Louisville's original meatpacking district
One of Louisville’s oldest neighborhoods, Butchertown, just east of downtown, was the city’s original meatpacking district with butcher shops dominating the area in the 1800s. These days, though one large meatpacker still anchors the area, Butchertown is in the middle of a renaissance and is seeing an influx of tasty restaurants, chic boutiques, the city’s only brandy distillery, and a state-of-the-art soccer
EAT & DRINK
Start your morning at Butchertown Grocery Bakery, a European-style bakery where the bread and pastries are made fresh daily.
For a locally sourced meal with a unique twist, including a variety of vegan options, try Naïve or Decade for New American cuisine with Italian and French influences. For handmade pasta, wood-fired pizza, and craft cocktails, there’s Pizza Lupo.
Tropical vibes await at South Seas, a cantina and tiki bar, with live music and patio seating. Celebrity Chef Edward Lee brings a modern interpretation to Korean food at his newest restaurant, Nami, and to the more casual Neighbors Noodles, at the same address. Pho Ba Luu is known for its Vietnamese specialties and Saigon street food favorites like banh mi sandwiches. Chick’n & Mi specializes in Asian-inspired Southern comfort food, including a fun twist on fried chicken. Cultured, a cheese and charcuterie bar, features local and unique farmstead cheeses, charcuterie and a dynamic selection of carefully curated wines, beer and Bourbon.
Cured Restaurant & Salumeria offers cocktails and locally sourced meats that are house-cured by owner and artisan Alvio Lapinet. Pig Beach BBQ serves up savory chef-driven barbecue alongside scenic views of the Ohio River.
For beer, try TEN20 Craft Brewery, offering a beer garden and an indoor taproom with food by Happy Belly Bistro and MozzaPi. Or whet your whistle at Sergio’s World of Beers with more than 1,000 options. For whiskey, visit Tartan House, a cozy lounge specializing in both classic and house cocktails.
Butchertown is home to Bourbon City’s only brandy distillery, Copper & Kings. Take a tour before enjoying classic cocktails at Copper & Kings Rooftop Bar, boasting stunning views of downtown Louisville.
Play Dance Bar, Louisville’s largest LGBTQ night club, is the neighborhood hot spot for drag shows and dance parties. For live music, visit High Horse Bar and The Whirling Tiger is the place to catch live music. For some vintage bowling, Vernon Lanes is the place to roll. The historic bowling alley’s eight wooden lanes are newly refurbished, but maintain a cool retro vibe, and the menu is worth a visit on its own. Or, catch a professional soccer game at Lynn Family Stadium, home to women’s soccer team, Racing Louisville FC, and men’s team, Louisville City FC. For X Games style fun, David Armstrong Extreme Park features 40,000 square feet of outdoor, concrete skating surface, as well as a 24-foot full pipe and a wooden vert ramp.
Waterfront Park offers history, art, recreation and relaxation along Louisville’s riverfront. For stunning views, walk across the Big Four Bridge, spanning the Ohio River and connecting Kentucky and Indiana. Explore public art installations, including Ed Hamilton’s “Lincoln Memorial” or enjoy multiple playgrounds and picnic areas throughout. You can also connect with nature at the Waterfront Botanical Gardens, offering views of downtown Louisville.
Experience the area’s rich history at the Thomas Edison House where you’ll be enlightened about the inventor’s time in Louisville. A walk through this neighborhood is an architectural delight. From the iconic steeples of St. Joseph Catholic Church (built in 1866) to the modest shotgun houses mixed among more highly styled Italianates and Victorians with Eastlake details, walkers will notice the pattern of street names invoking the early days of the Republic (Washington, Franklin, Adams, Quincy, Buchanan, and Kentucky’s own Henry Clay).
Butchertown Market is a one-stop-shop for a little retail therapy. You’ll find clothing, jewelry, home décor and one-of-a-kind gifts at Work the Metal. Moss Hill makes handcrafted lotions, soaps and candles with specialty scents like Bourbon and Mint Julep. At Bourbon Barrel Foods, you can pick up Bourbon barrel smoked spices, small-batch soy sauce aged in Bourbon barrels and specialty bitters. Master Milliner Jenny Pfanenstiel creates some of the standout hats of each Derby season at her shop, Formé Millinery Co. Just around the corner, you’ll find Hard Times Collective, a vintage shop filled with eclectic goods made by local vendors. For creatives, check out PYRO Gallery.
Hadley Pottery has been handcrafting American pottery since 1940 and features a whimsical collection of everything from platters and plates to mugs and bowls. You’ll note its many uses as decorative plaques among the houses and sidewalks of this historic neighborhood.
Featured Attractions & Things to Do
Butchertown Brewing is a small batch craft brewer based in Louisville, KY. We like to age beer in spirit barrels...
Copper & Kings is an American brandy company, based in Butchertown that makes a dynamic American-style brandy. Their...
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Ten20 Craft Brewery, a 22,000-square-foot craft brewery production facility and taproom has a mission of bringing people...
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The Waterfront Botanical Gardens was started by Botanica, an umbrella organization for the local gardening community that...