisville’s first and oldest Thai eatery. $$ THAI SMILE 5 5800 Preston Hwy., 961-9018. The “5” represents the number of restaurants in this Frankfort-based mini-chain, which has restaurants in Kentucky, Tennessee and Indiana. The “Smile” represents my reaction to its simple but very well prepared Thai fare. Don’t ask for the five-chile-pepper heat unless you really mean it! $

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THAI TASTE 1977 Brownsboro Rd., 897-7682. The owner-host of this friendly, casual spot in Crescent Hill had a restaurant in Bangkok before moving to Louisville, and his experience shows. The warmth of his welcome—and the quality of the food—make Thai Taste special. $

ANNIE CAFÉ 308 W. Woodlawn, 363-4847. Annie Café ranks not just as one of my favorite Vietnamese restaurants, but one the city’s best of any variety, particularly when value and price are taken into account. Authentic Vietnamese food is made with care and served with pride. $ CAFÉ MIMOSA 1216 Bardstown Rd., 458-2233. Dating back to the ‘80s as the city’s first serious restaurant in the French-Vietnamese tradition, its current management still offers a short selection of good Vietnamese food plus Chinese-American fare, as well as one of the city’s more interesting sushi bars. $ p LEMONGRASS CAFÉ 1019 Bardstown Rd., 238-3981, 11300 Maple Brook Way, 412-8606. Lemongrass Café offers an appealing blend of Vietnamese, Thai and Chinese fare in a simple setting on Bardstown Road’s Restaurant Row that transcends an obviously low budget with style and grace. $ LITTLE SAIGON 3598 Springhurst Blvd., 425-4351. Louisville’s Vietnamese restaurant community, no longer limited to the ethnic South End, now boasts a modern, stylish outpost in the Eastern suburbs. Quality, authentic Vietnamese dishes at moderate prices burnish its allure. $ VIETNAM KITCHEN 5339 Mitscher Ave., 363-5154. This little South End storefront is well worth seeking out. The chef goes beyond the ordinary, preparing authentic Vietnamese dishes of unusual subtlety and flavor. I have yet to be disappointed with the quality of the food or service. $

SARAJEVO CAFÉ & RESTAURANT 325 Old Bardstown Rd., 456-1919. In the running for tiniest restaurant in town, this four-table spot is more beer bar than eatery, but the meat-based ethnicBosnian goodies like bureks (turnovers) and cevapi (beef sausages) are excellent. If you can get in when they’re grilling a whole baby lamb over coals, it’s an experience not to miss. $

ERIKA’S GERMAN RESTUARANT 9301 N. Hurstbourne Pkwy. 499-8822. For a city with a strong German heritage, Louisville is woefully short on authentic German restaurants, but this genuinely Germanic eatery attracts hungry crowds to Hurstbourne. Take care not to miss its former fast-food quarters just off I-64 local access ramp. $$ GASTHAUS 4812 Brownsboro Center, 899-7177. The Greipel family comes straight from Bavaria to Eastern Louisville with Gasthaus, a destination for local lovers of Germanic fare. The setting has as authentic a feeling as the hearty and delicious German dishes here. $$$

NIK’S RESTAURANT 1915 Blankenbaker Pkwy., 2611450. Nik’s menu combined “Continental dining with a Mediterranean flair” and offers both standard American fare and Mediterranean specialties with a distinct Greek-American accent that reflects the owners’ heritage. $$ e

IRISH ROVER 2319 Frankfort Ave., 899-3544, 117 E. Main St, LaGrange, 222-2286. A warm and welcoming pub with an authentic Irish accent, this is a delightful place for a tall glass of Guinness, a

snack and a bit of Irish music. I recommend the fish and chips. $ p f MOLLY MALONE’S 933 Baxter Ave., 473-1222. A carefully constructed replica of a modern urban Irish pub, Molly Malone’s is worthy addition to the city’s eating and drinking scene, as authentically Irish as the Wearin’ o’ the Green. $$ p f e O’SHEA’S TRADITIONAL IRISH PUB 956 Baxter Ave., 589-7373. A steady schedule of music, and an assortment of beers may be traditionally Irish, but the food here is mainstream American pub grub, from the cheesy fries to the Rueben sandwich. $$ p f e SHENANIGAN’S IRISH GRILL 1611 Norris Pl., 4543919. Not just a neighborhood tavern (although it’s a fine neighborhood tavern), Irish-accented Shenanigan’s goes an extra step with an estimable selection of memorable burgers. $ p f e

BRICK OVEN ITALIAN EATERY 9910 Linn Station Rd., 425-4310. There’s nothing that tastes and smells as good as Northern Italian cuisine as it comes out of a brick oven. The cutting board is a blur with sandwiches, salads and appetizers and the wine is red and dry. $ BUCA DI BEPPO 2051 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 4932426. Buca di Beppo’s recipe has all the necessary ingredients: huge portions of excellent food served with flair and the Buca scene is fun, a conscious parody of the exuberant decor of family ItalianAmerican restaurants of the 1950s. $$ p CARRABBA’S ITALIAN GRILL 617 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 412-2218. Carrabba’s isn’t your ordinary suburban shopping-center franchise eatery. This place dramatically exceeds expectations. From warmed bread dishes with quality olive oil to first-rate ItalianAmerican fare at reasonable prices. $$ p f

