Exploring Louisville, you’ll find a plethora of delicious restaurants, hip bars, unique local shops, and more with beautiful historic neighborhoods scattered throughout. Among these is the historic Butchertown neighborhood, dating back to the 1800s. Just a few blocks from NuLu and not far from Downtown Louisville, Butchertown originally served as the city’s meatpacking district. Now the area is home to a number of hip restaurants, bars, boutiques, a brandy distillery, and more – plus the streets are lined with unique shotgun houses within walking distance of all the fun! Here’s an up-to-date guide with what to do in Butchertown — including some new options coming soon!
Your Guide to Butchertown
Eat & Drink
Butchertown Grocery & Lola
Home to some of the best gnocchi in town and a menu full of fresh, locally sourced ingredients, Butchertown Grocery serves up a gourmet menu brought to life by Executive Chef Bobby Benjamin. If you’re looking for a more intimate atmosphere, head upstairs to Lola, Butchertown Grocery’s lounge offering the same award-winning menu paired with unique craft cocktails you can’t find anywhere else. (P.S. They’re opening a bakery just down the street in NuLu, making their delectable peanut butter chocolate chip cookies even more accessible!)
A picture-perfect setting paired with photo-ready food, Naïve offers colorful, natural dishes designed to “change the way you think about what’s on your plate.” Their rotating menu consists of mostly plant-based options with several meat dishes as well. Look for selections like mushroom bruschetta, tuna poke, grain bowls, gourmet sandwiches and more. Do you adhere to a specific diet? They offer dairy-free, gluten-free, paleo, vegan, keto, and vegetarian options to accommodate everyone. Pair your meal with a cocktail or a glass of wine, and finish things off with something from their coffee bar.
If you’re looking for authentic Italian featuring fresh-made dough and housemade pasta in one of Butchertown’s historic buildings, check out Pizza Lupo. Their pies are baked in a 900-degree oven imported from Modena, Italy, which creates a tender, delicious crust. Their rotating menu, which showcases locally sourced ingredients, features classics like Margherita pizza and raw oysters complemented by their own creations like the Sting Like A Bee pizza featuring spicy local honey. Pair your meal with a craft cocktail and top things off with a scoop of gelato.
Pho Ba Luu
A staple for Vietnamese cuisine in Louisville, Pho Ba Luu features a fresh menu of classic Vietnamese dishes with a French influence. You’re sure to find the freshest ingredients here as they make daily trips to the produce market. Try a bowl of piping hot beef, chicken or vegetarian pho, house-made banh mi, spring rolls, or wings while dining inside this renovated industrial building formerly known as ABC Welding & Repair shop.
Butchertown Pizza Hall
With a recipe originating from home kitchens, Butchertown Pizza Hall offers a delightfully thin and crispy crust as well as fluffy garlic knots, delicious salads, subs, and wings. Their menu features unique pizzas, such as the “Fun Guy” topped with sauteed mushrooms, balsamic onions, mozzarella, goat cheese, fresh thyme, oregano, cracked black pepper, and truffle oil on a roasted garlic butter base. Pair your pie with a beer from their impressive craft selection.
Cabel Street Bar
In true speakeasy fashion, this bar is the quintessential hidden gem. Located above Butchertown Pizza, Cabel Street Bar will transport you back in time with funky vintage décor and exposed brick walls complemented by delicious craft cocktail creations.
Let’s talk doughnuts — build your own doughnuts to be exact. That’s what you’ll find at Hi-Five, a “friendly hands-on celebration of sweet indulgence and local pride.” Enjoy one of their staple doughnuts like the Kentucky Fried Buttermilk Chicken doughnut, or the Bourbon Caramel with Bacon, or build your own creation by choosing from their array of toppings.
Big Al’s Beeritaville
With delicious, classic bar food perfect for game day or chilling out with friends on Friday night, Big Al’s Beeritaville is the place to be. Enjoy a basket of fried pickles followed by a burger with onion rings on the patio or gather a group of friends for a cornhole or horseshoe tournament.
Sergio’s World of Beers
If you consider yourself a connoisseur of beers, then you have to check out Sergio’s World of Beers. Their list of over 1,000 beers from around the world offers a unique opportunity to try something new and different — something you may have never seen before. While you’re there, take a seat at the bar and give a few of their menu items a try.
