You will only ever have one mom, and if she's anything like my mommy, she is priceless beyond measure. My own mother has spent the last twenty-three years baking things for my insatiable appetite, doing this dishes and forgoing her own hobbies to spend time working for her family. This mothers day, I want to treat my mom to an amazing meal that she doesn't have to cook, clean up after, or think about too hard. Lucky for me, Louisville restaurants are ready and willing to provide some fantastic options!
Hillbilly Tea 
My love for this downtown eatery is hardly a secret—who can resist the combination of tea served in mason jars and local fresh food? The BEST news is that Hillbilly Tea has started serving BOOZE, including a mint tea julep. SERIOUSLY.
Ref Velvet pancakes, blue cheese biscuits and a bacon bloody mary...sometimes The Village Anchor really is the most simple and elegant choice. The patio is marvelous, and the inside décor is half French brothel and half swanky restaurant—deliciously lush and delectably fresh. This is where I'm taking my own mother to celebrate Mother's day.
For rich Italian on Frankfort Avenue (or for Italian generally) you can't beat Volare. Volare is offering a gorgeous brunch buffet for $30 per person with options like Dumante toast, applewood smoke bacon, Penne Bolognaise and house made gnocchi in vodka sauce. Volare does an amazing vodka sauce, it's really not to be missed.
The Silver Dollar hasn't been around for very long, but it has taken up a much needed space in the food scene of Louisville. This honky-tonk, Southwestern, whiskey infused Frankfort Avenue haven has a brunch menu to die for with cornbread pancakes, a fried oyster sandwich, and chilaquiles verdes. The Silver Dollar is loud, but the food is so fabulous and the atmosphere of the renovated fire house is so amazing you won't mind.
Avalon, on Bardstown Road, is really known for their lobster mac-n-cheese, a decadent umami infused creation unlikely to be forgotten! Avalon also has a gorgeous outdoor dining area perfect for spring weather, and $19.95 brunch buffet chock full of their American classics done well.
Perhaps you're going to be out of town on Mother's day—or you've just procrastinated for so long you can't get a table anywhere? Do the best thing you could possibly do with your mother—spend TIME with her. Cooking at the Cottage, right off Lexington Road, offers a variety of classes including “Spring has Sprung at the Farmer's Market” where you can learn to make braised leeks with fresh herbs, strawberry shortcake with lavender infused whipped cream and cream of asparagus soup on Tuesday, May 15th! The classes are very affordable ($45-$75 for two people) and you will learn to make all manner of amazing food, plus spend quality time with your mom!
One of the newest swankier places in town is offering a Mother's day brunch prix-fixe menu with four courses for $65 per person. The menu is marvelously varied with tons of choices including: “Elvis on Horseback”, peanut butter stuffed dates with a banana vinaigrette and bacon (sounds intriguing!) and “Duck Diane” with green peppercorn cognac butter, glazed cippolinis, yam croquette and jubilee cherries!
The Brown Hotel 
The Brown Hotel offers TWO brunches this mother's day; a casual brunch buffet at J. Graham's for $40 per adult and $20 per child (basic options like a waffle and omelet station) ; and a more formal brunch at The English Grill for $56 per person, with options including chicken stuffed roasted lobster and hazelnut opera cake!
photos: Elizabeth Orrick