#LocalFoodieFriday: Biscuit Belly
A few weeks ago, my husband and I had our brunch plans thwarted. I don’t remember how, I don’t remember why – I just remember that I was hungry, tired, and just a little bit cranky. I begged my husband not to choose a chain place out of convenience; we’d been eating a lot of fast food out of necessity recently, and I was sick of not enjoying what I was putting in my body. Finally, he remembered a place that just opened in the NuLu neighborhood: Biscuit Belly. My simple Southern self perks up at the mention of anything related to biscuits, so I agreed immediately.
To be honest, I almost backed out when I saw the line. This was a hot new spot, and I was too hungry to handle a long wait. But we stuck it out and were so thankful to find that the line to order moved quickly! While we waited, we checked out some of the awesome things they had for sale, including signed copies of Edward Lee’s book “Buttermilk Graffiti.” If you don’t recognize the name, he’s the celebrity chef behind local restaurants 610 Magnolia, Milkwood, and Whiskey Dry. He also has a youth culinary training program in Smoketown and founded The LEE Initiative that aims to understand problems with diversity in the restaurant industry and address them. When I saw that book, I knew I was in a place that understood good food.
The menu at Biscuit Belly is so tempting. Dangerously so, even. If I let myself, I could get all of my daily calories in at brunch, while spending myself bankrupt and enjoying every. Single. Last. Bite. As the name suggests, much of the menu is dedicated to biscuit sandwiches. Fried chicken, pork belly, braised greens, fried green tomatoes, pimento cheese – everything that sets a Southerner’s heart a-flutter is represented. But the food extends even beyond that, including praline beignets and corn dogs battered with pancake batter. It’s just food that’s designed to make you put down your fork after the first bite and say “DAMN that’s good!” And to accompany your feast, they have an insane drink menu. If I was feeling boozy I would’ve had the Kentucky Coffee (coffee with bourbon, bourbon cream, and chocolate porter whipped cream). As it was, I couldn’t pass up the cold brew float, which was just as delicious as it sounds and is turning me into an affogato aficionado.
If you’re wondering which way to go in a menu full of tempting choices, I definitely suggest that you order the Mama’s Boy. This biscuit sandwich has fried chicken, pimento cheese, pickles, fried green tomatoes – everything you need to fall in love. It’s enough to make anyone want to marry a Southern belle or beau in the hopes of having food like this for the rest of their lives. (Sorry gentlemen; I’m taken, and I shamefully have never even fried a chicken, so I just let the good people at Biscuit Belly take care of that instead.) Even the sides are phenomenal! My husband is a vegetarian, so he opted for a simple combo of biscuit, egg, and hash browns so he could make his own sandwich. He still raves about the flavor of it, and he didn’t even need to add any of the delicious hot sauce from Hoff Sauce that they have available at the table! On our next trip back, I’m determined to try some of the starters and even more of the great biscuit sandwich options.
The NuLu area isn’t a stranger to new, trendy businesses. There’s so many quality offerings in one small revitalized chunk of town, that it can be hard to choose who to give your business to on any given day. But it never fails to excite me when I discover something new, and Biscuit Belly is the place that has hyped me up the most in recent memory. I love Southern cooking, and I love it even more when it’s done well. Whether you’re looking for comfort food or trying to show a visitor what Louisville is all about, I recommend stopping by. Your stomach and your community will thank you for supporting local businesses that know what they’re doing. If you see me there for brunch one weekend, don’t mind me; I’ll be the guy with more plates in front of him than one person should rightfully have, with a cold brew float handy to get me through it all!
Biscuit Belly is located at 900 E Main St. and is open every day from 7:30-3.