Despite Its Name, Main Street Tavern Doesn’t Serve “Bar Food.”

Don’t confuse the fare at Main Street Tavern with “bar food.” Even the burgers and meatloaf here are a religious experience. The Big Bubba Burger is Kentucky beef, American cheese, fried green tomatoes, coleslaw, and K-Dogg’s Fantastic Sauce (think of it as the condiment that just kicked ketchup’s butt) that they somehow fit on a bun without having to give it its own zip code. And the big favorite here is the bacon-wrapped meatloaf on top of mashed potatoes with a side of green beans and tomato jam. While they’re served in a vintage bar with dark wood walls and a spacious patio, they’re definitely not bar food.

Photograph by Wes Batoclette

Chef Bill Lynch (a.k.a. “The Rev”) came up from Louisville to give the place known as Mulligan’s back its original name, first tacked on the building in 1914. He also brought with him some mighty fine cooking with new twists on Kentucky’s culinary tradition.

I highly recommend you come here for Sunday brunch. Bring friends and share, because you won’t be able to decide on any one thing. Like Kentucky Hot Browns? Not once you’ve had the Louisville Slugger: a Hot Brown with the dull turkey replaced by fried chicken and Angel Biscuits instead of plain bread. Their shrimp and grits combines sautéed shrimp, tomatoes, peppers, and onions and gets piled onto creamy Parmesan cheese, Kentucky-made Weisenberger grits and house-cured Tasso ham with red-eye gravy poured on top. Even average old waffles get made special here with locally brewed Braxton Storm Cream Ale for extra fluff. Many just look at the brunch menu here and then go home full. Glory, glory, hallelujah.


Main Street Tavern, 701 Main St., Covington, (859) 815-8236, mainsttaverncov.com.

Dinner and late night Mon–Sat, brunch Sun.

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