Category Archives: Guest columnist

Essays, reports and commentary by special guest writers.

Caffe Perusa is a secret that can’t be kept

Caffe Perusa
Caffe Perusa’s “A Study of Oysters” features oysters prepared in six different ways, from a traditional oyster dressing to crispy with rosemary barbecue sauce. LEO photos by Jane Mattingly

LEO’s Eats with; Guest Critic Kevin Gibson

Walking into Caffe Perusa is a bit of a shock – it’s true that Louisville has a diverse and reputable fine-dining scene, but to find something like this in a strip mall is unexpected.

The wood floors, impeccable décor and crystal-adorned table settings in the main dining area are set off by a perimeter lined with booths that feature white Roman ionic columns and circular arches, set against accents of gold and red. The two-level, 10,000-square-foot restaurant also has four private dining rooms and a wine cellar that holds 10,000 bottles. Outside seating is being developed and should be open in a few weeks.
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Industry Standard: The Invisible Menu Page

A friend of mine recently told me she had to cut short a restaurant visit because her godson couldn’t find anything on the menu that he wanted to order. “Why didn’t you just get him a grilled cheese, or a kid’s pizza or something?” I asked. Her answer? “Those weren’t on the menu.”

All of a sudden, I realized she didn’t know about The Invisible Menu Page. I found myself wondering how many other people are unaware of this glorious restaurant phenomenon.
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Unchained Macca’s delights at Westport Village

Macca’s Florida Seafood Grill & Bar holds down a prime spot in the Westport Village center. Outside seating, clean restrooms and a full bar, with plenty of scurrying employees wearing matching attire, put Macca’s squarely in the upscale-casual realm. Photo by Robin Garr.

LEO’s Eats with, with Guest Critic Kevin Gibson

If Macca’s Florida Seafood Grill & Bar, with its clean, corporate, angular design and requisite marine-centric décor, looks like it could be part of a chain, that’s probably more than coincidental – this sleek, family-friendly restaurant was originally going to be an R.J. Gator’s franchise, but corporate expansion plans by the Florida-based restaurant chain got put on the back burner, reportedly for economic reasons.
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Industry Standard: It’s called “the special” for a reason!

“Hi, I’ll be your server tonight. Would you like to hear about the specials?”

Thousands of diners across Louisville hear this invitation every time they dine out. Most of them will smile, nod, and then order from the menu, not realizing what they could be missing.
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Industry Standard: Always make a reservation

This week it’s my pleasure to introduce an old friend from and the local restaurant community. Marsha Lynch, the pastry chef at Café Lou Lou, is a culinary graduate of Sullivan University and has worked at Louisville independent restaurants, including Limestone, Jack Fry’s, Jarfi’s and L&N Wine Bar and Bistro.

From time to time, Marsha will step up to join me on this pulpit with a new column, “Industry Standard,” subtitled “Insider info for those who dine out,” a hearty menu of tips and tidbits aimed at offering the dining public a fresh view of the restaurant business from an insider’s perspective.


Always make a reservation

“What’s on the book?”
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