By Minda Honey | Out and About
Hello, spring! Spring time in Louisville is here and gone before you know it. To fully enjoy these blissful few weeks of warm weather without the oppressive humidity – grab your sunnies and get to brunch on one of the best patios in the city.
Two words: Sunday Funday. The River House just doubled their patio to 8,000 square feet. Not only do you get a great view of the river but you can walk down to a grassy area and chill with friends in Adirondack chairs around a fire pit. Brunch goes until 3 p.m., so take your time getting out of bed. Plus, there’s a full outdoor bar on the Levee end of the patio.
Sip On: Back Porch Tea – Knob Creek rye, Regatta ginger beer and lime.
Nosh On: Chef Varanese’s creativity is on full display during brunch. You have the option of ordering off their special brunch menu or their all-day menu. Your server will start you off with a small cast iron pan of their sugar crusted corn bread. The house-made deviled eggs topped with cured salmon are a must. The Southern fried quail legs are a play on a proper Southern supper and the Southern French toast – topped with caramelized bananas, toasted pecans and whipped cream – will have you feeling like you ate dessert for breakfast. For seafood lovers, there’s the Maker’s 46 smoked salmon Benedict, and land lovers can indulge in the beef tenderloin eggs Benedict. Win-win.
The Hub just spruced up their patio and it’s perfect for getting your day drink on with a few friends. Sit at the counter-height seating that faces the sidewalk if you’re the people-watching type. Even if you can’t grab a table out on the patio, The Hub rolls up their garage doors on nice days so you can still indulge in some fresh air.
Sip On: $1 mimosas, $5 bloody Marys; non-drinkers will love the $5 Brazilian lemonade
Nosh On: Went too hard on Saturday night? Nurse your hangover with The Weekender – two eggs, house bacon, house breakfast sausage, roasted potatoes and two pancakes. I went with the breakfast nachos – Chipotle beer cheese, breakfast sausage, tomato, cilantro, green onions and a sunny side up egg. If runny yolks aren’t your thing, they’re happy to scramble the eggs into your nachos (but I recommend ordering that YOLK!). The creamy beer cheese and fresh tomatoes balance out the hint of spice in the sausage.
The undeniable jewel of LouVino’s brunch is the champagne bar. Get a group of besties together to partake in your special bubbly concoction. Order a flute of rosé, prosecco or champagne, then add the juice of your choice – flavors rotate but there was pineapple, strawberry-basil and, of course, orange when I went. Then spice it up with a dash of cayenne or crushed basil or strawberries or nutmeg – so many options! After your mimosa is mixed, head back out to the patio and enjoy!
Sip On: Get the bubbly bar
Nosh On: The pancake tacos and BLT are among their most popular brunch dishes. I went with the general manager’s favorite, the maple eggs Benedict – soft poached eggs, grit cakes, country ham and spiced maple hollandaise sauce. The maple is subtle, not overpowering or too sweet. Just right.
Red Barn Kitchen
With limited brunch offerings in the area, Red Barn Kitchen’s new brunch was a welcome addition to the lineup. Grab a chair at their outdoor bar or snag a seat at a table under a red patio umbrella.
Sip On: $1 mimosas, $4 bloody Marys
Nosh On: If your stomach is roaring for sustenance, order the fried chicken and waffles – half a chicken, corn waffles, bourbon maple syrup, spiked honey and pickles. The chicken is crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside, just as it should be. And while you’re at it, order a Hillbilly Hash for the table — pulled pork, caramelized onion, poached egg, pickled onion and jalapeño relish — because you can’t go to a barbecue joint and not order the barbecue!
Finn’s Southern Kitchen
Spend some casual time with your neighbors on the patio at Finn’s. String lights, festive striped umbrellas and picnic tables give their patio a fun, communal vibe. Kentucky crooner Brent Mathis will be providing music every Sunday. Owner Steve Clements also has plans to partner with other artists during the warm-weather months ahead.
Sip On: 2-for-1 bloody Marys and mimosas
Nosh On: Bite into a little Louisville legacy and order the Hot Brown – turkey, bacon, tomato and house mornay on an English muffin. Or go coastal with everyone’s Cali favorite: avocado toast with egg, shaved radish and micro herb. The avocado toast is listed as a starter but there is definitely enough there to make a meal of it. The toast is so thick and fluffy – a total dream. And Finn’s gets that perfect, crispy edge on their fried eggs.
This is the brunch spot for you if you stayed in on Saturday night and are looking for a high-energy, lively Sunday morning brunch. The last Sunday of every month, they host a drag brunch. Bask in the full glory of the sun out on the patio or grab a tall table near the garage doors to sit in the shade.
Sip On: $2 mimosas or $15 for a pitcher; $5 bloody Marys
Nosh On: Chef Cecilia is from a small town outside of Puerto Vallarta, and she’s brought those flavors to Somewhere’s brunch menu. If you want the breakfast empanadas – chicken-filled, topped with egg, drizzled with poblano cream and fresco cheese – you’d better get there early because they go fast. The chilaquiles – house-made tortillas topped with chorizo, salsa verde and two eggs – is a mountain of yum. Pickled red cabbage and creamy avocado play nice with the heat from the chorizo.