Copper and Kings & ALEX&DER
Copper & Kings creates “American brandy influenced by American whiskey and American music.” They utilize American copper pot stills for distillation and bourbon barrels for aging to develop a delicious flavor and aroma with a velvety finish. Book a tour at copperandkings.com to learn about the craft of American Brandy. While you’re there, check out ALEX&DER, Copper and Kings’ elevated bar featuring an array of classic cocktails, several different takes on an Old Fashioned, and a variety of original cocktails.
A mid-century modern feel paired with great live music and an impressive bar, Odeon is the perfect place to chill with friends after a long day at work or to ring in the weekend. Open 4 p.m. to 4 a.m. seven days per week, check out this timeless spot located in the heart of Butchertown for your next night out.
The Butchertown Social
Known as “Louisville’s Public House,” The Butchertown Social offers a twist on classics with dishes like bacon-wrapped dates, Social Dog hot dogs served on a pretzel bun, and fried French toast sticks. Pair your meal with a delicious craft cocktail, beer, or wine while you enjoy a set from a local musician or a round of trivia with friends.
Red Hot Roasters
Start your day exploring Butchertown with a cup of joe and fresh-baked goods from Red Hot Roasters. Located just as you enter the neighborhood and steps from several other spots on this list, it’s the perfect place to begin your adventure.
International Tap House
A cold beer is a perfect way to relax after taking in the historic sites of Butchertown. Stop by International Tap House, conveniently located in the Main & Clay Luxury Apartment Complex to try one of their close to 300 drafts, canned, and bottled craft beer options. Relax on their fun patio featuring pig paintings, a nod to its location, and explore their rotating menu.
Apocalypse Brew Works
Speaking of beer, be sure to check out a local favorite with a mission of sustainability – Apocalypse Brew Works. Their small-batch craft beer is brewed using solar-heated water in a building made up of recycled objects and equipment. While they’re only open Friday through Sunday, Apocalypse offers an array of options from cream ales to IPAs and specialties like the Fallout Dust featuring a unique peppercorn flavor.
While you may find their food truck anywhere around the city, Lexi Lu’s calls Butchertown home with a catering company located on Adams Street. Track them down for a helping of “grassroots cooking” featuring dishes like the Lexi’s Smashburger made with secret spices, house-made garlic pepper mayo, and veggies served on an onion bun, or any variety of tacos and quesadillas in flavors like buffalo, spicy Asian, teriyaki, veggie, and more.
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Shop & Play
Work the Metal & Work the Metal Wine Bar
Whether you’re looking for a unique gift, your next piece of statement jewelry, an eye-catching piece of home decor, a sassy dress for your next event, or just feel like browsing, Work the Metal is the place to be. Located inside Butchertown Market and offering an ever-changing, vast inventory, you are sure to find exactly what you’re looking for (and probably several things you don’t). While you’re shopping, stop by the Work the Metal Wine Bar for a glass of prosecco, or gather your girlfriends for lunch before perusing the store. Did we mention they also carry a ton of local brands like Welpdale Chocolates, goodies from Paul’s Fruit Market, and even feature books by local authors?
Moss Hill Bath and Body
Located in Butchertown Market and inside Work the Metal, Moss Hill offers a variety of hand-made products including soaps, lotions, bath and massage oils, and candles. Pamper yourself with their variety of scents like the signature Kentucky Girl with hints of magnolia and mandarin orange, the Bathe in Bourbon featuring bourbon and vanilla scents, or more traditional varieties like lavender or fresh melon.
Cellar Door Chocolates
Also located in Work the Metal, Cellar Door has been serving up gourmet chocolate in Louisville for more than 10 years. In 2010, the company opened this location as its first retail shop, and nine years later they reside in Butchertown. Offering a variety of truffles, bourbon buttercreams, barks, toffees, and caramels, Cellar Door allows you to build your very own box of chocolates perfectly catered to you.
Bourbon Barrel Foods
If you’re looking for a unique addition to your next culinary masterpiece or an ingredient to amp up your next cocktail, stop by Bourbon Barrel Foods in Butchertown Market. BBF offers a unique array of products all produced using bourbon barrels to infuse flavor. Choose from handcrafted soy sauces, bourbon smoked spices and sweeteners, barrel ages sauces, cocktail and culinary ingredients featuring Old Forester and Woodford Reserve, and more.