ZEN GARDEN 2240 Frankfort Ave., 895-9114. A vegetarian restaurant must pass one simple test: at the end of the meal, I must not miss meat. Zen Garden passes this test with flying wok and chopsticks. $ f

BEHAR CAFÉ 5600 National Turnpike, 368-5658. This shopping-center storefront has become a popular after-work gathering spot for the city’s growing community of immigrants from Bosnia, for whom it’s a comfortable place to get a drink, a sausage, and feel at home. $ DJULI 5312 S. Third St., 368-5199. Bosnian fare is the specialty in this tiny spot in the increasingly international culinary smorgasbord at Iroquois Manor shopping center. Bosnian immigrants appear to be the primary clientele, but everyone’s welcome to discover this hearty Yugoslavian cuisine. $ NERMANA’S CUISINE 2250 Frankfort Ave., 721-8998. One of the city’s more recent Bosnian arrivals has gained wide popularity for its fine fare and excellent service. This family operation in a small, cozy and inviting old frame house in Crescent Hill offers a good sampling of hearty and warming Bosnian cuisine. $$ f e PAPILLON GRILL & BAR 1616 Grinstead Dr., 562-0058. This friendly little Eastern European spot is run by Bosnian immigrants who offer tasty fare and casual elegance in a serious effort to become the city’s first white-tablecloth example of fine Balkan cuisine. $$ p RUFAD’S KEBOB 1613 Bardstown Rd., 479-9796. Arslan Redsepovic—a refugee and restaurateur from the former Yugoslavian countries BosniaHerzegovina and Montenegro—introduces us to the delights of Bosnia’s cuisine at a fair price. $ f www.foodanddiningmagazine.com Spring 2005 85


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COME BACK INN 909 Swan St., 627-1777, 415 Spring St., Jeffersonville IN, 285-1777. With both its branches located in urban neighborhoods, Come Back Inn looks pretty much like any other neighborhood saloon. But unlike most Louisville neighborhood saloons, this one houses a family Italian spot that wouldn’t be out of place in Chicago or Brooklyn. $ p FERD GRISANTI 10212 Taylorsville Rd., 267-0050. An East End landmark for 30 years, Ferd Grisanti’s is as comfortable as a close friend’s home. Friendly and unpretentious hospitality, the quiet but not staid atmosphere, and the fine Italian food prompts the comment, “They do everything so well, and they make it look so easy.” $$$ p LENTINI’S 1543 Bardstown Rd., 459-3020. The more things change, the more they stay the same, and happily for hungry Louisvillians, this old saying holds true at Lentini’s, where it’s all-Italian, all of the time, with old family recipes, authentically prepared and served with style in a classic Italianeatery setting, plus a first-rate Italian wine list with many selections available by the glass. $$ p

choice of Italian-American entrees, with a great view of the city from its riverside location. $ p f

and a full range of Indian dinner items, it has built a loyal clientele. $ p

ROMANO’S MACARONI GRILL 401 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 423-9220. The Italian-style menu at this casual, Dallas-based family chain includes appetizers, salads, pastas, veal and desserts. Chefs entertain while creating wood-fired pizzas. $$ p

TAJ INDIA 9904 Linn Station Rd., 412-5579. This Plainview Indian eatery, popular with Louisville’s Indian community, attracts vegetarians and omnivores alike with an excellent selection of meatless dishes on a menu that also provides Indian meat, poultry and seafood dishes made in an authentic style. $

SPAGHETTI SHOP 4657 Outer Loop, 969-5545, 2669 Charlestown Rd., New Albany, IN, 9445400. Baked pasta dishes, subs, salads and appetizers are prepared while you wait. $ VOLARE 2300 Frankfort Ave., 894-4446. Benvenuto “Benny” Siddu brings to Louisville the upscale Italian concepts he built in Chicago with the Sinatra-evoking Volare and Cantare. It makes its mark on the local dining scene with a broad range of Italian dishes, suave service and a luxurious but comfortable setting. $$$ p f

BABYLON 1971 Brownsboro Rd., 899-9100. With excellent if simple authentic Iraqi fare at rockbottom prices and an attitude that says “Welcome, we’re glad you’re here!”—plus belly dancing on weekends—Babylon offers a powerful reason to head straight for the East End and a meal at this charming little place. $ f

WILLIE’S ITALIAN 8533 Terry Rd., 933-1080. $

GRAPE LEAF 2217 Frankfort Ave., 897-1774. Yet another Middle Eastern eatery, yet another good inexpensive source of food on Frankfort Avenue. $ f

LUIGI’S 702 W. Main St., 589-0005. If you think one pizza is pretty much like another, you may not have sampled New York City-style pizza, a treat that you’ll find on just about every street corner there, but only Luigi’s offers in its authentic form in the Derby City. $

DE LA TORRE’S 1606 Bardstown Rd., 456-4955. From Central Spain, authentic Castilian food ranging from tapas to a memorable paella make this Bardstown Road standby a unique experience reminiscent of dining on a square in Madrid. $$$

MARTINI ITALIAN BISTRO 4021 Summit Plaza Dr., 3949797. The American-accented Italian fare at this Ohio-based chain might be a little closer to Bayonne, New Jersey than Florence, but it’s good, featuring a short but diverse selection of hearty pastas, pizzas and Italian-style entrees. Martini’s quality has quickly built a loyal crowd of regulars. $$ p f

