Food and Fun! Great local family-friendly restaurants around Louisville
I’ll admit I am a total Foodie. I love this area for its local flare and variety. As a Nanny, I get all giddy
when I can combine my two loves. Food and Fun! Fun for kids, that is. Even something as simple
as having lunch can be fun and memorable. You just have to get creative, but you don’t have to look
beyond your local resources. The Louisville area has such a wide variety of Family Fun filled options year
round to choose from. Not to mention supporting your local economy is always a FabuLOUs idea. Here
is a list I have created of what I will refer to as my “Totally Kiddo Approved Hot Spots for Lunch”, in no
1. Derby Dinner Playhouse: The title is a little deceiving. This place is not just for Dinner….no
no no! To be more specific it should be called the Derby Brunch Lunch AND Dinner Playhouse.
Their Children’s Theatre puts on four great shows a year and they season stretches from
October to June. Have a great buffet style feast and sit down to kid friendly theatre that is sure
to entertain the antsiest of pants.
2. Fuji’s Japanese Steakhouse: This has to be one of my personal favorites. My kids and I frequent
this local establishment so much that we are all on a first name basis and I rarely have to
actually place an order. My kids absolutely beg to go. All four of them. If you know kids, you
know getting them to collectively agree on anything; especially food is a major task. Not only do
they get a fun show with a staff that caters so patiently and fondly to children, but your kids are
eating vegetables at LUNCH! WHAT?!? I know….awesome. I, on the other hand get to enjoy
their delicious sushi. I don’t know about you, but sushi just makes me feel better about life in
general. 😉 They will also allow you to split the portions for the little ones. Although my big kids
(7 and 9) have definitely graduated to the full portion. Love love love Fuji’s and you will too.
3. Mike Linnigs: This is one of our favorite spots for warm weather. This is a great spot on the
river to enjoy some seafood fare among other things on their expansive menu. The kids love the
outdoor seating where they are free to run around like crazy people and play on the playground
that is centered within the picnic table style outdoor seating. They will always be in good
company. Although this place is out on its own away from town, it is a happening family spot.
After lunch we walk out to the river and take a stroll. It’s always helpful to get up and walk
around after scarfing down a delicious fried fish sandwich.
4. Mrs. Potter’s Coffee Lounge and Café: This is a relatively new addition to the downtown scene.
There are a few things I would like to highlight about this fun spot. One of my favorite things
about Mrs. Potter’s is that it’s conveniently located across the street from The Kentucky Science
Center and a hop and skip down the sidewalk to 21c. My little ones were beside themselves
with happiness the day we started at the Science Center, popped in to Mrs. Potter’s for lunch
and trailed over 21c for a quick tour of their interactive gallery installations. The second thing
I would like to highlight is the delicious food. I was so pleased with the yummy options on
the menu. The kids shared a peanut butter sandwich with house jam. The best part was the
tableside Smores. It was a gooey mess (Bring the wet wipes), but totally worth it.
5. Joe Huber’s: Yes, Starlight Indiana is a bit of a drive, but there are few better ways to spend a
beautiful day than experiencing life on a farm with your little one. Pet some goats pick some
strawberries and pull up to the lunch table for some home cooking. You won’t be sorry!
6. The Belle of Louisville: Here they offer a great lunch experience. A lunch on the Belle would
probably most appreciated by the bigger kids that are stable enough to roam around freely and
enjoy the view. From 12-2 on selected dates, this cruise promises to fill you and your little ones
up buffet style while touring the Ohio River steamboat style.
7. King Fish: More specifically, King Fish located on Zorn Ave, right on the river. My kids and I
will grab a bite in the restaurant or grab it to go from the carry-out area and dine around the
playground out back. It’s always a bonus when they have room to run around and carry on.
Keeping one them in a seat for more than 15 minutes is an accomplishment. When I don’t have
to spend all my attention keeping them from acting like complete monkeys, it is a definitely
bonus. If you are fortunate enough to have a boat, pull up to the docks for a bite.
8. Wild Eggs: This is one of our frequent stops. My kids would have pancakes for every meal,
so breakfast for lunch is always a treat. There’s no big crazy entertaining experience here.
However, if you’re pressed for time and you want to make lunch special and super delish, this is
the place. My kids are always asking to go back. The super friendly staff always goes above and
beyond to bring out their food fast and to keep them engaged with banter. I can only guess the
staff is a big part of what makes this place to kid friendly. Just an added tip: Get the Calamity
Katy. It’s beyond words.
9. Derby Café: Last, but not least, this is the place to go for a true Derby experience. Enjoy a day at
the famous Derby Museum at Churchill Downs and settle in to lunch at the cozy little café in the
back. We enjoyed a great lunch with great service. The best part was waiting for our meal after
we ordered (Which is usually the worst part). The staff suggested we go right out the back door
to the barn that housed the resident retired horse and mini horse of Churchill Downs. They
were happy to see the kids and entertained them until our food arrived. They still talk about
that as one of their favorite days and isn’t that what it’s all about?
Happy Lunching! Make it local and make it FabuLOUs!
By guest contributor: Whitney