Ready for some Louisville?! We were first in the Derby City a few years ago, when we were resting up for several days after our massive “Fabric of America” road trip. While our first impression – read about that here – was a good one, we didn’t do a whole lot due to our desire to be laid out after 15,000 miles on the road.
So, we recently went back to check out Louisville once again. In fact, we went there multiple times! Why? Why not! We really liked the city and what it has to offer. And, while we didn’t get to everything, we did see and do (and eat and drink) all sorts of things.
Let’s check it out!
We stayed at the 21c Museum Hotel in downtown Louisville. It’s an amazing boutique hotel with an art museum and gallery that’s open 24 hours a day.
The hotel even has its signature penguins that you can move around the hallways. Ha.
And these cool installations outside…
I was hesitant to even mention the hotel in this post, because someone who works for them – who seems to have no clue how publicity works – actually sent us a C&D for posting our own pictures of the gallery on one of our Instagram accounts.
I sent them a scathing reply and copied their PR department on the email. I never heard back. I also messaged all the artists to let them know. We were obviously super-salty about this and said we wouldn’t mention them in this post.
Alas, it is a really cool hotel, and one jerk at a company shouldn’t taint the entire experience. Plus, the staff at the 21c is amazing, and we had a blast with them every time we were in town. We do recommend it as it was an unforgettable stay…I guess, just…yeah…
So then! As the hotel is downtown, we were right next to the USA Cycling Championships during one of our stays. This made for some pretty cool experiences, but also for a lot of dodging cyclists who apparently think it’s okay to race down the sidewalks when they’re not actually in a race. Almost got run over outside the hotel a few times!
Not bitter, either! Some hotel rep and dangerous cyclists weren’t and aren’t going to ruin this awesome city! We actually did love both experiences, but couldn’t resist sharing the truth.
Let’s move along and see some more of downtown! The city has a very historic center, even though there’s a lot of new construction going on. It also has an entire block (or more) of distilleries and all that called Whiskey Row. So, if you like bourbon, you know where you should be!
Gotta love a city that has public access to bicycles, with its Louvelo bike-sharing program.
This nice gent was rocking out and let me take his picture…
Inside the Louisville Beer Store in the NuLu neighborhood, which has tons of craft and classic beers from all over the world as well as a tap room…
And, in case you didn’t know already, the city is home to the Louisville Slugger! It has its very famous museum and factory right in the middle of downtown, and people come from all over to see how it’s all done and learn about its history.
Because of Louisville’s history with the Louisville Slugger bat and baseball, there are plaques all over downtown celebrating players that have used their tools over the years.
It’s definitely worth a visit, even if you aren’t that into baseball.
There’s also some nice public art and murals in the city, thanks to its progressive stance and growing commitment to the arts. Something we have seen in places like Chattanooga, but something that is lacking in other cities, like Nashville.
The famous Belgravia Court, with its tree-lined boulevard and historic homes is always worth a walk…
One of our favorite things to do – as you may already know – is to hit a soccer game for whatever city we’re visiting. Louisville is home to the very popular Louisville City FC, so we headed to the stadium to check out a match.
It was as exciting and fun as it should be, and we recommend sitting in the supporters’ section to keep things extra-uplifting.
Before the match, though, we went to one of our favorite spots: Against the Grain Brewery. They’ve always got what we want and need in both beer and food, and it’s where fans of Lou City pre-game (and post-game) for the time being, as the team will soon be getting its own stadium. (ATG will also be opening a new tap room in another neighborhood soon.)
We’ll get to more delicious Louisville food in a bit, but let’s check out some breweries first! There are quite a few in the city, so we had to pick and choose as we just couldn’t see them all…this time! We’ll see all of you we’ve seen before, and all of you we have yet to see, sooner than later. 😉
As you probably already know, we love us some craft beer, but we also visit breweries as part of our Hopsmash project. So then…all of these are recommended, as we had great suds and met nice people at every one. Including, of course, at Against the Grain above. Weeeee!
Mile Wide Beer Co...thanks to Scott, Jason, Casey, Danny, and Katie for the good times!
Goodwood Brewing Co...thanks to Garrett for the hospitality!
Great Flood Brewing Co...thanks to Scott and Alex!
And! Cumberland Brews. This spot is more of a cozy pub, but brews its own beer and has food to keep us focused. Thanks to Jessica here for the hospitality.
And with that, let’s segue into some more food! There are endless, delicious places to eat in Louisville, and you can pretty much find anything you want. We hit up some great spots during our original visit, and hit the above breweries to eat, but here are a few more that are worth checking out.
Feast BBQ in NuLu…
Thai Noodles outside the city…
Ditto’s Grill in the Highlands neighborhood with my godfather and his husband…sadly, no good pix with those awesome guys!
Some old-school Louisville classics at the Bristol Bar & Grille with the family, also in the Highlands neighborhood…
…phew! After all that, let’s have some coffee and dessert.
Quills was the spot for us, of which there are a few in the city.
And for dessert? Insane cakes from the Homemade Ice Cream & Pie Kitchen! There are also a few of these scattered around Louisville.
Hang on, I’ve gotta go exercise now. Oof!
And, if you’re looking for the best views of the city, you’ll have to cross over the river to Indiana.
And that’s a wrap! Louisville is awesome, and we really do recommend you don’t skip it when you’re in the region. You can also read our original Louisville post right here. We’ll be back soon!
Be sure to check out our other USA posts right here, and our Hopsmash project right here if you love delicious beer.
A very special and very big thanks to everyone in Louisville. We always have a great time, and it’s mostly because of the amazing people!
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Have you ever been to Louisville? If so, what’d you think? If not, what say ye? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!