LA BODEGA 1604 Bardstown Rd., 456-4955. Nextdoor to the excellent De La Torre’s Spanish restaurant, La Bodega offers diners the city’s most authentic Spanish-style tapas bar, featuring the small bites originally invented in the outdoor cafés of Jerez to provide an edible lid for your glass of Sherry. $$ p f

MELILLO’S 829 E. Market St., 540-9975. Adjacent to the locally owned and operated Felice Vineyards on East Market, Melillo’s offers hearty and delicious home-style Italian-American fare—and you can enjoy it with a glass of vino. $ p f OLD SPAGHETTI FACTORY 235 W. Market St., 5811070. One of the original ventures of a national firm that places its properties in renovated urban buildings, this favorite lights up the historic Levy Brothers’ department store. Bright and noisy, it offers well-made if basic Italian family fare and dishes it out for surprisingly low prices. $$ p THE OLIVE GARDEN 1320 Hurstbourne Pkwy., 3397190. The top property of the Orlando-based Darden chain, Olive Garden now operates more than 500 properties and bills itself as the leading Italian restaurant in the casual dining industry. Hearty pastas of all shapes and sauces, appetizers and combo platters all carry the Italian theme. $$ p PESTO’S ITALIAN RESTAURANT 566 S. Fifth St., 584-0567. Offices for blocks around empty into this bustling Italian eatery for weekday lunches featuring hearty platters of lasagna, zesty salads, red wine and iced tea. On Saturdays, the kitchen switches over to a special Persian menu. $ PORCINI 2730 Frankfort Ave., 894-8686. An expanded dining room and a stylish alfresco patio facing busy Frankfort Ave. make Porcini’s an even more popular destination, a place to see and be seen—and, while you’re at it, enjoy a drink and a decent Italian-American dinner. $$$ p RAY PARRELLA’S ITALIAN CUISINE 2311 Frankfort Ave., 899-5575. Old-fashioned Italian-American family fare is served up with a warm and casual welcome at Ray Parella’s, the latest venture of a family that’s been pleasing locals for a generation. $ f ROCKY’S ITALIAN GRILL 715 W. Riverside Dr., Jeffersonville IN, 282-3844. This longtime Southern Indiana favorite earns its popularity with fine pizzas, a good selection of bottled beers and a select

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PALERMO VIEJO 1359 Bardstown Rd., 456-6461. This eatery’s name may sound Italian, but is, in fact, Louisville’s only source of Argentinian cuisine. Steaks seared on authentic parrillada charcoal grills are a primary draw, but there’s excellent chicken, seafood and much more—plus an affordable selection of intriguing Argentinian wines. $$ p f

BOMBAY INTERNATIONAL MARKET 1591 Bardstown Rd., 473-2077. The familiar landmark building that used to house the Bonnycastle Pharmacy has turned into an ethnic convenience store. Its all-youcan-eat Indian buffet may be the cheapest lunch you’ll find in the neighborhood. $ f e INDIA PALACE 9424 Shelbyville Rd., 394-0490. This longtime local Indian restaurant, originally on Bardstown Road and now housed in this exoticlooking East End building that has housed a string of well-known eateries, is a contender for the city’s top Indian spot. The expansive lunch buffet is well handled and a particularly good value. $$ f KASHMIR INDIAN RESTAURANT 1285 Bardstown Rd., 473-8765. One of the city’s most popular Indian restaurants, Kashmir is casual, neither posh nor expensive, and it produces an extensive menu of seemingly authentic Indian fare. $$ f MAHARAJA INDIAN RESTAURANT 2901 Brownsboro Rd., 721-7200. Back in the late 1980s, an upscale Indian restaurant featuring the cuisine of the Moghuls, India’s royalty, led a short life in this rather exotic looking building. It recently returned to its original roots, with stylish Indian fare prepared in an open kitchen by the same management as suburban Shalimar. $$ p SHALIMAR INDIAN RESTAURANT 1820 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 493-8899. Modern and sleek in appearance, modest in price, this Indian restaurant has become the patriarch of local Indian restaurants. With a substantial lunch buffet

MANOOSH’S 558 S. Fifth St., 584-0004. At lunch time, Manoosh’s is an above average downtown eatery. Come back for dinner, though, and you’ll find owner-chef Manoosh Khosrowshahi turning out an exotic mix of Italian, Greek, Mexican and American dishes, plus Iranian goodies from his native Azerbaijan. Recently renovated, it’s better than ever now. $ f OMAR’S GYRO 969 Baxter Ave., 454-4888. No matter whether you pronounce it “Ghee-ro” or “Gyro,” you won’t be disappointed with the classic Greek sandwich served at Omar’s Gyro, a tiny Highlands shop with a simple, short and inexpensive bill of fare that seldom fails to please. $ f SAFFRON’S 131 W. Market St., 584-7800. Majid Ghavami, a veteran of Casa Grisanti and Vincenzo’s, has elevated this Persian (Iranian) restaurant far beyond a mere ethnic eatery. It transcends its location, a small urban-renewal building, with stylish decor, an intriguingly exotic menu, and a level of careful, professional service worthy of a white-tablecloth dining room. $$$ p SAFIER MEDITERRANEAN DELI 641 S. Fourth St., 585-1125. Another ethnic option joins the increasingly diverse set of lunchtime choices downtown. Yes, you can get standard American fare here, but who’d do that when you can enjoy such appetizing Arabian delights as hummus, mutabal, falafels and the gyros-like (only better) shawarma beef-on-pita sandwich. $ f

