The ceramic pig outside signals the great pork barbecue inside. A smoked-meat empire in the making and Louisville favorite since 1988, Mark’s barbecue chicken, pork, and spicy mustard-based sauce keep it on the carnivore club’s frequent-visit list. Also, try the onion straws and fried corn.
This offshoot of Louisville’s only Spanish restaurant De la Torres, La Bodega offers a tapas-only menu of hot and cold items in a cozy space next door to its Highlands progenitor. Appetizer-size portions of roasted red peppers and eggplant, mussels picante and other traditional dishes allow for easy mixing and matching.
Lively Italian dining with fresh-baked focaccia, a generous menu and tables with enough seats for a small army. The Penne Rustica, which features shrimp or chicken, smoked prosciutto and penne pasta baked in crockery with a golden halo of cheese, is a hearty favorite.
Bravo serves Italian food in a fun environment under Roman “ruins.” The open kitchen prepares hickory-smoked steaks, chops and whole fresh fish. Try the wood-grilled salmon salad or Sicilian pizza, made in a wood-fired oven.