Permanently Closed - Lilly's Bistro

4.6
1110 Reviews
$31 to $50
American

About

This restaurant is permanently closed. For a casual yet upscale dining experience, Lilly’s Bistro in the historic Highland Neighborhood exudes warmth and style. Fresh and seasonal ingredients inspire our New American Cuisine with an international flair from our local farmers. As a neighborhood bistro we encourage guests to enjoy a variety of small and large plates from our sustainable-farmed menu. Our award wining wine list is the perfect compliment to the food.
What 1110 people are sayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Quiet
89% of people would recommend it to a friend
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foodforthought1
Louisville
1 review
Dined on March 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food and service were great.

SJ
vipSarahJ414
Milwaukee
12 reviews
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

If you're considering going to Lily's Bistro, just do it! The food is outstanding and the service is impeccable. We had a large party, so we shared a number of appetizers. The brussel sprouts are outstanding! Lily's Board (charcuterie) could be a delicious meal. We can't wait to come back to Louisville so that we can visit Lily's Bistro again.

E
Eloise
Louisville
6 reviews
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall3food3service5ambience3

I was here 10 years ago and loved it, hence my return when I came back into town. Very disappointed on a number of levels. The menu was limited as opposed to focused. When I am out for dinner at a nice restaurant, seriously considering the burger as an entree is an indicator that I am disappointed by choices....despite having a generous and open-minded palette. The execution was amateurish with a cauliflower gratin that was cold in the middle and a under-seasoned fried chicken thigh that had me reaching for the salt - a rarity for me - only to discover the plastic spoon in the salt dish. That spoon represented how far Lilly’s has fallen from an elegantly casually experience, to a bar that serves mediocre food. So sad.

TB
TBPlayer
New York Area
46 reviews
Dined on March 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of our favorite places for literally decades. Always reliable. Menu hits a happy medium between comfortable/familiar and adventurous. Service likewise hits the right balance between friendly and formal.

LR
LesleyR
Louisville
5 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Vegetarian meal was the best I’ve ever eaten. Service was outstanding! Lilly’s has been in business for a very long time & remains top shelf!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I have been to Lilly’s in the past.
My wife and I were on vacation and I wanted to introduce her to this fabulous establishment.
She absolutely loved it!
A return will most definitely take place!

m
vipmsfoodie
Louisville
25 reviews
Dined on March 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always special!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Louisville
2 reviews
Dined on February 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love Lilly’s and the Carys’ are wonderful hosts.

BD
BrianD
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing food , service and atmosphere.

G
Gapperjody
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always a great dining experience!

AO
AnnaO
1 review
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lilly’s Bistro is always a treat and never disappoints. One of my favorite restaurant in Louisville, hands down.

JM
JayM
1 review
Dined on February 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Fabulous dinner. Duck was divine and the halibut excellent. With the fish, I ordered simply the house white wine and it was a very nice vintage which I enjoyed very much.

I was thinking today about using Japanese potatoes as an underlayer for beef dishes or simply as "sides". These are steamed first, then gently mashed if required. My wife makes these "as is" and they are delicious with a little butter and ground black pepper. I'm thinking that in the hands of a classic chef like Cathy, these could be made truly magic.

AT
AndrewT
Louisville
7 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Three couples gathered at Lilly’s to visit together catch up on happenings. Kathy’s menu was as tempting and interesting as usual and she was her gracious self in greeting diners. After a superb gimlet prepared by the bar, my spouse and I both opted for the halibut special of that evening. Delicious down to the last bite. Similar enjoyment from our companions in their choices. Ms. Cary and the staff at Lilly’s never disappoint.

1
vip1790
Louisville
10 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was delicious as usual. Great service and ambiance.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Nashville
5 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were in Louisville to celebrate Valentine’s Day and found Lilly’s when I searched for “Best Farm to Table “ in Louisville. Lilly’s has been farm to table before anyone knew what that meant! We loved every course ! And all the bread and desserts are made in house too! My husband is went to culinary school so finding a restaurant that impresses him is sometimes hard to do! He loved all the food & the impressive wine list! And Lilly’s is casual elegance! You don’t have to dress up or be a foodie to enjoy! Amazing service and high quality! We will make a trip back just to eat here again! Highly recommend!

R
Returnomatic
Nashville
9 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Second visit for us and plan on many more. Excellent

AB
AndrewB
Louisville
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall2food3service2ambience3

I’ve been here before and enjoyed it. However, this was a poor experience as a whole. The food was extremely bland and definitely not worth the $200 receipt. The service was slow and our waiter was forgetful and yet I was forced into a 20% tip. Yeah, I won’t be back. This was absolutely a waste of money.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Louisville
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Pork tacos were awesome! Dining room was a little crowded but typical for Valentines Day dinner.

