With five breweries and an uncountable number of restaurants and pubs, there are a lot of places to get a beer in Louisville. However, the following ten restaurants and bars offer an unparalleled selection of beers to satisfy any palate.
Baxter Avenue Station is the real deal. The food is delicious, the portions are generous, and the dining environment is pleasing and energetic. The ability to order beer and wine with your meal is also nice, as the flavors of the food are often accentuated by a nice wine or light, wheat beer. Even if you're out more for a drink than a meal, Baxter Station is still a great place to go – the bar in the front caters to the restaurant's beer and wine connoisseurs while the back and deck are perfect for diners.
After a brief closure in late 2008 and early 2009, Browning's Brewery was reopened by Anoosh Shariat, the former chef of the restaurant. Located at Louisville Slugger Field, Browning's is a great place to hang out before and after a Louisville Bats game, but its home-brewed beer and great menu also make it an awesome hangout even when baseball season is over.
Cumberland Brews, as is evidenced by its name, is a bar and brewery with delicious and interesting beer choices that can't be found anywhere else in Louisville. It also has a fantastic location – if you're sitting outside it's almost a guarantee that you'll see someone you know. If you're looking for a quiet place to drink and talk, you'll want to check out the top floor where the light music sets the tone for an intimate and relaxed evening.
Flanagan's has one of the largest selections of bottled beer in Louisville and the best fries in town. During the week, Flannigan's is a laid-back and quiet place to spend an evening having conversation with friends or getting to know someone better. On the weekend, however, dance music blasts through the speakers and you can find people dancing and drinking in areas of the bar that you might have never known existed if you'd only ever been there during the week. Servers during all hours of the night mean that you can avoid standing at the bar for the most part, and a fenced-in outside area is a lovely place for drinks on warm summer nights.
Hideaway Saloon is characterized by its claim to be a hidden treasure among the sprawling stylishness of Bardstown Road – the hidden treasure at Hideaway is that the bar is anything but a treasure. With narrow hallways, creaky stairs, and pool tables placed on barely-even floors, Hideaway Saloon embodies the definition of a hole-in-the-wall perfectly. However, there is a great selection of beer behind the bar and the prices are really reasonable. There's occasionally a live band and sometimes a cover, but these things just seem to happen whenever they happen as opposed to happening with any regularity.
A trip to Rich O's always starts at the blackboard. The blackboard is where the draft beer selections are listed. On any given day, the New Albanian Brewing Company restaurants are serving at least 25 different worldly draft beers as well as the beer brewed in-house. In addition to the draft and home-brewed beer choices, Rich O's and Sportstime both also have a bottled beer menu that features more than 250 beer, cider, and mead choices from all over the world. Bottled beer runs from as low as $2.25 to as much as $39.75. Draft beer is also served by the pitcher.
The NachbarThe Nachbar is one of those Germantown bars that has evolved into a popular hangout among the young professionals of the neighborhood, UofL students, and first-time homeowners that live, work, and study close to Germantown. Cheap prices on beer and cocktails as well as a great deck bar make Nachbar a great low-key place to get a good beer in Louisville.
ZA's Pizza Pub is a laid-back restaurant on Bardstown Road in the Highlands. The pizza at ZA's is so good that even the healthy pizza is fantastic, and it's even better when paired with a beer from ZA's large selection. If you were a fan of getting pizza and beer at Pizza Hut back when it was more of a restaurant than a fast food joint, you'll love sharing pizza and beer with your friends at ZA's.