Louisville Originals

A long time ago, my dad’s cousin and husband came for a visit.  They wanted to know what restaurants in Louisville and Kentucky were exclusive to our area.  At the time, the web site for Louisville Originals didn’t exist but now it does with all the answers.

We pride ourselves in Louisville with the tagline Keep Louisville Weird.  The variety of ways to partake in cuisine is rich as it is with its citizens like Diane Sawyer, Muhammad Ali, Colonel Harland Sanders, Jennifer Lawrence and so many more.

If you are coming for the Kentucky Derby or any other time, or you live here and just haven’t gone exploring yet, this a great list to keep it local and show the pride we all share.

From year to year, this list does change with openings and closings, so please make sure you go to the web sites of each or the Louisville Originals web site to see what is current.


August Moon

2269 Lexington Rd.
Louisville, KY 40204


Bistro 301

301 West Market St
Louisville, KY 40203


Bistro Le Relais

2817 Taylorsville Road
Louisville, KY 40205


Bluegrass Brewing Company – Arena

300 W. Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202

Bluegrass Brewing Company – St. Matthews

3929 Shelbyville Rd.
Louisville, KY 40207

Bluegrass Brewing Company – Theater Sq.

660 S. 4th Street, #2 Theater Square
Louisville, KY 40202


Bristol Bar & Grille – Downtown

614 W. Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202

Bristol Bar & Grille – Highlands

1321 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40204

Bristol Bar & Grille – Hurstbourne

300 N. Hurstbourne Pkwy
Louisville, KY 40222

Bristol Bar & Grille – Jeffersonville

700 West Riverside Drive
Jeffersonville, IN 47130

Bristol Bar & Grille – Prospect

6051 Timber Ridge Drive
Prospect, KY 40059


Buck’s Restaurant

425 W. Ormsby
Louisville, KY 40208


Cafe Lou Lou – Highlands

2216 Dundee Road
Louisville, KY 40205

Cafe Lou Lou – St. Matthews

106 Sears Avenue
Louisville, KY 40207


Come Back Inn

909 Swan Street
Louisville, KY 40204



983 Goss Avenue
Louisville, KY 40217

Hiko-a-mon – Muhammad Ali

416 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd. Suite 100
Louisville, KY 40202

Hiko-a-mon – Westport

Westport Village, 1115 Herr Lane, Suite 130
Louisville, KY 40222


Lilly’s Bistro

1147 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40205


Mayan Cafe

813 East Market Street
Louisville, KY 40206


Meridian Cafe

112 Meridian Ave
Louisville, KY 40207

Napa River Grill

1211 Herr Lane – Westport Village
Louisville, KY 40222


North End Cafe – Crescent Hill

1722 Frankfort Ave
Louisville, KY 40206

North End Cafe – Highlands

2116 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40205


Palermo Viejo Authentic Argentine Restaurant

1359 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40204

RIVUE Restaurant & Lounge

140 N. Fourth St.
Louisville, KY 40202


Sweet Surrender Dessert Cafe

1804 Frankfort Avenue
Louisville, KY 40206


The Irish Rover

2319 Frankfort Ave
Louisville, KY 40206


Uptown Cafe

1624 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40205



150 S. Fifth Street
Louisville, KY 40202


Winston’s Restaurant

3101 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40206



Fast Vegetarian Asian Cuisine at Heart and Soy

Inexpensive, fast, vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free food isn’t easy to find, but you can find it here at Heart & Soul. Traditional Asian cuisine is served and available for carry-out. This is a great place to find a healthy meal without having to modify items on the menu to make it some kind of vegetarian compromise.

Roots is located right next door if you’d like a sit-down, table service vegetarian/vegan alternative.

 Drink Your Health: A Living Food Café at Life Bar

Life Bar is a smoothie and juice cafe that serves you everything your body needs in a cup! Healthy foods can taste a little suspect, but Life Bar manages to make their options quite tasty.