Louisville’s hottest dance floor, PLAY Louisville is a fun place for a night out with friends. Open Wednesday through Saturday, 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., shows at PLAY feature the cast of Play Mates and the best dance music.
High-quality leather goods are just a few steps away at Thoroughbred Leather, a division of Tasman Industries. Choose from five different leather types to develop a custom creation of pretty much any kind. They’ll help you create anything from a new saddle to a tote bag to a notebook and anything in between for a minimum order price.
Stag + Doe
A home decor paradise, Stag + Doe offers a perfect mix of modern and boho chic items from statement furniture pieces like side tables and occasional chairs, to fun accent pieces like bold mirrors, baskets, light fixtures and more. One of their goals is to “please the wallet without sacrificing style.”
With a mantra of “everyone equal — all the time,” this LGBTQ+ Boutique and Gift Shop offers an array of witty and clever t-shirts representing cities all over the South, plus PRIDE flags and fans. While you’re browsing LOUaBULL, check out their variety of fun knick-knacks like coffee mugs, tea towels, candles, greeting cards and more.
Forme Millinery Hat Shop
At Forme Millinery Hat Shop, owner Jenny Pfanenstiel goes above and beyond to create gorgeous, intricate and expertly crafted hats for every season and occasion. Using millinery, “the art of molding straw and wool over wooden hat forms,” Jenny works with clients to create their ideal hat. Try various styles, colors, embellishments and more, picking each element for a complete look.
Clayton & Crume
Located just behind the “Kentucky is for Makers” garage door on Main Street, you’ll find Clayton & Crume, a business founded by college buddies Clay and Tyler with the goal of creating leather goods to last a lifetime. Check out their inventory of handmade leather goods from bourbon-themed coasters to belts representing your favorite college team and tote bags perfect for transitioning from work to play. Plus they offer custom options and workshops to make your own creation.
Liz and Roo
If you have a little one on the way, you may want to check out Liz and Roo for all of your baby bedding needs. Stop by their Butchertown showroom to explore their vast inventory in various colors, themes, and styles, or shop online and have it shipped right to your door. While you’re browsing their website, hop over to their sister store, American Made Dorm and Home’s website, and shop for bedding for the whole family. Both companies are locally owned, and all products are made in the USA.
Looking for an exciting, daring activity for your next night out? Gather your friends and test your axe-throwing skills at Flying Axes. While you take each other on in axe-to-axe, enjoy a beer from their bar and compete to get the first bullseye. They even offer leagues if you really want to refine your skills.
Bluebird Ink Beautique
Specializing in permanent makeup, microblading, and restorative tattoos, Bluebird Ink Beautique works with clients to create a personalized experience resulting in a tattoo perfectly crafted for them. Aside from permanent makeup and microblading, they work with breast cancer survivors creating 3-D mastectomy tattoos beginning with a 100% free online consultation and working through the process step-by-step.
What started as a one-man operation from the owner David’s apartment more than 20 years ago, Magnolia’s Florist has become one of Louisville’s most beloved floral shops. David can take your vision, color palette, and flower choices to create gorgeous arrangements for any occasion. Some of his most notable clients include YUM!, The Galt House and Crowne Plaza, LG&E, and the Barnstable Brown Derby Event.
Lettersong Calligraphy Studio and Gallery
Try your hand at hand-lettering with Lettersong Calligraphy Studio and Gallery. Offering workshops and classes, serving as an event venue, and showcasing the work of local artists and songwriters, Lettersong is a truly unique concept located in the heart of Butchertown.
Quartermaster Costume Rentals
Whether you’re looking for a Halloween costume, the perfect ensemble for an upcoming themed party, or just want to browse for fun, Quartermaster offers a fantastic selection. Work with the friendly owners to create the exact look you’re going for.
Spend part of your day in Butchertown taking in an art show at Pyro. Featuring different shows throughout the year, explore various artistic styles and even purchase your favorite piece supporting a local artist.
For the past 18 years, Hyland Glass has been crafting gorgeous blown glass creations like sculptures, suspended installations, ornaments, light fixtures, dining and barware, and more. Hyland Glass artwork can be found across the country with some of the most notable being the LaGuardia Airport Suspended Sculpture in Delta Terminal C and several pieces featured in Saks Fifth Avenue.
