Category Archives: Commentary

Robin Garr’s musings about food and restaurant matters that don’t fit neatly into the “review” category.

Martin’s lands in old Lynn’s with decent ‘cue, no ugly lamps

Five and one-half years and about 500 rumors later, the long-vacant space that long had housed Louisville’s Lynn’s Paradise Cafe is occupied again. Martin’s Bar-B-Que, a small Nashville-based barbecue chain, re-opened the Barrett Avenue A-frame in late August as its eighth property.

Lynn’s, which had enjoyed a 21-year run either beloved or mocked for its wacky decor and oversize Southern-style dishes, closed abruptly on a Friday night in January 2013. Continue reading Martin’s lands in old Lynn’s with decent ‘cue, no ugly lamps

Tacos surpass pizza as Taco City and Taco Choza arrive

Some time during recent months, pushed by the arrival of the excellent taquerias Taco City in the Highlands and Taco Choza in St. Matthews, the metro area quietly, without any publicity, achieved full taco.

What’s that, you ask? Simple. The numbers are a little vague, but by my best count, hungry Louisvillians now have at least 65 locally owned, independent places to buy tacos, surpassing the roughly 60-plus local pizzerias.

Given all the cranky jokes about this being a city with a pizzeria on every corner, this is no small achievement. Continue reading Tacos surpass pizza as Taco City and Taco Choza arrive

Meet the new Pine Room, something like the old Pine Room

Spring was in the air on the morning of March 10, 1977, when the Harrods Creek Volunteer Fire Department rolled out to an alarm at the old Pine Room restaurant on Upper River Road. A fire that began in the beloved restaurant’s kitchen quickly involved the rest of the building.

Before fire fighters could contain it, the building was gutted by fire, smoke and water. The restaurant, a local landmark since the 1940s, closed forever. In its heyday it had been a popular destination, known for its friendly saloon atmosphere, comfort food, and lounge pianist named Mable who kept a candle burning atop her grand piano.

Now, 40-some years later, the Pine Room is back, or something a lot like it, anyway. Continue reading Meet the new Pine Room, something like the old Pine Room

Free-range chicken adds value at The Eagle

The Eagle landed in Louisville two years ago this month, fourth shop in a Cincinnati-based mini-chain. I have to confess that I didn’t pay much attention at first. But then I found out that The Eagle isn’t just another Highlands bar. Its fried chicken is also a big thing. It’s not your industrially fried chicken, either. It is, according to the firm’s website, “cage free, free roaming, all natural chicken.”

This is a big deal to me. I’d much rather enjoy cage-free birds if I can. Continue reading Free-range chicken adds value at The Eagle