Restaurants of Louisville

Sabah Drabu

4 mins read

Jun 03, 2024


The Hottest Restaurants of Louisville

Do you ever wonder if there’s one place where you can taste food from around the globe? If you have, and even if you haven’t, you’ll be happy to know that you can have almost every cuisine in Louisville.

Yes, that’s correct! People know Louisville for its history, sports culture, and bourbon, but it surely wouldn’t keep its visitors and locals hungry, right? The chain of Louisville restaurants is packed tight with swanky hotel hotspots to star chefs and James Beard Award nominees.

In this blog post, we will list the most popular restaurants in Louisville that will delight your taste buds and keep you coming back for more. Let’s explore!

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Jack Fry’s

The list of best restaurants in Louisville starts with Jack Fry’s, one of Louisville’s oldest and most famous restaurants. Jack and Flossie Fry opened this establishment in 1933, and have been a local favorite ever since.

The restaurant is known for its historical charm, with walls lined with old news clippings and photos of Louisville residents. This decor adds to its nostalgic vibe, making it a popular choice for romantic dinners and special occasions.

Jack Fry’s specializes in American and spicy food. Its recommended dishes are pork chops, spicy fried oysters, and lamb chops. Jack Fry’s also has some of the best craft cocktails in town. You must try their Bluegrass Mule and a classic Old Fashioned. 


Drive to the Highlands neighborhood for a German-inspired bed and breakfast. Gralehaus & Holy Grale serves espresso all day. This place also has a variety of breakfast and lunch options, “hausmade” drinks, and a selection of wines and beers. 

After ordering, you can step outside to the Gralegarten, an outdoor space designed like a German Biergarten. It features string lights, stained glass structures, and lots of greenery.

Proof on Main

Proof on Main is located in the 21C Museum Hotel. This restaurant offers an above-average dining experience in an art-filled environment decorated with contemporary art from the hotel’s exhibits.

Their standout dishes include charred octopus with bagna cauda, lime, and toast. Try the Kentucky Stack Cake, made with lemon buttercream, almond, and buttermilk whip for dessert.

The drinks menu is famous for its bourbon-based cocktails. One favorite is the No Spectators, featuring Old Forester 86 bourbon, sfumato, grapefruit rosemary cordial, lemon juice, and a spritz of peaty scotch.

Lobby Bar & Grill at The Brown Hotel

The Brown Hotel is a true Louisville landmark. It is located downtown and famous for its signature hot brown dish. Created in 1926, this iconic dish features roasted turkey breast, toast points, and Mornay sauce, all topped with pecorino Romano cheese and baked to golden perfection. It’s finished off with crispy bacon and fresh tomatoes.

Under the expertise of Chef Dustin Willett, the Brown Hotel offers the legendary hot brown and mouth-watering slices of its decadent Derby Pie. This rich dessert tastes best when paired with a handcrafted cocktail or a bourbon flight.

Sake Blue

Sake Blue Japanese Bistro, located near Jeffersontown, is a top choice in Louisville for sushi, hibachi, and various Japanese dishes. This family-owned, award-winning restaurant is known for its fresh sushi and impressive menu.

Sake Blue has a modern look, a dark interior, and soft orange lighting. Its large tables and cozy seating make it perfect for group gatherings and romantic dinners.

The menu offers a wide selection of sushi, sashimi, and vegetarian appetizers. If you’re unsure what to pick, try the sushi nigiri platter, rainbow roll, or green goddess roll. The teriyaki chicken or vegetable udon are great options for those who prefer cooked dishes.

Noche Mexican BBQ

Noche Mexican BBQ is one of the best restaurants in Louisville for many reasons. One is that this restaurant celebrates Latin American culture with its food, art, and architecture.  

Inside, you’ll find a large La Catrina mural and an open kitchen where the pastor’s pulpit used to be.  

The vaulted ceilings and stained glass windows add to the atmosphere. Visit in the mid-afternoon to enjoy the sunlight streaming through the windows. Noche Mexican BBQ serves lunch and dinner; you can enjoy it in their outdoor seating arrangement.  

Buck’s Restaurant

Located in the historic Mayflower building, Buck’s Restaurant has been a popular spot in the list of Louisville restaurants since 1992. What makes this place exceptional? You’ll get to dine while listening to music from a singer and pianist.

As part of the Urban Bourbon Trail, Buck’s offers over 50 types of bourbon and several Kentucky-themed bourbon cocktails. Manager Karen Shane recommends the New York strip steak served with crab legs and shrimp.

The best dessert on the menu is their signature mocha dacquoise, made with layers of toasted almond meringue, mocha buttercream, rum Chantilly, powdered sugar, and chocolate drizzle.

Grassa Gramma

If you want the best Italian flavors in Louisville, you should visit Grassa Gramma without a second thought. This eatery is one of the best Louisville restaurants that will make your mouth say Che bontà as soon as you eat the first bite of anything on their menu.

The main dining room resembles an Italian courtyard, with stone archways, a four-tiered fountain, and faux storefronts. The menu offers a selection of wines, cocktails, pastas, pizzas, and savory entrees.


Swizzle’s menu boasts prime steaks, sustainable seafood, fresh local produce, and unique cocktails, making this place one of the best restaurants in Louisville.

Scott Shoenberger, the Al J. Schneider Company president and CEO, shares that Swizzle was created to honor a former Louisville supper club with the same name.

This retro-style restaurant at the top of the Galt House Hotel features two revolving sections, giving diners breathtaking views of the city and the Ohio River.

For the taste of ethnic food in Derby City, try the 1910 Old Fashioned. This cocktail is crafted with 1910 Old Forester whiskey and served in a smoke-filled box, paying tribute to the fire that struck the Old Forester distillery in 1910.


Exploring Louisville restaurants will let you discover the Louisville culture on a deeper level. These eateries serve great food and have an atmosphere that will make dining there your new favorite activity.  

If you want a restaurant-like experience inside your home, you can hire a personal chef in Louisville from CookinGenie. CookinGenie chefs are experts in cooking meals that align with your tastes and preferences. Their menus have options for cuisines from all around the world.  

All these options in Lexington will let you travel the world without renewing your passport. 

Sabah Drabu

Co-Founder & CEO

Sabah Drabu is a foodie, engineer, and the Co-founder & CEO of CookinGenie. She created the platform in 2019 to connect local chefs with at-home diners, making hiring personal chefs more accessible. Sabah's idea has evolved into a service people use for parties, vacation rentals, and family gatherings.

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