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The Eater Louisville Heatmap: Where to Eat Right Now

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More often than not, tipsters, readers, friends and family of Eater have one question: Where should I eat right now? Restaurant obsessives want to know what's new, what's hot, which favorite chef just launched a sophomore effort, where to sip the latest, greatest cocktail creation. Thus, we offer the Eater Heatmap, which will change often to highlight where the Louisville crowds are flocking to at the moment. (The restaurants are listed by geographic location, not by merit.)

This month's Heatmap has two changes:
Added: Loop 22, Taco Luchador
Removed: Game, Guaca-Mole

Suggestions for next month's Heatmap will be welcomed in the comments.


Eater Louisville Heatmap history

· Dec 6, 2012 Initial Eater Louisville Heatmap.
· Jan. 3, 2013 Added Feast BBQ, Guaca Mole and Relish.
· Feb. 7, 2013 Added Mussel & Burger Bar.
· March 7, 2013 Added: MilkWood and Game. Removed: 610 Magnolia and Hammerheads.
· April 4, 2013 Added: The Exchange Pub + Kitchen.
· May 2, 2013 No changes
· June 6, 2013 Removed: St. Charles Exchange.
· July 11, 2013 Added: La Coop: Bistro à Vins.
· Aug. 1, 2013 Added: Garage Bar.
· Sept. 5, 2013 No changes.
· Oct. 3, 2013 Added: Havana Rumba Express & Tapas Bar. Removed: Garage Bar, Harvest, Holy Grale, Proof on Main, Seviche: A Latin Restaurant.
· November 8, 2013 Added: Atlantic No. 5, El Camino. Removed: Relish, Havana Rumba Express.
· December 10, 2013 No changes.
· January 2, 2014 Added: The Monkey Wrench. Removed: La Coop: Bistro a Vins.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. The Exchange Pub + Kitchen

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118 West Main Street
New Albany, IN 47150
Rave reviews in LEO Weekly and Louisville Courier-Journal help explain why this New Albany gastropub is drawing big crowds, even in the middle of the week.

2. Feast BBQ

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116 West Main Street
New Albany, IN 47150
(812) 920-0454
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Dishes like its barbecued tofu and brisket provide a reason to ford the Ohio (other than to play the slots or see the naked ladies, of course). Tater tots, vinegar slaw and collard greens sides pair well with everything.

3. Atlantic No. 5

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605 West Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202
Chef Tyler Morris has moved from Rye on Market to this lunchbox-decorated Main Street café, and now presents "an Innovative take on lunchtime classics and a full selection of coffees by local roasters." The bacon & egg sandwich is excellent for either breakfast or lunch, as is the coffee.

4. MilkWood

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316 West Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202
The "comfort bar food with an Asian pantry" at Edward Lee's Actors Theatre spot appeals to diners with tastes as traditional as Shakespeare (go with the burger) and as experimental as Pinter (the scallop and pork belly entree).

5. Decca

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812 E Market St
Louisville, KY 40206
(502) 749-8128
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A San Francisco transplant, chef Annie Pettry's NuLu kitchen has quickly impressed in Louisville with its "commitment to locally farmed and small production ingredients."

6. Rye On Market

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900 E Market St
Louisville, KY 40206
(502) 749-6200
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"We would love to establish ourselves based on our chef-driven menu and ingredient-focused philosophy," Rye's general manager wrote recently in an email. Based on the crowds at this NuLu new American restaurant, however, it's already done so.

7. Monkey Wrench

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1025 Barret Ave
Louisville, KY 40204
(502) 582-2433
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Executive Chef Dustin Staggers has added an upgraded menu to Dennie Humphrey's newly renovated establishment, serving skillet-fried chicken, burgoo, burgers and more.

8. El Taco Luchador

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938 Baxter Ave
Louisville, KY 40204
(502) 583-0440
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It seems Fernando Martinez can't stop opening restaurants. The man behind Guaca-Mole and Mussel & Burger bar now has a tiny, tasty taqueria offering tortas, tacos and more.

9. The Silver Dollar

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1761 Frankfort Ave
Louisville, KY 40206
(502) 259-9540
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This East End honky-tonk, "centered around Bakersfield Sound music and Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey," was named one of the top 10 whiskey bars in America by GQ. It's also a hot spot for brunch.