CM
vipCarolynM
Louisville
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall2food2service5ambience4

We arrived and were seated promptly. The restaurant has a very eclectic display of art. Tables are fairly close to each other and it was very busy, but the atmosphere was still pleasant.

Service was efficient throughout the night and our server was friendly. The problem was the food, that appeared to be due to both cutting corners on cost and on preparation.
Lilly’s offered a limited three-course meal for Valentines Day for $65 ea (did not include beverages or dessert.) My husband ordered the Bibb and Brie salad, pork carnitas taco and the shrimp. I ordered the lobster bisque, seafood pot pie, and steak roulade.
First course: The salad was a mix sweet, tangy, crunchy and creamy and was very good. The lobster bisque was thin and very stingy with the lobster, but the flavor was good.
Second course: The pork carnitas had a generous serving of tender pork and lots of pineapple salsa, with a nice kick from sriracha aoili. However the pork had Several bits of gristle that were unappetizing. The seafood pot pie was made with a shrimp and scallop filling inside of a puff pastry shell. The shell was flaky and golden brown, and other than being slightly over salted, the filling was creamy and delicious and was definitely the highlight of the evening.
Third course: Two jumbo coconut lime shrimp were served over Red Curry Risotto, with a Pineapple-Coconut Sauce, Thai Basil Slaw, and Lime Crème Fraiche. The shrimp were so dry they were practically inedible. The red curry risotto was not creamy at all. The lime was overwhelming. My husband only ate one of the shrimp and I took one bite.
The steak roulade fared no better. The steak was tough, chewy, well done on the edges and quite literally raw on the inside. The fingerling potatoes and brussel sprouts were good.
My husband and I don’t get to eat a lot at what I would consider fine dining, so you can imagine our disappointment.
We went and got ice cream at Comfy Cow. Delish!

ME
MarkE
Louisville
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Ed was our server and was extremely professional, yet warm and friendly! In spite of the busy Valentine crowd, we never felt rushed and like we were his only table!

FD
vipFineDiner
Louisville
8 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall2food3service1ambience2

We have been dining at Lilly's for over thirty years. Sadly, this was our last visit. The receptionist was pleasant but seated the two of us between a large and loud business group and a large and louder birthday celebration. We had requested a quiet table.

Our waiter was slow in arriving and slower throughout the evening. He made little effort to make us feel welcome. He never looked directly at us but would listen and talk as he glanced everywhere around us -- which was both aggravating and annoying. He did not seem to want to take care of us, perhaps because he was also responsible for the other larger groups.

We waited a long time for our drinks, but they were fine. Bibb salad and fried oyster appetizers were slow to arrive but were the highlight of our meal. Then another long wait for the main courses. My wife had ordered the special halibut but wanted an alternative to the broccolini -- our waiter seemed offended and perplexed by what might be an alternative, but kale was finally agreed to. When the main courses finally appeared, the waiter announced: "Here is your steak!" When I said I ordered veal, the waiter said "You are right" and grabbed the plate and disappeared. He returned after we had finished the overcooked fish, and had waited for some time. He then plopped down the veal and said: "We made you a fresh plate" and scurried off. No apology, no explanation, but a quick offer to give us a free dessert since we had waited so long. We had no chance to even ask for an extra plate, and when sharing the saucy dish, spilled globs of it on the table. We left most of the noodles and sauce, which overpowered the veal, but when we expressed our disappointment with the dish, the waiter seemed uninterested. Neither was he interested in clearing the dishes or wiping the table. Instead, he had to work hard in positioning the dessert menus to avoid the mess on the table. We finally gave up ever getting our credit card back -- the waiter caught us at the door.

TS
TwoSeamers
Louisville
4 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall3food2service3ambience3

Lilly's is a restaurant I had wanted to visit for quite a while and finally convinced my partner to visit last February 13th. What a disappointment. Started with waiting 11 minutes before anyone took our drink order and that was the waiters assistant. While the service was good, it was our first visit and no one asked that question nor took the time to explain items on the menu and there were still periods of long waits during the evening, including eventually asking the floor manager to get our bill. But the food was more disappointing than the service. My check for the evening was $175 including tip which I expected, so my expectations regarding the meal were high.

We started with the pimento cheese wontons which were mostly dough with very little pimento and a "sprinkling" of bacon. Could barely taste the pimento flavor. There was a limited option on salads none of which were of a garden salad variety, which we both enjoy , so we skipped the salads. New York Strips were on the menu at $34. I envisioned a steak along the line of Stoney River or J Alexanders. While tasting good the NY strip was less than six ounces. We generally make two meals out of a $100 plus meal but found ourselves having to order dessert to just feel fulfilled. The Brownie tart was delicious but the Caramel Cake was dry. How can someone with Kathy Cary's reputation have dry cake served in her restaurant.