DOWNTOWN NEW ORLEANS 1157 S. Second St., 797-5644. The smallish Old Louisville storefront offers a Cajun-style setting that’s worth a visit if you like the spicy goodness of Louisiana-style eats. $ f e FURLONG’S 2350 Frankfort Ave., 896-2610. This Louisiana-style restaurant in Crescent Hill boasts a horse-racing theme that unites the spirits of Kentucky’s and Louisiana’s racing industries. A comfortably cozy spot, it offers a memorable selection of Cajun fare. $$$ f p JOE’S OK BAYOU 9874 Linn Station Rd., 426-1320. Perhaps the best Louisiana-style fare you’ll find in Louisville is served at this East End shoppingcenter eatery. A lengthy menu and fishing-shack decor showcases authentic Cajun and Creole chow cooked by a New Orleans-born chef. $$ p

BAHAMA BREEZE 104 Oxmoor Court, 423-9040. It’s a long way from Oxmoor Center to the Florida


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Keys, but this chain-operated eatery does a good job of bridging the gap, offering a happy beachjoint experience without the ocean view. Bahama Breeze is stylish and upscale, with a good selection of island fare and a great bar. $$ p f e HAVANA RUMBA 4115 Oechsli Ave., 897-1959 This bright little spot in St. Matthews gets Cuban fare right, with hosts Fernando and Christina Martinez providing friendly English-speaking service in an appealing, rather upscale setting, with bountiful servings of Cuban fare as good as I’ve enjoyed in Key West or Miami. Try the ropa vieja, tostones and a medianoche sandwich for a taste of Old Havana. $ p f MAMBO CUBAN CUISINE 5309 Mitscher Ave., 3631160. Authentic island fare and very friendly service (plus live music many evenings) make this goodsize, stylish South End room the city’s place to go when you’re in the mood for Cuban cuisine. $$ p e

BAZO’S FRESH MEXICAN GRILL 323 Wallace Ave., 899-9600. Bazo’s Fresh Mexican Grill (formerly Baja Grill) is an inexpensive, casual spot where you’ll find the best fish tacos this side of San Diego as the highlight of its simple fast-food Mexican fare. $ f DON PABLOS MEXICAN KITCHEN 615 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 425-8780, 940 E. IN 131, Clarksville, IN, 284-1071. Born in North Texas and now based in Atlanta, this 100-property MexicanAmerican chain, offers full bar service and a variety of dishes that range from sizzling fajitas with portabello mushroom, beef or chicken to crisp salads tossed in a fajita shell. $$ p EL CAPORAL 7319 Preston Hwy., 969-9693, 2209 Meadow Dr., 473-7840, 1901 Blankenbaker Pkwy., 515 E. Highway 131, Clarksville, IN, 282-7174.

Louisville’s growing Mexican-American community has fostered a happy trend: excellent, authentic Mexican food. El Caporal bridges the gap between the Latino and Anglo communities. $ p EL MUNDO 2345 Frankfort Ave., 899-9930. This crowded, noisy little Crescent Hill storefront offers creative renditions of Mexican regional specialties that make most diners want to yell “Olé!” The setting may lack the trendy flair of Rick Bayless’s Frontera Grill in Chicago, but the fare mines a similar vein and does so nearly as well. $ p f EL NOPAL 9473 Westport Rd., 327-6551, 11336 Preston Hwy., 961-9851, 10500 Watterson Tr., 2665956. Associated with the same family that runs the smaller El Nopalito, (or “the little cactus”), El Nopal (“the cactus”) offers similar delicious, authentic and inexpensive Mexican fare in somewhat larger and more comfortable surroundings. $ p f

pleasant fast-Mexican-food environment, and affordable prices. $ f EL RODEO MEXICAN RESTAURANT 9070 Dixie Hwy., 995-8722. At El Rodeo, you’ll find a blend of Tex-Mex and other Latin American classics from salty margaritas to sweet sopapillas. $$ EL TARASCO 5425 New Cut Rd., 368-5628, 110 Fairfax Ave., 895-8010. Add El Tarasco to the happy new genre of restaurants run by Latinos and offering authentic Mexican food and atmosphere, but that reach out to Anglos and make it easy to enjoy a South-of-the-Border culinary adventure without compromise. $ p e ERNESTO’S 10602 Shelbyville Rd., 244-8889, 6201 Dutchmans Ln., 893-9297, 7707 Preston Hwy., 962-5380, 700 Riverside Dr., Clarksville, IN, 2800032. One of the first of the more authentic locally-owned Mexican restaurant groups, Ernesto’s remains consistently reliable. From the crispy home-fried chips to filling Mexican main courses and tasty desserts, it’s a worthy destination for good Mexican food and excellent value in an enjoyable atmosphere. $ p f e

EL NOPALITO 4028 Taylorsville Rd., 458-7278, 6300 Bardstown Rd., 231-4249, 2319 Brownsboro Rd., 893-9880. This modest little eatery used to be a Taco Bell, but you’ll never find comidas like this at the Bell! Run by a family from Mexico, it’s truly authentic and delicious. $ p f

