All posts by Louisville Hot Bytes

Lynn’s has closed

Lynn’s Paradise Cafe has abruptly closed, in the immediate aftermath of a media uproar about server tip pooling and management policies. Lynn Winter, proprietor of the 21-year Louisville tradition, writes, “We are touched to hear from so many of our loyal customers this morning. We’ll post an additional statement this afternoon. Thank you again for your continued support!” Join the conversation on the LouisvilleHotBytes forum or my Facebook page.

It’s fish fry time!

Yes, we know Louisville is the inland epicenter for fried white fish at any time of year, but consumption ramps up further during Lent, when many Roman Catholic churches and a few Episcopal churches offer festive, fun fish dinners on Fridays.

The fishy fun begins Friday! Check a Catholic church near you, or click the Archdiocese of Louisville website,, which in past years has published a canonical list during Lent.

I’m heading out to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Anchorage (1206 Maple Lane, though, where my buddies in the church’s men’s group, the Brotherhood of St. Andrew, will be frying fish — and more — Fridays from 6-8 p.m. through the end of March.

Want something a little more fancy than a fish sandwich? Try their sautéed tilapia filet with white wine sauce over a bed of wild rice accompanied by roasted vegetables with a balsamic reduction. A fish sandwich with two sides, hushpuppies and a drink is only $7.75. A half pound of boiled shrimp with cocktail sauce is $7.50. The tilapia dinner with a drink is $9.75.

Clifton awash in ice cream

Within one remarkable week in October, two familiar old Clifton buildings on opposite sides of Frankfort Avenue have turned into ice cream shops. Last week, Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen opened its ninth branch, a café-style shop featuring wine and beer and, of course, ice cream, in the old Longshot Tavern (2232 Frankfort Ave., 409-6111,

A week earlier, Mayor Greg Fischer cut the ribbon to open Comfy Cow’s third branch on the site of the old Genny’s Diner and in the beautifully restored Queen Anne house next door. You know, the one the guy from Genny’s had declared unsalvageable. (It’s at 2221 Frankfort Ave., 409-4616,

Of course I had to try a tasting: $2.76 for a single scoop at the Pie Kitchen, $3.15 at the Cow. Frankly, they both smelled and tasted very good, with a fresh, clean chocolate scent and pure flavor. I gave the Comfy Cow the nod based on superior texture and flavor, but it was a close race. Pay your money and take your choice.

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Big Ben swings like a pendulum do

Fish tacos at Big Ben Cafe

Voice-Tribune review by LouisvilleHotBytes

England swings like a pendulum do.
Bobbies on bicycles, two by two.
Westminster Abbey, the tower of Big Ben …

Roger Miller’s memorably kitschy tune is one of those melodies that sticks in your head until you want to bang your skull on the wall to make it go away.

Louisville’s new Big Ben, happily, isn’t anything like that. But drop by during a busy lunch hour or balmy evening, and chances are you will find the place swinging.

Head for the village center of new-made-to-look-old Norton Commons, and you can hardly miss the busy scene of outdoor tables and red umbrellas set up across the front of Big Ben’s red-brick quarters. Within, it’s an independent eatery made to look a great deal like a franchise chain, a dream that I suspect the owners have in mind.
Continue reading Big Ben swings like a pendulum do

Taste of Mesopotamia at Dejlah Bistro

mezza plate
Mezza Plate at Dejlah Bistro. Photo by Ron Jasin.

LEO’s Eats with LouisvilleHotBytes

]More than 7,500 years ago, historians say, early hunter-gatherers started moving in small bands down from the mountains north of the Persian Gulf to settle along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. They saved and planted seeds, domesticated farm animals, and eventually founded the world’s first cities, then its first empires, in Mesopotamia, the rich land “between the rivers.”

The ancient Mesopotamians invented writing, not to mention bread, wine and beer. Indeed, the need to provide a growing population with food and drink inspired the first civilization, the fertile soil to which we all trace back our cultural roots.
Continue reading Taste of Mesopotamia at Dejlah Bistro

El Rumbon Cuban Trailer gives new meaning to ‘road food’

Sandwich from El Rumbon
Sandwich from El Rumbon

LEO’s Eats with LouisvilleHotBytes

Fidel Castro is sliding into retirement, and anti-Cuba sentiment feels oh-so ’60s nowadays. We still can’t legally smoke Cuban cigars, but they’re not so hard to score. And Cuban food is starting to look like the next big thing on the Louisville culinary scene.

Havana Rumba broke the ice, earning instant popularity when it opened in St. Matthews almost six years ago; the owners quickly doubled down with sibling Mojito and, more recently, a second location in Middletown. Cocos Lokos added another quality option on the Hurstbourne corridor last year, and Cuba Libre, new in Jeffersonville this summer, is drawing crowds.

Now, an amiable Cuban chef named Reinold Febles has added yet another tasty dimension with Cuban street food. Febles, who’s worked in a number of kitchens around town, sets up his large, spic-and-span food trailer on auto-dealer parking lots around Oxmoor Center, serving Cuban food as well as some Mexican favorites (burritos, quesadillas) and Norteamericano fried chicken and hot dogs.
Continue reading El Rumbon Cuban Trailer gives new meaning to ‘road food’

Salads to order, chop chop at Chop Shop

salad with beef

Voice-Tribune review by LouisvilleHotBytes
Stand in the center of St. Matthews at lunch time and look around. Try to find something healthy. Okay, there’s … um … pub grub. More pub grub. And still more pub grub! There’s a hearty Irish stew. Over there, hot dogs. Quick-service Chinese food. Fast-food sandwiches. Fried fish, and more fried fish. Danish pastries, yum … and pizza!

Yep, we’ve got lots of goodies to tantalize the taste buds here, but options are more limited when you’re in the mood for a light and healthy lunch. Continue reading Salads to order, chop chop at Chop Shop