The 15 Essential Louisville Restaurants


1.A�The Mayan Cafe

a�?Authentic Mayan Cuisine with local, seasonal ingredientsa�? is the way the Mayan CafA� humbly describes its fare. They proudly serve the essential ingredients and flavors of Mayan cooking – dishes rich with smoked chilies, pumpkins seeds, lime, oil infusions & roasted meats sourced exclusively from local farms.

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The menu offers an array of colorful dishes ranging from Scallop Ceviche, to slow-roasted pork to pumpkin seed dip to the ever-exotic cheeseburger.

2. A�Volare Ristoranate

“A fine-dining restaurant serving modern Italian cuisine with Southern hospitality.” What’s not to love? Of course, Volare features a beautiful wine list and an impressive and sophisticated atmosphere.

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The presentation of Volare’s dishes is beautiful and immaculate – especially its desserts!


This place has received national attention on the Cooking Channel. It’s big time. This is the gastropub that started it all – if you want french fries fried in duck fat, you got it. Or how ’bout an Elk burger with brie?

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Hammerheads is known for its unconventional burgers featured on their menu, with everything from duck, elk, venison and the more standard Angus beef. The ribs are phenomenal as well, BBQ lamb ribs are on the menu.

4.A�Holy Grale

Beer connoisseurs rejoice. The menu, beer and food alike, changes seasonally. Youa��ll find some of the most unusual and exciting beers in Louisville within these walls a�� 26 of them are on tap in addition to the bottles the Grale has to offer.


Many of the items on the menu are provided by local farms. Sophisticated, The Holy Grale serves Southern-inspired pub food to die for – like the pretzel bread with beer cheese. The restaurant is located inside an old church, which creates a unique ambiance.

5.A�El Mundo

El Mundo has been serving made-from-scratch Mexican food for the last two decades. The menu is creative, delicious and made from some of the freshest ingredients – there’s a reason Louisville keeps coming back (the award-winning margaritas don’t hurt, either).

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This place serves one of the best chile rellenos in town.

6.A�Jack Fry’s

The cool, 1920s speakeasy ambiance complements the experience of elegant Southern cooking. Sophisticated but not stuffy, the menu offers what many would call the best filet in town. Try the shrimp and grits, trust us.

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The menu serves traditional American fare and is known for its immaculate presentation just as much as its divine and flavorful offerings.


7.A�Mussel and Burger Bar

No longer will a Kraft single-serving slice of cheese slapped on an over-cooked patty suffice as a “burger.” Mussel and Burger Bar serves gourmet, adventurous burger creations stacked to the sky, from the Frita Cubana burger to the Mediterranean burger. A�Of course, truffle fries are available and their appetizers are as tantalizing as their burgers.

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8.A�Doc Crow’s

Aside from traditional Southern flare, bourbon is the star of the show here – as it very well should be. Of course, this makes the food no less delicious.

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It’s laid-back, yet sophisticated, and will serve you some of the most respectable BBQ to have ever crossed your lips. Come for the food, stay for the bourbon.

9.A�Mojito’s Tapas Restaurant

Mojito’s features tapas-style dining a�� meaning that the best way to do it is to order a pitcher of sangria and many small dishes to share. The cuisine is inspired by Spanish and Latin American tradition so ita��s exotic without being a�?tooa�? exotic.


Traditional Spanish dishes such as paella are on the menu, so order some tapas and make an evening of it.


Hammerhead’s sister restaurant. Kind of the same gig, except with more exotic meats. Ever heard of a wagyu? No? Well, they’ll cook one to temperature and throw it on a bun, if you ever want to find out. (it’s a “Japanese cow,” apparently). Kangaroo burgers, lamb burger, bison burgers, elk burgers, duck burgers, salmon burgers…

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The appetizers are unique, featuring offerings such as beef tartare and bone marrow.


a�?A locally grown restaurant.a�? New American food a�� meaning barbecue, burgoo, fried okra, Buttermilk Fried Chicken, Pork Confita�� and it goes on like this. Order a bourbon flight and youa��re pretty much an honorary Southerner.

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Harvest is one of Louisville’s leading farm-to-table, locally sourced restaurants.



Seviche is a white-tablecloth kind of joint in the Highlands. The menu is Latin-inspired, hardly-Americanized, and changes seasonally. This is a great place for a candlelight-yet-still-somewhat-casual dinner.

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13.A�Proof On Main

Located in the acclaimed 21c Museum Hotel, the building is such an experience in itself it may take you a while to remember you came for dinner. The experience can be made as casual or swanky as you’d like it to be. The menu offers sophisticated, Southern-inspired fare and exquisite cocktails.

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14.A�Havana Rumba

Havana Rumba serves dishes from ingredients prepared fresh daily. It is a trip to the Caribbean in your own backyard. Join them for refreshing cocktails, delicious Cuban Cuisine, a nice afternoon on the patio and Latin sounds with their Live music.

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