FIESTA TIME MEXICAN GRILL 11320 Maple Brook Dr., 425-9144. $ p

EL PARAISO 6201 Preston Hwy., 968-4873. On weekend nights, it’s one of the hottest Latino spots in town, attracting Louisville’s Hispanic community (and Anglos, too) for music and dancing. It’s less frenzied by day, but if you like excellent Mexican food and don’t mind a bargain, it’s well worth making the trip. $ p

JALAPEÑO’S 4430 Dixie Hwy., 448-5678. Jalapeño’s (Louisville’s first outpost of a Lexington-based mini-chain) is owned and operated by folks of Mexican heritage, but its fare and its flair make it comfortable for wary “gringos” in search of a mellow Margarita and mild, familiar Mexican food. $$ p e

EL RESTAURANTE CHIQUITO 624 Cherry St., New Albany, IN,944-2660. $ p

KY TACO 6911 Shepherdsville Rd., 962-8526. Traditional Mexican fare from the Ramirez family. $

EL REY MEXICAN RESTAURANT 2918 Hikes Ln., 454-6520. Although it’s more Mexican-American than hard-core ethnic Mexican, El Rey earns my recommendation for tasty fare, cordial service in a

LA BAMBA 1237 Bardstown Rd., 451-1418. La Bamba boasts of its “burritos as big as your head.” It may be Louisville’s most startling case of an eatery that is more than it appears to be, and that goes

Indian Restaurant Come In and See What’s

NEW! NEW MENU! NEW PATIO! Interior Renovated & Upgraded! LUNCH HOURS: Monday - Friday ✦ 11:30a - 3:00p

Lunch Buffet: Saturday & Sunday ✦ 11:30a - 3:00p DINNER HOURS: Sunday - Thursday ✦ 5:00p - 10:00p Friday & Saturday ✦ 5:00p - 10:30p Take Out & Catering Available 1285 Bardstown Road (Across from Mid-City Mall)

(502) 473-8765

473-2078

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for both quality and quantity. Franchised and fastfoodish, it pleasantly suprises with genuine Mexican fare and Latino flair. $ LA EMBAJADA 7502 Preston Hwy., 964-8775. $ LA HERRADURA 615 Eastern Blvd., Clarksville, IN., 280-8650. Is it possible to enjoy truly authentic tacqueria cuisine when the management speaks mostly Spanish and you speak only English? These friendly folks make it simple: a handy bi-lingual menu and a smiling staff make you feel at home.$ LA MARIMBA 5412 Del Maria Way, 493-0201. $

“The Best Mexican Food & Margaritas in Louisville” Monday-Thursday 11am-10pm Friday 11am-11pm Saturday Noon-11pm Sunday Noon-9pm

LA TAPATIA RESTAURANT 8106 Preston Hwy., 9619153. One of the most authentic ethnic Mexican restaurants in Louisville, this little storefront offers memorable tacos and burritos and more. You might run into a slight language barrier, but don’t be shy—Anglos are welcome here, and the staff is used to working through language differences. $ p LOLITA’S TACOS 4222 Poplar Level Rd., 459-4356. This tiny place may look like a fast-food joint, but the food is about as authentic Mexican as you’ll find. Crisp or soft tacos and burritos the size of paper-towel rolls turn a meal here into a real bargain. $ f LOS AZTECAS 530 W. Main St., 561-8535, 1107 Herr Ln., 426-3994, 9606 Taylorsville Rd., 297-8003, 9207 U.S. Hwy 42, 228-2450. Authentic Mexican cuisine has become a viable option in Louisville, thanks to a growing immigrant community. With fresh bar and blender offerings, creative appetizers and comfortable seating, Los Aztecas is one of the best, with tasty Mexican dishes good enough to lure us back again and again. $ p

CLUB SALSA Friday & Saturday 10:30pm-4am 530 W. Main St. – 2nd Floor Los Aztecas Mexican Restaurant 502.561.8535

LOS INDIOS RESTAURANTE MEXICANO 2743 Charlestown Rd., New Albany, IN, 941-9770, 730 Highlander Point Dr., Floyds Knobs, IN, 923-2929. “Why have Tex-Mex when you can have MexMex?” is asked in fun on the servers’ T-shirts. This eatery is well worth the trip to Southern Indiana for high-quality Mexican dishes. $ p MAMA ROSA 4157 Bardstown Rd., 671-7025, 3061 Breckenridge Ln., 485-1811. Located in a shoppingcenter building that formerly housed another fast-food restaurant, Mama Rosa offers Mexican standards and a few more exotic Peruvian dishes. $pf MAYAN GYPSY 624 E. Market St., 583-3300. It may have evolved from a mobile taco van, but Bruce Ucán’s high-style Yucatan and tropical Mexican cooking shows his creative genius in the kitchen: subtle and complex, sometimes spicy but never fiery, it is fully competitive in quality with the city’s best restaurants. $$$ f

LOS AZTECAS M E X I C A N R ESTAU R A N T www.losaztecasinc.net 4 LOUISVILLE LOCATIONS:

