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Louisville, KY Guide to Late-Night Food and Dining

Fish fries in Louisville have been ongoing for over a century.  This fish fry is actually near Oldham County and depicts the Legionnaire's Club Post 39 circa 1940.
Fish fries in Louisville have been ongoing for over a century. This fish fry is actually near Oldham County and depicts the Legionnaire's Club Post 39 circa 1940.

Are you looking for something to eat in Louisville, Kentucky, after midnight? Louisville is typically up late because of the weather and bars. Since bars are open until 4:00 AM, the nightlife follows. Plus, it is often too hot and humid in the summer to move a muscle until after the sun goes down. Furthermore, due to the bowl-shaped effect of the Ohio River Valley, this means pollen counts are high during the day from April until November. However, if you are interested in eating a full meal after midnight, Louisville has plenty of options. All of the times in the entries listed below are based on online sources such as Yelp and Facebook pages.

Corporate Louisville fast food or diners open 24-hours

When you are traveling, it can be a real task to find a place that is open 24-hours a day. In Louisville, it is common for many locally-owned restaurants to close between 10:00 AM and 3:00 AM. If you are driving through the area and want to eat somewhere after 3:00 AM on a weekday and want a familiar menu, your best choices are corporate fast food or diner restaurants. Topping the list in Louisville are Denny's, IHOP, Steak and Shake, and Waffle House. When all else fails, there are several grocery stores with delis open 24-hours such as Wal-Mart, Kroger, and Meijer.

Locally-owned fast food/diners open late in Louisville

Louisville also has several "always open" or 24-hour locally-owned restaurants in Louisville. At the top of the list is Big Boy (formerly Juanita's Burger Boy) in Old Louisville. The other big favorite for the 24-hour crowd is Barbara Lee's Kitchen. Many other local fast food restaurants have late hours on the weekends, as well -- depending on the location. For example, the local fried chicken restaurant Indi's on Broadway is open until 5:00 AM on Friday and Saturday nights, but closes at 2:00 AM the rest of the week. Chicken King on Broadway is also traditionally open late on Friday until 4:00 AM, but closes at 2:00 AM on Saturday, and midnight the rest of the week.

Local Louisville late-night restaurants with more than burgers or diner food

Louisville certainly has plenty of fast food and diner menus available after dark. Alternatively, there are several full-service restaurants that are open until or after midnight. For upscale restaurants that serve wine and/or drinks, try El Camino, Rye, Ramsi's or the Bristol. For Italian, try Sicilian Pizza and Pasta, Papalinos Pizza, Pizza Donisi, and Spinelli's. For a combination of everything, including the hookah pipe, Café 360 is the place to be. Definitely a late-night Louisville legend, La Bamba Mexican Restaurant on Bardstown Road is packed with tourists until 3:30 AM intrigued by their claims to have, "Burritos as Big As Your Head."

Louisville bars that serve food

Typically, most Louisville bars do not serve food. Nevertheless, there are several exceptions. For instance, the Back Door, Hammerheads, and the Hilltop Tavern all have a kitchen that serves food late. While many of these bars have a few vegetarian options, the Hilltop Tavern will allow you to replace any burger with a veggie burger. Some of these bars also choose to close the kitchen early during the week if business is slow.

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