Everything is organic including smoothies, tonics and superfoods. That includes education on living a healthy life style. They provide a comfortable atmosphere for people who want to venture into taking a more active role in their personal health and well being. Take that first step into getting healthy and stop into Life Bar.

 Authentic & Flavorful Mayan Cuisine at Mayan Cafe

The Mayan Cafe is a cozy and romantic restaurant serving the finest of Latin American cuisine. They proudly serve the essential ingredients and flavors of Mayan cooking – dishes rich with smoked chilies, pumpkins seeds, lime, oil infusions & roasted meats.

Mayan Cafe sources their meat exclusively from local farms and use as much sustainably-grown local produce & cheese as is seasonally available. Open for lunch and reopened again at dinner, the menu boasts a colorful array of dishes from Huevos Motulenos and Lima Beans (a must order dish), to Empanadas and Rabbit. The drink menu also offers plenty of options that will pair well with your meal. The Mayan Cafe is a dinner experience that is sure to impress.

 Healthy, Wholesome Food Made Simple at North End Cafe

Located on Historic Frankfort Avenue in two renovated shotgun style houses, the North End Cafe offers a unique setting for any occasion. Their decor blends historic architectural elements of the original design with modern accents. They also feature a collection of artwork from Louisville’s up and coming artists.

The menu highlights traditional items made with a health conscious approach using the freshest seasonal ingredients available. Wooden beams, exposed brick, and giant ceilings make a North End Cafe visit a cozy yet unique experience.

Chinese and Vegetarian Restaurant at Zen Garden

A vegetarian restaurant even meat-eaters can enjoy. The menu offers vegan and vegetarian interpretations of classic Asian-inspired dishes. Soups of all varieties, from Vietnamese Rice Soup to Udon Noodle Soup. If you’ve ever been a fan of Orange Chicken, the Orange Tofu isn’t too far off – the tofu is fried to crispy perfection with a creamy interior.

Zen Garden is a favorite of many vegetarians in the city.

Unique Dessert Experience, Finest Ingredients at Sweet Surrender Dessert Cafe

Sweet Surrender is an award-winning dessert cafe renowned for its decadent desserts. It’s the perfect spot for those seeking a unique dessert experience. Open late, the cafe provides a warm and inviting atmosphere for anyone desiring dessert after dinner and away from the house.

All of the desserts at Sweet Surrender are made from scratch on the premises, using only the finest of ingredients! The pastry chefs at Sweet Surrender are constantly creating new desserts and adding new favorites to the menu of classic desserts that have made Sweet Surrender such a popular dessert destination for more than 20 years.

 Authentic South Indian Cuisine at Dakshin South Indian Restaurant

More than your typical Indian restaurant. North Indian Fare (think mattar paneer), South Indian (idli, dosa) in addition to Indo-Chinese and Indian street food. All are equally delicious and uncompromisingly authentic. The best Indian food in Louisville, possibly even the United States.

The menu is clearly labeled with regard to which dishes are vegetarian and vegan.

 Ethiopian Dining Downtown at Abyssina

Ethiopian dining is characterized by the breaking of “injera” bread and sharing food from a common plate. Come to experience the distinctive and unique spices used in the preparation of Ethiopian food. The staff is happy to help you navigate the unfamiliar territory of Ethiopian cuisine to guide you to something you can enjoy with the right amount of spice.

The traditional way of eating Ethiopian food is with your hands, by tearing off a piece of “injera” bread to grab a mouthful of your dish.

 Mediterranean and Ethiopian Bar & Grill at Addis Bar and Grill

A family-owned eatery in the heart of downtown. Portions are generous, dishes are flavorful, the bar is full. Kabobs, grape leaves, injera, and more. Plenty of vegetarian and vegan options are available on the menu.

The atmosphere is nothing fancy – you order at the counter and are given plastic utensils. The no-frills ambiance is a testament to the quality of the food that people will line up for in spite of it.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s