530 W. Main St.

502.561.8535

9207 U.S. Hwy. 42

502.228.2450

9606 Taylorsville Rd.

502.297.8003

1107 Herr Ln.

502.426.3994

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MEXICO TIPICO RESTAURANT 6517 Dixie Hwy., 933-9523. It’s a bit of a trip out to Pleasure Ridge Park for those who don’t live nearby, but this little neighborhood restaurant, one of the city’s longerestablished Mexican spots, offers good and authentic dishes. $ p e PUERTO VALLARTA 4214 Charlestown Rd., New Albany, IN, 945-3588. $$ p QDOBA MEXICAN GRILL 1500 Bardstown Rd., 4543380, 970 Breckinridge Ln., 721-8100, 4059 Summit Plaza Drive, 429-5151, 100 Daventry Ln., 412-6202, 8602 Citadel Way, 493-9606, 4302 Charlestown Rd., New Albany IN, 941-9654. This chain operation boasts five local outlets plus more in Lexington and Frankfort. Fast-foodish in style, Qdoba edges out its competitors on the basis of variety and interesting salsas, plus sizable portions at a price you can afford. $ f RINCON LATINO 2840 Goose Creek Rd., 425-4548. Truly authentic and ridiculously inexpensive fare attracts a largely Spanish-speaking clientele. This little spot offers one of the East End’s most appetizing Mexican options. $

ROSTICERIA LUNA 5213B Preston Hwy., 962-8898. Tiny and cluttered and very friendly, this little spot on Preston looks like another tacqueria (and the tacos, in fact, are very fine), but the specialty, Mexican-style roasted chicken, takes it to another level, juicy and succulent and roasted golden brown. Chicken simply doesn’t get any better than this. $ SANTA FE GRILL 3000 S. Third St., 634-3722. This tiny eatery in a century-old red-brick South End storefront near Churchill Downs never fails to satisfy with genuine Mexican tacos and other simple fare at prices that will leave you plenty of change for an exacta bet at the races. $ TACQUERIA LA MEXICANA 6201 Preston Hwy., 969-4449. The tacos are fine at this tiny storefront, next door to a Latino grocery store. This is seriously ethnic stuff, but Anglos are thoroughly welcome, the staff is bilingual, and they will happily provide a menu with all the English translations written in. $ TEQUILA MEXICAN RESTAURANT 7803 Old Third Street Rd., 368-3591. $

ALAMEDA 1381 Bardstown Rd., 459-6300. After a brief sojourn into Northern Italy, reinvented as Mezzaluna Tuscan Grill, Alameda has returned in the face of what management calls “popular demand.” The familiar Southwestern favorites are back, and so is the casual feel, complete with attractive renovations. $ p f MOE’S SOUTHWEST GRILL 2001 S. Hurstbourne Pkwy., 491-1800, 1001 Breckinridge Ln., 893-6637. “Welcome to Moe’s!” rings the merry shout of staff whenever anyone walks in the door. The food may be more fast-food Mexican-American than authentic South-of-the-Border fare, but it is freshly made from quality ingredients and comes in oversize portions, and that’s not a bad thing. $ ON THE BORDER 10601 Fischer Park Dr., 412-2461. From Dallas-based Brinker International, the food-service chain that also operates Chili’s and the Macaroni Grill, this contemporary spin on traditional favorites offers a range of delights from the Ultimate Fajita to margaritas in a setting that emulates Old Mexico décor. $$ p f TIJUANA FLATS BURRITO CO. 2420 Lime Kiln Ln. , 412-6700. Another entry in the growing niche of “fast casual Tex-Mex” eateries, specializing in burritos made from fresh ingredients while you wait. $$ TUMBLEWEED SOUTHWEST GRILL (19 locations). Tumbleweed, which started as a humble Mexican restaurant in New Albany, eventually came to dominate Louisville’s Tex-Mex niche with colossal margaritas, gigantic burritos and spicy chili con queso. But what started as a sideline, mesquite grilled steaks, chops, and chicken, has become the main draw. These days, diners are more likely to dig into a perfectly grilled steak and baked potato as into a burrito. With its new Southwest focus, large and varied menu and added wine list, “The Weed” still has diners returning in droves. $$ p

ARTISAN’S COFFEE CAFÉ 2415 Lime Kiln Ln., 4120360. In Glenview Plaza off US 42, Artisan’s offers fresh gourmet coffee espresso drinks, upscale teas and baked goods. Bring your portable computer and enjoy WiFi Internet access with your cappuccino. $ e ATOMIC SAUCER 1000 E. Oak St., 637-5399. $ BEAN STREET CAFÉ 2736 Charlestown Rd., New Albany, IN, 944-6262. New Albany’s first gourmet coffee shop, Bean Street, introduced the Sunny