If I was spending $50 to $60 on dinner everything would have been fine, but when you check exceeds $150 there is an expectation of a dining experience that just wasn't there.

S
Soinha2020
Cleveland
3 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fantastic! Fit for foodies is accurate. Service was great too. Quaint dining room.

6
vip66motorsport
Indiana
185 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

In from out of town. Loved the whole experience. Great service led to fabulous recommendations, that led to amazing dining.


Edward was a delight and always there to enhance the experience.

Strongly recommend a nice quiet lunch on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING THE FULL LITER BOTTLES OF PELLEGRINO!

1
vip1basque
Louisville
17 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall3food2service4ambience4

We had lunch on Saturday with friends. Hadn’t been for few years and loved the service but the food was mediocre.

J
vipJack
Louisville
14 reviews
Dined on January 21, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The pimento cheese wontons (appetizer) were so very good!!! We should have ordered 2 plates.
The service was excellent. The waiter came by at the proper time, was attentive, and most importantly did not interrupt. He picked his appearances to coordinate with our conversations.
The food was fresh and well prepared.
My only problem was that I did not save room for their Caramel Cake. This cake seems to be REAL cake...no mix. Real butter, sugar, eggs, et al. made from scratch (no preservatives). It is almost impossible to a desert this exquisite. I will go back for just the desert, if I have to.

C
Camp560
Louisville
1 review
Dined on January 18, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

It was our first time to eat there, and was recommended by Chef Bob Waggoner. We had taken his cooking class in Charleston and thought we would enjoy Lillies Bistro. Lillies Bistro was wonderful! The food was amazing, the wine list was also. We had an exceptional evening. Will definitely return.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Louisville
4 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

We had a fabulous time celebrating our friends birthday.good and drinks were delishous! We did not look at out bill close enough because the next day we realized they had charged us twice for one piece of cake.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
9 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My wife and I visit Louisville twice a year and have always found it to be an exceptional “food town.” We’ve enjoyed several memorable meals through the years and had always wanted to try Lilly’s but for some reason had never been able to do so. Now, I’m upset that it took us so long.

We had an incredible birthday dinner for my wife! Service was alert but unintrusive. Our appetizers (pimento wontons and fried oysters) were both shareable and delicious. Often, fried foods such as these can be heavy, but these were crispy and light. Then we did something we have never done: we both got the same entree—the Amish fried chicken. And we’re glad we did because neither of us would have wanted to miss it. The chicken thigh sits on a bed of creamy potato salad and braised kale. Somehow it all works. My wife loved the bread pudding for desert, and though I found the caramel cake a bit dry, it’s a small complaint that in no way diminished my enjoyment of a special meal.

EK
EdibleKY
Louisville
8 reviews
Dined on January 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great for a business lunch meeting - good food, good service, quiet.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Louisville
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Food was great. Service was very slow and inattentive.

BB
vipBrentB
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was superb! The owner/chef (Kathy Cary) visited each table - this makes every customer feel special!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My favorite restaurant in Kentucky! The food and service are top notch. It’s closing pains me greatly.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2020
Overall1food1service2ambience3

Slow service early. Improved.as time. Disappointed in food.

R
vipRain
Louisville
8 reviews
Dined on January 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Magnificent, dinner, service, and mixed drinks.
Kathy Cary's Lilly's Bistro is the place to dine.

PE
vipPegEatsOut
Louisville
29 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious New Year's Eve dinner. The lobster bisque and halibut were outstanding!

DO
vipDiningOutKid
Louisville
44 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

A New Years Eve dinner. Never had a bad meal at Lilly’s. Food is always prepared to perfection from start to finish. A little loud for my aging ears. But then..... it’s New Years Eve:-)

RS
RobertS
Washington DC
17 reviews
Dined on December 21, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience4

We arrived early for a 6:00 dinner reservation to celebrate my Mother-in-law's 85th Birthday. The food was great and the menu varied enough for every taste. But Birthday's are meant to be enjoyed with great bourbon cocktails, especially in the bourbon center of the world, Louisville, KY. I'm guessing that the regular bartender may not have shown up or something...but our drinks were merely acceptable and were a bit slow to arrive.

Still, we had a great time in an historic place with tons of charm in a great location. I'll go back, but next time, I'll have wine.

g
gaylea
Naples
5 reviews
Dined on December 19, 2019
Overall3food5service4ambience1

Too damn loud.

Report
T
vipTracey
Louisville
15 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious as always!

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Permanently Closed - Lilly's Bistro is rated 4.6 stars by 1110 OpenTable diners.

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