10. El Camino

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1314 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40204
A mashup of Mexican street food stall, surf punk shack and tiki bar landed on Bardstown Road in late 2012. Brian Enyart, former Chef de Cuisine of both Topolombampo and Frontera Grill, is now Executive Chef.

11. Loop 22

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22 Dundee St
Louisville, KY
(502) 882-3279
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Adam Burress and Chase Mucerino, the guys behind Hammerheads & Game, have joined new partner Eric Morris for another meat-centric restaurant, this time mainly focused on rotisserie duck and chicken.

12. Mussel & Burger Bar

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9200 Taylorsville Rd.
Louisville, KY 40299
This February 2013 opening, one of the few reasons to eat in Jtown, has quickly thrust itself into "best burger in town" conversations.

1. The Exchange Pub + Kitchen

118 West Main Street, New Albany, IN 47150
Rave reviews in LEO Weekly and Louisville Courier-Journal help explain why this New Albany gastropub is drawing big crowds, even in the middle of the week.
118 West Main Street
New Albany, IN 47150

2. Feast BBQ

116 West Main Street, New Albany, IN 47150
Dishes like its barbecued tofu and brisket provide a reason to ford the Ohio (other than to play the slots or see the naked ladies, of course). Tater tots, vinegar slaw and collard greens sides pair well with everything.
116 West Main Street
New Albany, IN 47150

3. Atlantic No. 5

605 West Main Street, Louisville, KY 40202
Chef Tyler Morris has moved from Rye on Market to this lunchbox-decorated Main Street café, and now presents "an Innovative take on lunchtime classics and a full selection of coffees by local roasters." The bacon & egg sandwich is excellent for either breakfast or lunch, as is the coffee.
605 West Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202

4. MilkWood

316 West Main Street, Louisville, KY 40202
The "comfort bar food with an Asian pantry" at Edward Lee's Actors Theatre spot appeals to diners with tastes as traditional as Shakespeare (go with the burger) and as experimental as Pinter (the scallop and pork belly entree).
316 West Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202

5. Decca

812 E Market St, Louisville, KY 40206
A San Francisco transplant, chef Annie Pettry's NuLu kitchen has quickly impressed in Louisville with its "commitment to locally farmed and small production ingredients."
812 E Market St
Louisville, KY 40206

6. Rye On Market

900 E Market St, Louisville, KY 40206
"We would love to establish ourselves based on our chef-driven menu and ingredient-focused philosophy," Rye's general manager wrote recently in an email. Based on the crowds at this NuLu new American restaurant, however, it's already done so.
900 E Market St
Louisville, KY 40206

7. Monkey Wrench

1025 Barret Ave, Louisville, KY 40204
Executive Chef Dustin Staggers has added an upgraded menu to Dennie Humphrey's newly renovated establishment, serving skillet-fried chicken, burgoo, burgers and more.
1025 Barret Ave
Louisville, KY 40204

8. El Taco Luchador

938 Baxter Ave, Louisville, KY 40204
It seems Fernando Martinez can't stop opening restaurants. The man behind Guaca-Mole and Mussel & Burger bar now has a tiny, tasty taqueria offering tortas, tacos and more.
938 Baxter Ave
Louisville, KY 40204

9. The Silver Dollar

1761 Frankfort Ave, Louisville, KY 40206
This East End honky-tonk, "centered around Bakersfield Sound music and Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey," was named one of the top 10 whiskey bars in America by GQ. It's also a hot spot for brunch.
1761 Frankfort Ave
Louisville, KY 40206

10. El Camino

1314 Bardstown Road, Louisville, KY 40204
A mashup of Mexican street food stall, surf punk shack and tiki bar landed on Bardstown Road in late 2012. Brian Enyart, former Chef de Cuisine of both Topolombampo and Frontera Grill, is now Executive Chef.
1314 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY 40204

11. Loop 22

22 Dundee St, Louisville, KY
Adam Burress and Chase Mucerino, the guys behind Hammerheads & Game, have joined new partner Eric Morris for another meat-centric restaurant, this time mainly focused on rotisserie duck and chicken.
22 Dundee St
Louisville, KY

12. Mussel & Burger Bar

9200 Taylorsville Rd., Louisville, KY 40299
This February 2013 opening, one of the few reasons to eat in Jtown, has quickly thrust itself into "best burger in town" conversations.
9200 Taylorsville Rd.
Louisville, KY 40299