Can we just get rid of the whole Colonel Sanders thing? I know he’s a Kentucky staple, but that dude hasn’t made good chicken in at least 30 years! Where is all the good fried chicken?!?
Although it’s technically a chain (with locations in Cincinnati, Indianapolis, and Columbus) and it’s lacking that old time Kentucky tradition of paintings of the Colonel in its lobby, The Eagle on Bardstown Road offers an excellent dining experience, especially if you’re looking to beat the heat. I don’t exactly escape the Louisville humidity with fried chicken, but The Eagle serves refreshing fresh squeezed lemonade. If you’re smart like me, you ask them to put vodka in it. They also have a fantastic selection of beers, including my next favorite heat-beater, Rhinegeist Bubbles on tap.
Fantastic drinks aside, The Eagle’s version of soul food is absolutely spectacular. My wife and I tried as much as we could handle from the menu and we were blown away by every bite. Southern greens and artichoke dip, Collards, Sweet potato crock (with marshmallows), biscuits with honey butter, and half of a chicken. Each bite was more thrilling than the last. To be honest, we ate way too much food but we couldn’t stop!
The most incredible thing about The Eagle in Louisville was the service. I’ve never tried The Eagle in Cincinnati because anytime you go it’s so packed people are practically falling out of the door, but we showed up to the Louisville location at 6:00pm on Saturday and walked right up to the bar. Then we ordered our dip. When it was brought to us I told the guy it wasn’t ours because it happened so fast. The rest of the meal came nearly as fast but the waiter warned me the second time with a cheerful “Hey I’m back again!”
Did I mention how good the fried chicken is? Maybe it doesn’t come in a bucket and it doesn’t bring back memories of when America was (according to some) great, but damn it’s sweet, succulent, and delicious.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Jake Hellman is absolutely, positively not a food critic. Having said that, he really, really loves food, and he really appreciates Louisville’s effervescent independent restaurant scene which is why we have decided to embark on a weekly series of posts documenting a singular item from a particular menu from one of many local spots. We’re calling this series “Food For Fun” because, well, I don’t know. It’s a dumb name, but you’ll get over it.