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Side to the joys of serious espresso. Like all good coffee shops, it’s not just an eatery, but a cultural hangout with an IUS flavor. $ f CAFFE CLASSICO 2144 Frankfort Ave., 894-9689. Not just another funky neighborhood coffee shop, Caffe Classico is sleek, modern and very European in style. Outstanding espresso drinks, teas and pastries are bolstered with a short lunch menu including fine panini, and it differs dramatically in mood and personality from many of its competitors. $ f CALIFORNIA’S COFFEE HOUSE 1515 E. Market St., New Albany, IN, 944-3620. $ f CLEO’S COFFEE AND MORE Caesars Indiana Casino, Elizabeth, IN, 888-766-2648. Open 24 hours a day, the coffeeshop at Caesars serves hot and fresh java, breakfast orders, cutting board sandwiches, pastries and a hamburger as big and smile-provoking as a slot-machine payoff. $ COFFEE BEANERY 7900 Shelbyville Rd. (Oxmoor Center), 339-0738. $ COFFEE POT CAFÉ 234 E. Gray St. (Medical Tower South), 584-5282 $ f DAY’S ESPRESSO AND COFFEE BAR 1420 Bardstown Rd., 456-1170, 720 W. Main St., 5844932. Dark and cozy, with an old-fashioned feeling, Day’s Bardstown branch has everything you would expect in a college-neighborhood coffee shop except a college near by. $ f DBL SHOTZ 1315 Spring St., Jeffersonville, IN, 2827000. $ EXPRESSIONS OF YOU 1800A W. Muhammad Ali, 584-6886. $ f e HEINE BROTHERS COFFEE 2714 Frankfort Ave., 899-5551, 1295 Longest Ave., 456-5108, 2200 Bardstown Rd., 515-0380, 118 Chenoweth Ln., 893-5103. Spartan, friendly and affordable, with good coffee roasted on the premises and a short list of pastries, desserts and panini sandwiches, Heine Bros. has earned its outstanding local reputation. $ f e HIGHLAND COFFEE CO. 1140 Bardstown Rd., 4514545, 627 S. Fourth St., 540-9909. Offering two ways to get wired, this cozy neighborhood coffee shop also functions as one of Louisville’s top Internet cafés, where you can enjoy a hot cappuccino while you surf the ‘net in a WiFi hot spot. Funky Seattle-style ambience is a plus. $ f THE HOBKNOBB ROASTING CO. 3700 Paoli Pike, Floyds Knobs, IN, 923-1458. Said to be the Southern Indiana’s first retail source of fresh roasted coffee beans, HobKnobb offers fresh hot coffee, espresso drinks and fresh baked pastries, cakes and cookies. $ f JAVA BREWING COMPANY 2910 Frankfort Ave., 893-6996, 9561B US Hwy 42, 292-2710, 516 W. Main St., 568-6339, 135 S. English Station Rd., 489-5677, Fourth Street Live, 561-2041, 4013 Dutchmans Ln., 895-3115, 2309 Frankfort Ave., 894-8060. Another of Louisville’s many atmospheric coffee houses, this casual neighborhood spot boasts the comfortable ambience of a friendly old-fashioned book shop, with comfortable seating, a good selection of pastries, and quality coffee from Seattle. $ JOE MUGGS 994 Breckenridge Ln. (Books-a-Million), 894-8606, 4300 Towne Center Dr., 426-2252. $ f PERKFECTION 359 Spring St., Jeffersonville, IN, 2180611. $ e

another in the growing cadre of espresso bars in Louisville’s Germantown neighborhood. $

BAKELICIOUS 6915 Southside Dr., 363-9040. The region’s first Asian bakery, offering goodies that Chinese-American families have heretofore had to travel to Chicago to find, Bakelicious offers a bewildering range of baked buns filled with curry meats, hot dogs, omelets, barbecue and custard. $ THE BAKERY 3100 Bardstown Rd., 452-1210. Not just a fine bakery but a place where bakers learn their business, this excellent establishment—like the nearby Winston’s—is part of the culinary program at Sullivan University. A recent renovation adds a touch of European style. The deli option is no more, but you can’t beat the quality breads and pastries offered here to eat in or carry out. $ BREADWORKS 3628 Brownsboro Rd., 893-3200, 2420 Lime Kiln Ln., 326-0300, 2204 Dundee Rd., 452-1510, 11800 Shelbyville Rd., 254-2885. $ DESSERTS BY HELEN 2210 Bardstown Rd., 451-7151, 9209 US Hwy. 42, 228-8959. Helen has enjoyed a local clientele in Prospect for years. Now a second location brings her sweet addition to the Highlands community, with elegant cakes, tempting pies and tortes and designer cookies. $ HEITZMAN TRADITIONAL BAKERY & DELI 9426 Shelbyville Rd., 426-7736, 428 W. Market St., 5842437. The Heitzman family has been baking in the Louisville area since your great-aunt was a girl ordering dinner rolls. Made fresh daily, the pies, cakes, cookies and specialty pastries provide tasty nostalgia for all who visit. $ MAGIC CORNER BAKERY 335 W. Broadway (Camberley Brown Hotel), 583-1234. Pastry Chef Brian Logsdon has opened this gourmet bakery on the hotel’s main floor, offering a variety of artisan breads, pastries and cakes during a fourhour window around midday. $ MY FAVORITE MUFFIN 3934 Taylorsville Rd., 4850518, 9800 Shelbyville Rd., 426-9645. All the muffins are made right in the store, including such popular choices as the Cinnamon Crumb and the Turtle Muffin, a double chocolate with caramel and pecans. $ PLEHN’S BAKERY 3940 Shelbyville Rd., 896-4438. A neighborhood institution, this bakery is as busy as it is nostalgic. Enjoy the hometown soda fountain with ice cream while you wait for your hand-decorated birthday cake, breakfast rolls or colorful cookies to be boxed. $ RAINBOW BLOSSOM BAKERY 311 Wallace Ave., 897-3648. Organic and vegan pastries, rolls, breads and cookies, all in the tradition of freshness, and healthiness. $ SWEET SURRENDER 1416 Bardstown Rd., 458-6363. Some of the city’s best desserts and pastries are available at this first-rate pastry shop. Debbie Richter-Keller, featured in Southern Living magazine among other local and regional publications, has a way with Belgian chocolate that every sweet tooth should experience. $ THE SWEET TOOTH 3110 Frankfort Ave., 895-4554. You’ll find an enticing collection of cakes, pies and other homemade goodies, plus excellent coffee and a selection of loose-leaf teas, in the lavendertinted quarters of this cozy little spot between Crescent Hill and St. Matthews. $

