Category Archives: New and noteworthy

Reviews and scouting reports on recent arrivals in the city’s dining scene.

ROC rocks Italian food and drink

Some of Louisville’s favorite restaurants have their roots in other cities. Consider Selena’s, for instance, which came up from Tampa almost a decade ago. Or Jeff Ruby’s, which added Louisville to its thriving Cincinnati metro operation; or even Vincenzo’s, which can trace its roots to the Hill in St. Louis.

Now let’s put our hands together for ROC, an elegant eatery that owners Rocco and Stacy Cadolini pretty much loaded on a moving truck in Manhattan’s Tribeca and unpacked in Louisville’s Highlands last month. Continue reading ROC rocks Italian food and drink

Street food in the South End: Á-Châu

Who doesn’t love street food? I sure do! Give me a corn dog, or maybe a big slice of New York City pizza that I can fold over and carry down the street, and I’m a happy boy.

So naturally I was delighted to discover a recent South End arrival, Á-Châu, which bears the magical words “Vietnamese Street Food” in big letters over the front door. Continue reading Street food in the South End: Á-Châu

Fork & Barrel’s warm vibe surrounds fine, pricey fare

When a restaurant launches in the springtime in Louisville, the owner invariably faces a difficult decision: Rush to open the doors before Derby season? Or take it easy and get all your culinary ducks in a row before opening up more gently in the post-Derby calm?

The issues involved in this decision are not trivial. Opening in time for Derby may pay off, but it poses challenges, too. If things go poorly, the train wreck happens in front of a critical audience.

So, props to Fork & Barrel’s owners, Chef Geoffrey Heyde and his wife, Emily, who risked opening on busy Frankfort Avenue just a few weeks before the race, following a quick but stylish remake of the space that had long housed Basa Modern Vietnamese. Continue reading Fork & Barrel’s warm vibe surrounds fine, pricey fare

Mirin, Hai!

Did you ever wait in line at Rumplings? I sure did. And I hated it when that little ramen-and-dumpling place just off Bardstown Road went away after only seven months.

So here’s good news: Griffin Paulin, one of the minds behind the original Rumplings team has opened Mirin, a new ramen-and-more shop on Frankfort Avenue in Clifton. Continue reading Mirin, Hai!

When we say “Ciao” to Ciao, we mean hello and welcome

Ciao!” Pronounce it “chow,” or something close to that, which makes it an ironically cheeky name for a friendly eatery. There’s ambiguity in this Italian greeting, though: Much like “Aloha” or “Shalom” or maybe even “Good Day,” you can use it to say hello, and you can also use it to say goodbye.

So let’s say “Ciao,” meaning “howdy,” to Ciao Ristorante, the warm and inviting establishment that has finally filled the long-vacant space where the beloved Baxter Station sadly said its “Ciao” as farewell in the summer of 2013. Continue reading When we say “Ciao” to Ciao, we mean hello and welcome