Louisville is gaining a reputation as a foodie city. Living in nearby Lexington, with a daughter that lives in Louisville, means I am in this waterfront city often. The restaurant scene here ranges from high-end to ethnic to local favorites. And the local favorites are where I try and dine in any city. Of the many restaurants in Louisville that I’ve tried, these are some of my favorites.
A thriving city, Louisville is both Southern and Midwestern. The downtown area is on the banks of the Ohio River and you’ll find a beautiful, modern waterfront park, the Belle of Louisville Riverboat, and the Big Four bridge. Downtown Louisville has an impressive and diverse selection of museums on Museum Row including the Frazier Museum and the Louisville Slugger Museum. This is the hometown of Muhammad Ali and a visit to The Muhammad Ali Center is a great way to learn about the boxing champion and cultural icon.
1) Guaca Mole
Guaca Mole is my favorite restaurant in Louisville. It’s located on the east end of Louisville away from downtown making it a bit of a destination but well worth it.
It’s Mexican cuisine but with a a sophisticated twist. The Chips & Homemade Salsa appetizer includes homemade tortilla chips and three different salsas each with a unique flavor profile. You’ll find traditional Mexican dishes including tacos, sopes, ceviches, enchiladas, and burritos. The short ribs enfirjoladas is one of my favorite dishes and my mouth is watering a little bit just thinking about it.
The drink menu at Guaca Mole includes margaritas, sangria, beer, wine and more. The Three Amigos Happy Hour is Monday – Thursday from 3pm – 7pm and features $3 sangria, margaritas, and beers. Go for happy hour and stay for dinner!
Guaca Mole – 9921 Ormsby Station Rd, Louisville, KY 40223 / 502-365-4822
2) The Post
The Post is one of our families go-to restaurants in Louisville. Located in the Germantown neighborhood, the building used to be a VFW Post and that’s where this pizza place got its name. It’s now a modern space with a cool vibe and amazing pizza.
The Post New York-style pizza can be ordered by the pie or the slice. They feature a variety of combinations including the victory garden, a vegetarian pie with nine veggies, to classic pepperoni. Be sure and ask about the monthly and daily features. You can also get calzones, grilled subs, and salads. Make sure to start with my favorite, the pesto bread, and a cold beer.
The Post Louisville – 1045 Goss Ave, Louisville, KY 40217 / 502-635-2020
3) The Roc
The Roc is an Italian restaurant in Louisville located in the heart of the bustling Highlands neighborhood on Bardstown Road. The menu at The Roc is curated by two chefs from Puglia so this is real deal Italian cooking.
Featuring Southern Italian dishes such as fried calamari, grilled octopus, fresh burrata, fresh seafood and pastas. Meat lovers will also find an extensive list of dishes on the secondi menu that will please any carnivore. I especially enjoyed the pappardelle with shrimp and a lovely green-tinged pistachio sauce. Make sure to leave room for dessert. The strawberry panna cotta with stracciatella ice cream was out of this world.
The Roc – 1327 Bardstown Rd, Louisville, KY 40204 / 502-459-7878
4) Con Huevos!
With several locations around Louisville, Con Huevos! is a great place to get breakfast, lunch, or breakfast for lunch. Their menu includes enchiladas with eggs and a choice of chicken tinga or carnitas. You will also find breakfast sandwiches served on soft brioche, huevos rancheros, omelets, and one, of my favorites, chilaquiles.
If you are looking for something lighter (and healthier) try avocado toast. For those with a sweet tooth, Con Huevos! has got you covered with pancakes, french toast, or churros. Lunch includes street tacos, quesadillas, sopes, or burritos. Wash it all down with coffee, or one of their Mexican inspired cocktails.
Con Huevos! – Various Locations
5) The Comfy Cow
The Comfy Cow offers crazy good ice cream at their five locations across Louisville. In business since 2009, Go into one of their ice cream shops and you’ll find handcrafted ice cream in a variety of inventive flavors. Signature flavors include Bourbon Ball, Brown Butter Peanut Brittle, and Cake Batter Up. If traditional ice cream flavors are your jam, no worries. The Comfy Cow has you covered with vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, and more.
Head into The Comfy Cow for some of the best ice cream in Louisville!
The Comfy Cow – Various Locations
6) Taco Luchador Taqueria
Looking for a quick place to quench your hankering for Mexican food in Louisville? Look no further than Taco Luchador. With four locations across Louisville, the best tacos in the city are never far away.