STARBUCKS COFFEE (15 locations) $ f SUNERGOS COFFEE & MICRO-ROASTERY 2122 S. Preston St., 634-1243. Matthew Huested and Brian Miller used to roast their own coffee beans as a hobby. Their friends said they did it so well, they should turn pro—the result is Sunergos Coffee,

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Come out to any of our three convenient locations and experience one of Louisvilleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s finest dining traditions with our relaxing atmosphere, delectable foods and incredible list of fine wines.

1321 Bardstown Rd. Louisville, KY 40204 456 .1702 300 N. Hurstbourne Pkwy. Louisville, KY 40227 426. 0627 614 W. Main St. Louisville, KY 40202 582.1995 Catering and banquet rooms are available at our Bardstown Road and Downtown locations.

www.bristolbarandgrille.com

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DOWNTOWN > DOWNTOWN

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If it ain’t messy, it ain’t good!

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So the next time you’re craving a nice Bar-B-Q dinner, just bring your appetite and head to the Big Red Barn known as Petterson’s We Deliver! Open seven days a week Monday - Saturday 11am - 9pm Sunday 11am - 8pm 812-248-9063 7705 Highway 311 Sellersburg, IN

15 > INDIANA > CLARKSVILLE

Mouth Watering Ribs Pulled Chicken & Pork Daily Lunch Specials

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PATIO DINING AVAILABLE FULL-SERVICE BAR LIVE MUSIC Thursday – Saturday

CATERING AVAILABLE DAILY LUNCH ESPECIALS

PARTY ROOM AVAILABLE

DINE IN ONLY

at our Dutchmans Lane location only Call 261-8232 for information.

MONDAY Speedy Gonzalez. . . . . . . . . . 4.25 Beef enchilada, beef taco, with mexican rice or refried beans. Chicken Taquitos . . . . . . . . . 4.99 Laredo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.99 Bean burrito covered with cheese dip sauce, served with mexican rice and beans. Nachos Supremos. . . . . . . . . 5.50

TUESDAY Numero Dos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.25 Beef burrito, mexican rice and refried beans. Order of Tacos . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.25 Chicken or Beef (Three) Matamoros. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.50 Giant flour tortilla taco shell stuffed with seasoned chicken, lettuce, anejo cheese and sour cream, served with mexican rice and refried beans. Juarez. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.25 Crispy corn tortilla, refried beans, chicken, lettuce, anejo cheese and mexican cream. Served with rice.

WEDNESDAY Numero Tres . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.25 Cheese enchilada, bean burrito, and mexican rice. Tijuana . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.50 Two beef enchiladas served with rice or beans.

El Paso . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.99 Two giant chicken flautas topped with lettuce, cheese and mexican cream. Served with rice. Piedras Negras. . . . . . . . . . . . 5.25 Mashed potato burrito covered with cheese and delicious onion/tomato sauce, served with rice and beans.

THURSDAY Numero Uno . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.25 Taco, chile relleno, guacamole salad and beans. Eagle Pass . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.75 One beef burrito and One beef taco. Calexico. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.75 Chicken mini chimichanga topped with cheese dip sauce, served with lettuce, sour cream and mexican rice. Myquesadilla. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.25 Large flour tortilla quesadilla-style stuffed with cheese and chicken served with lettuce, sour cream, cheese and pico de gall.

FRIDAY Crazy Taco . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.75 Burrito Supremo. . . . . . . . . . 4.75 Beef burrito enchilada style with sour cream, lettuce, cheese and tomato. Rio Grande . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.75 Chile poblano relleno with chihuahua cheese served with mexican rice and refried beans. Reynosa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.50 Two chicken enchiladas served with lettuce, sour cream, cheese, and mexican rice.

mexican buffet Preston Hwy. – MON.- SUN. 11am-2pm Jeffersonville – MON.- FRI. 11am-2pm Look for our discount coupons in Valpak®.

FOUR LOUISVILLE AREA LOCATIONS:

7707 Preston Hwy. MONDAY - SUNDAY

11:00am - 10:30pm

962-5380 10602 Shelbyville Rd. MONDAY - SUNDAY

11:00am - 10:30pm

244-8889 6201 Dutchmans Ln. MONDAY - SUNDAY

11:00am - 10:30pm

893-9297 700 W. Riverside Dr. Ste. B (Jeffersonville, IN) MONDAY - SUNDAY

11:00am - 10:30pm

280-0032 LATINO DANCE NIGHTS (21 and over only please) FRI. & SAT. 11pm-4am Prices subject to change.


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HARDROCK.COM

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Anti-established in 1971 in London, Hard Rock Cafe has been serving up great tunes and even better tasting food for millions of rockers around the world. And we donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t intend to stop anytime soon.

LOUISVILLE

LOCATED AT 4TH STREET LIVE

PHONE: 502-568-2202

l

424 SOUTH 4TH ST.


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