As I was preparing “How to do BBQ in Louisville: Part 1“, I realized that I had a lot to say about the fabulous BBQ in this city, and decided to split my love for our local smoke spots into two posts. So without further ado, I give you the last four of my favorite BBQ restaurants in Louisville.
Smoketown USA | 1153 Logan St | Smoketown / Germantown
This place occupies a civil war era building on the corner of Oak and Logan, right on the border where Germantown becomes Smoketown, about a mile from downtown Louisville. The decor is super cool, and the food is incredible! You can buy their amazing homemade BBQ sauce by the bottle at the counter in the restaurant, and I would definitely recommend taking home at least one bottle. Smoketown USA also offers catering for your parties. The beef brisket sandwich is one of the best things I have ever tasted in my life, and the sides of mac n cheese, potato salad, soul greens (you gotta try these), and homemade corn muffins are spectacular. Also try the Cuban Sandwich (wow), the pulled pork, and any of the ribs. I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Doc Crow’s Southern Smokehouse and Raw Bar | 127 W Main St | Central Downtown
Doc Crow’s wins the creative menu award for sure. Back in my first post about BBQ I mentioned that menu items tend to overlap when we talk BBQ because everyone knows the classics. Well Doc Crow’s has the classics, but they also have some incredibly unique menu items, and of course the raw bar. Located in the historic Whiskey Row district, this is a great place to take a date. The decor is hip and swanky, and being located next to the KFC Yum! Center gives you something a little different to do for date night. The dry rubbed baby back ribs melt in your mouth, and when the menu says “no sauce required”, they’re not lying (of course, you can always squirt a little sauce on there). Doc Crow’s also offers a ridiculously tasty burger, but the cap of creativity comes when you order “The Bubba”. This is a half pound steak burger with pulled pork, sliced brisket, fried green tomato, onion ring, and a fried egg, topped with slaw and BBQ sauce…and yes…this is a sandwich.
Against the Grain | 401 E Main St | NuLu \ Downtown
Against the Grain not only serves up some delectable smokey treats, but they are also an on-site brewery, and connected to Louisville Slugger Field! If you decide to visit this establishment on a day that no baseball game is being played, there are plenty of other awesome Louisville things to do within walking distance, including Waterfront Park. As a bonus, outdoor patio seating allows for some nice people watching in the spring, summer, and fall. To me, it is an absolute must that you begin your dining experience with Old Hickory Nachos. Wow, homemade kettle chips topped with pulled pork, jalapenos, and all your favorite nacho toppers. For dinner (or lunch) you need to try The Memphis, Smokehouse Hash, or the Turkey Banh Mi. Did I mention that Against the Grain uses bread from Breadworks? Yep, awesome.
Mark’s Feed Store | 1514 Bardstown Rd | Highlands (and 4 other locations)
A Louisville staple since 1988, Mark’s Feed Store is a classic BBQ restaurant, right down to the red and white checked table cloths. Mark’s cranks out quality “Kentucky BBQ” from an old Kentucky recipe (which they keep secret), ridiculously large sweet iced tea, southern side dishes, and 3 different tasty BBQ sauces (which you can buy by the bottle). The sandwiches are piled high, and the ribs fall off the bone. You also have to try Mark’s Famous Honeywings, the Burgoo (old school KY stew), sweet potato fries, onion straws, and fried pickles. Don’t forget to eat dessert (or take one with you)!
This concludes my two-part feature on the best barbecue restaurants in Louisville. If you like smoked deliciousness, there is plenty to eat here!
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