The original location is located a couple of blocks from my daughter’s house so this is a frequent spot for us to eat at when in Louisville. The tacos are delicious and offer a bit more pizzazz than a traditional taco. Taco Luchador’s menu features nine different tacos and I particularly love the carnitas, Baja fish, and veggie tacos. You’ll also find a long list of tortas on the menu as well as starters and sides include elote corn, fried plantains, and some of my favorite sweet potato fries.
Taco Luchador is one of the best restaurants in Louisville for delicious, quick, and affordable eats! They also feature colorful patio dining if you are looking for restaurants with patios in Louisville.
Taco Luchador – Various Locations
7) LouVino Restaurant and Wine Bar
Another local restaurant in Louisville with multiple locations, including some in neighboring Indiana and Ohio, is Louvino. The owners of Louvino started their restaurant after realizing there wasn’t a wine bar in Louisville. Their menu features over 60 wines available by the glass or in wine flights. You’ll also find bourbons, craft beer, and cocktails on the menu to meet everyone’s drink preferences.
The menu is full of seasonal small plates meant to be shared. With an emphasis on Southern flavors, and each location has its own menu. I think this style of dining is a great way to share and sample different dishes. But if sharing isn’t your thing you’ll find large plates too. A trip to Louvino is a great option for a girls night out, date night, or any gathering!
Louvino – Various Locations
8) Mussel & Burger Bar
Mussels and burgers may seem like a strange combination but trust me, it totally works! The owners set out to offer a neighborhood bar or pub feel with a more menu that features gourmet ingredients. Their collection of local awards and appearances on national television shows makes a meal here a must when dining out in Louisville.
Everything at Mussel & Burger Bar is made in house and you’ll have options from foie gras to sliders to start with. If you are looking for mussels you can choose from six options include classic meuniere to blue cheese beer pancetta and Mexican pozole. Want the best burger in Louisville? Peruse the selection of burgers and you’ll find an extensive list of fifteen choices and flavors that span the globe. Looking for vegetarian options in Louisville? Mussel & Burger bar has a vegetarian burger, salads, and other vegetarian options.
Mussel & Burger Bar is a great downtown Louisville restaurant and the have a location in the east end of the city as well.
Mussel & Burger Bar – Two Locations
9) Oskar’s Slider Bar
One of the more unique dining experiences in Louisville is found at Oskar’s Slider Bar. Tucked away in the bottom of a building, is a sparse dining room where sliders are served, inspired by Scandinavian ingredients and flavors. Here even the cocktails are infused with flavors of the Nordic region of Europe.
Service is table side and begins with patrons marking their selections on a paper menu. Sliders are sold a la carte and include cheeseburger, venison sausage, pot roast, and cold sandwiches like shrimp skagen and gravlax. Sides are also available and include a pink beet salad, fries, and a delicious kale salad. All of the food items are $4 or less making this an affordable restaurant in Louisville.
Oskar’s Slider Bar – 3799 Poplar Level Rd, Louisville, KY / 502-395-9010
10 Ollie’s Trolley
I included Ollie’s Trolley on the list of best restaurants in Louisville, Kentucky not because the food is the best, but for the unique experience, it offers. It’s also one of my husband’s favorite places to eat in Louisville.
Housed in a trolley, the restaurant is known for its burgers made with their famous seasoning. The seasoning is a hodgepodge of flavors and is also used to season the french fries. Once upon a time, there were Ollie’s Trolleys dotted throughout the south, but only three remain today. This location in Louisville, one in nearby Cincinnati, and one in Washington D.C. And it’s this rarity and nostalgia that makes a stop at Ollie’s Trolley a must when in Louisville.
Ollie’s Trolley’s menu is simple and includes their famous burgers and fries and a couple of other sandwich options like chicken, fish, or hot dogs. This is quick and cheap eats and expect to walk away with a big, greasy bag of food for next to nothing.
If you are planning on visiting Ollie’s Trolley you need to be aware of a few things. First, they are only open Monday – Friday from 10 am to 4 pm. Second, there will probably be a line. And because the trolley is tiny, there is only room for people to order inside. Just something to keep in mind if the weather is not great. Lastly, there is no indoor or outdoor seating. But this is the kind of food that’s made to be eaten in your car.
Ollie’s Trolley, 978 S 3rd St, Louisville, KY 40203
Restaurants in Louisville
I hope you have enjoyed this list of restaurants in Louisville. There are still so many restaurants I want to try in Lousiville. Have you been to Louisville? Share your favorite restaurants in the comments!
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Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.