Excel Shop Furniture Restoration
Have a piece of furniture you love, but it’s in a bit of distress? Excel Shop can help. With a facility created specifically for furniture restoration, visit their showroom to talk about your piece, choose new finishes, and trust that they will turn out a like-new piece you’re sure to enjoy for years to come.
Thomas Edison House
Said to have been the home of Thomas Edison when he lived in Louisville in the 1800s, this historic shotgun house is worth stopping by during your Butchertown adventure. Learn about Thomas Edison’s life and the many inventions he created in his time.
Dave Armstrong Extreme Park
Grab your helmet, pads and board, blades, or bike to test your skills at Dave Armstrong Extreme Park. Featuring a 24-foot full pipe and 40,000 square feet of area to shred, you’re sure to get your adrenaline pumping at one of the nation’s best skate parks.
MA Hadley Pottery Studio
Chances are if you’re from Louisville you’ve seen a piece of Hadley pottery in your time. The iconic hand-painted creations were first produced by Mary Alice Hadley. Visit the historic Hadley Pottery Factory on Story Avenue to see where it all began and pick out your very own piece from their vast inventory of original patterns and designs.
Get fit and have fun at the same time. Suspend Louisville specializes in aerial arts and cirque fitness, which target the improvement of strength and flexibility while developing focus and balance. Offering classes for people of all ages, this unique fitness facility allows you to explore an artform you may have only ever seen on stage. Master the art for yourself with classes like silks, trapeze, aerial hoop, and juggling taught by the skilled Suspend instructors.
Reach your fitness goals and gain a support system in the process. Butchertown Crossfit is dedicated to helping you live your best, healthiest life through dynamic classes, personal training sessions, and open gym during business hours, all in their state-of-the-art 8,000-square-foot facility.
Though their main location is in Germantown, Flex Appeal offers group fitness, boot camp, yoga, TRX, and Barre classes at their Butchertown location. With a focus on personalized fitness tailored to your specific needs, Flex Appeal offers personal training, group fitness, boot camp classes and nutrition planning. Stop in for a free initial consultation.
CrossFit The Ville
Focused on classic fitness methods, CrossFit The Ville deploys “old-school,” yet effective tools like barbells, dumbbells, rowers, kettlebells, wall balls, rings, pull-up bars, and more to help you reach your fitness goals. Join their team of skilled coaches to begin your CrossFit journey with their Elements onboarding class.
Whether you’re looking for a complete pilates experience focused on muscle strength and toning, a Swedish massage, or an art gallery experience, Downtown Pilates offers just that. This top-rated studio works with a wide variety of people and offers private and small group Pilates sessions.
Stay a While
Linden Hill Bed and Breakfast
Located in one of the oldest homes in Louisville, this beautifully renovated bed and breakfast dates back to 1796. Beautiful fireplaces, hardwood floors, chandeliers, antique furniture, and a large renovated kitchen featuring a wooden island and subway tile creates the perfectly quaint bed and breakfast vibe. Proximity to downtown and local shops in Butchertown and NuLu make it the perfect place for a weekend getaway in The Ville.
Guesthouse on Story
A historic building with modern luxury within walking distance of Butchertown and NuLu favorites, Guesthouse on Story is the perfect location for a girls getaway, family reunion, or a weekend away with your special someone. Eclectic decor reflective of its bourbon country roots and an impressive collection of vinyl records with a turntable in each room makes for a truly unique stay.
Louisville City FC Stadium
The Boys in Purple are headed to Butchertown! The United Soccer League championship-winning team, Louisville City FC, will soon call the historic neighborhood home with the construction of their very own stadium set to open in March 2020.
Recently it was announced that a brand new brewery concept will take over the old Dryden Provisions Company building at 1016 E. Washington Street. Named after the nonprofit founded by the owners, the brewery will complement its mission to build a compassionate community focused on doing good. Plans are set for the facility to feature a beer garden, indoor space, or rooftop deck. Look for their doors to open in Spring 2020.
Hearth on Melwood
The chefs who brought you Chik’n & Mi are introducing a new restaurant concept to the Butchertown neighborhood: Hearth on Mellwood. Located in the former Bistro 1860, the rotating menu will feature dishes designed for sharing that showcase local produce and fresh seafood. Take in the beautiful decor while enjoying a drink at the fully stocked bar.
Enjoy all that’s new in Butchertown!
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