Food & Drink

The 13 Best Things to Eat in Louisville for $5 or Less

Published On 08/10/2015 Published On 08/10/2015
Flickr/steve loya
El Taco Luchador
Please & Thank You
Courtesy of RYE
El Camino
Courtesy of Joshua Mcdonald
Courtesy of Lindsey McClave
Courtesy of Garage Bar
Courtesy of Tommy Johns
Flickr/Jason Meredith
Courtesy of Lindsey McClave
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1. Dairy Kastle 575 Eastern Pkwy, Louisville, KY 40217

The small outdoor seating area at Dairy Kastle is always overflowing with people enjoying sweet treats like Orange Cows (orange sherbet with vanilla ice cream and sprite). They also serve hot dogs, brats, nachos, and BBQ pork.

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2. Ollie's Trolley 978 S 3rd St, Louisville, KY 40203

Step up into this Old Louisville trolley car "fast food" joint and place your order (which should definitely include a burger). You might need to eat it in your car, especially in winter, but that’s okay. It’s just part of the charm. Oh, and it has great fries, so don’t skip ‘em!

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3. El Taco Luchador 938 Baxter Ave, Louisville, KY 40204

Tacos, tortas, guacamole, and grilled street corn are all on the menu at El Taco Luchador. This spot embrasses the "fast-casual" movement, serving fresh, high quality, food at killer prices ($3.75 or less for tacos).

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4. Please & Thank You 800 E Market St, Louisville, KY 40206

Please & Thank You is a hip small-batch bakery, coffee house, and record store in one, meaning you can stop by to sip a latte while listening to vinyl tunes and biting into its famously decadent chocolate chip cookies. Though it's not your typical brunch spot, Please & Thank You also offers some excellent breakfast fare at the counter, including a range of bagels (add some color to your morning with the Rebel, an every-seed bagel with cream cheese and rainbow sprinkles) and incredible egg sliders anointed with habanero on brioche buns.

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5. RYE 900 E Market St, Louisville, KY 40206

This NuLu cocktail bar is ever-changing and always on point, which makes it a no-brainer when your cocktail craving strikes.

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6. El Camino 1314 Bardstown Rd, Louisville, KY 40204

Tequila might never be the most popular spirit in The 'Ville, but El Camino is certainly making it a runner-up. The drink menu here is “artisan Tiki” offering both twists on traditional options like a Mai Tai or a daiquiri, and more traditional libations like bowls of punch that you should definitely not try to drink by yourself. And whoever said honky-tonks don't deliver on food hasn't checked out El Camino's list of Mexican eats, which includes savory creations like grilled petite filete with cotija, and a pan roasted salmon with grilled pear.

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7. The Post 1045 Goss Ave, Louisville, KY 40217

The Post has fixed the lack of seriously good pizza in The 'Ville, and created a gorgeous space out of an old VFW hall that’s welcoming to hipsters and families simultaneously. Plus, excellent beer options seal the deal.

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8. Stevens & Stevens Delicatessen 1114 Bardstown Rd, Louisville, KY 40204

This Highlands deli is one of the best sandwich crafters around. It features an extensive menu of sandos, soups, salads, breads and just about anything else that could appease your lunchtime hunger. Pro tip: go with the BLT with Benedictine.

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9. Garage Bar 700 E Market St, Louisville, KY 40202

Especially in the warmer months, this renovated garage in the trendy NuLu area is a must-visit. Glowing ping pong tables, Astroturf-covered places to perch, and a consistently ultra-hip crowd make this bar the go-to destination for sticky, hot nights in The ‘Ville. Garage Bar uses local veggies and cured meats to top its pizzas, which bake in a blistering wood-fired brick oven. Be sure to order a tasting platter from the ham bar (yes, it has a bar dedicated to ham) to pair with your pie. It’s got a pretty extensive beer list, too.

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10. The Silver Dollar 1761 Frankfort Ave, Louisville, KY 40206

If it’s too loud... you’re at the right place. The Silver Dollar (located in a renovated firehouse) is known for loud honky-tonk and whiskey by the drink, and the Christmas lights décor extends to the back patio. Johnny Cash, Four Roses neat, and warm breeze -- nothing but a perfect year-round combination.

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11. Wiltshire Pantry Bakery and Cafe 901 Barret Ave, Louisville, KY 40204

After they found success selling their goods at farmers markets, Wiltshire Pantry decided to open this retail bakery in Highlands. They serve a full range of breakfast pastry, lunch sandwiches, and breads -- including one of the best croissants this side of the Atlantic.