The Winners Of The 2021 Readers’ Choice Awards Are Here

It’s back. The highlight of awards season. The most cutthroat competition in the land. The most anticipated listicle of the year. No, we’re just joking around — Readers’ Choice is just about fun and highlighting local people, places and businesses. And, in a time where there’s been a lot of struggle and setbacks, we hope that this issue helps drive spending to new places, pumping money into the local economy. So, scan through how your fellow readers voted, but mostly use this list to make plans. Find a new favorite spot, artist, album or dozens of other possibilities. Then open up your wallet and spend some money.


Aesthetics

Best Body Piercing
1. Tattoo Charlie’s
2. Twisted Images
3. Artfully Insane

Best Brow/Lashes Studio
1. Dollface
2. Clique
3. Body & Brow Boutique

Best Barbershop
1. Derby City Chop Shop
2. Handsome Fellows
3. Gentleman’s Cut

Best Day Spa
1. CaloSpa
2. Weightless Float Center
3. Lou Well Spa

Best Hair Salon
1. Under the Dryer
2. Trim NuLu
3. Teaz Salon

Best Nail Salon
1. American Nails
2. Nail Box
3. Majestic Nails

Best Tanning Studio
1. Sun Tan City
2. Clique
3. The Glow Mother

Best Tattoo Studio
1. Tattoo Charlie’s
2. Mama Tried
3. Hornet’s Nest

Best Tattoo Artist
1. Boomer Johnston, Hornet’s Nest
2. Lyndi Lou, Mama Tried
3. Travis King, Prophecy Ink

Best Waxing Studio
1. Clique
2. European Wax Center
3. Jeeka Does It

A&E

Best Art Gallery (That Is Not A Museum)
1. Tim Faulkner Gallery
2. B. Deemer
3. Revelry Boutique Gallery

Best Local Album in 2020
1. Carly Johnson — Carly Johnson
2. Prodigy Tha Kid — 10050
3. Dystorchestra — Dues Ex Machina, Pt. 1 

Best Local Song in 2020
1. Prodigy Tha Kid — “Modelo”
2. Faif — “Fallen Tears”
3. Jameron — “Venture”

Best Band/Musician Performing Original Music
1. Piper Madison
2. Electric Garden
3. Prodigy Tha Kid

Best Cover Band
1. Most Wanted 
2. The Rumors
3. The Juice Box Heroes

Best Local Comedian
1. Austin Baker
2. Mandee McKelvey
3. Mack Dryden 

Best Place to See Comedy
1. Planet of the Tapes
2. The Caravan Comedy Club
3. The Bard’s Town

Best Drag Performer
1. Aubrey Jae
2. Umi Naughty
3. Gilda Wabbit

Best Karaoke Bar
1. NoraeBar
2. Akiko’s Karaoke Club
3. The Merryweather

Best Live Music Venue
1. Headliners Music Hall
2. The Louisville Palace
3. Zanzabar

Best Live Theater Venue
1. Actors Theatre of Louisville
2. Kentucky Performing Arts
3. Derby Dinner

Best Improv Troupe
1. Louisville Improvisors 
2. The Indicators
3. The Hystericals

Best Movie Theater
1. Baxter Avenue Theatres Filmworks
2. Xscape Theatres
3. Cinemark Tinseltown

Best Museum (That Is Not A Gallery)
1. Speed Art Museum
2. Frazier History Museum
3. KMAC Museum

Best Outdoor Art Show
1. St. James Court Art Show
2. Cherokee Triangle Art Fair
3. UnFair

Best Performing Arts Group
1. Kentucky Shakespeare 
2. Louisville Orchestra
3. Chicken Coop Theatre Co.

Best Photographer
1. Jon Cherry
2. Andrew Kung
3. Destiny Robb

Best Theater Production (between September and March 2020)
1. “The Wizard of Oz” — Act Louisville
2. “Grey Gardens” — Chicken Coop Theatre Co.
3. Shakespeare in the Park

Best Videographer
1. Kyle Gordon, Best Dad Media
2. Jesse See Tai
3. Louisville Bluegrass Photography

Best Visual Artist
1. John Brooks 
2. Guinever Smith
3. Teri Dryden

Health & Fitness 

Best Cycling Studio
1. CycleBar Middletown
2. The Jewish Community Center
3. CycleBar St. Matthews

Best Dentist
1. Mortenson Family Dental
2. Davis Dental
3. Anthony M. Zangari

Best Doctor
1. Dr. Clayton Smith — UofL Physicians
2. Dr. Katherine Dotson — Norton Health
3. Dr. Terry Weiss — Baptist Health

Best Gym/Fitness Club
1. Derby City Crossfit
2. Title Boxing Club
3. Orangetheory

Best Massage
1. Massage on Mellwood
2. Derby City Massage
3. Sea of Tranquility

Best Mental Health Provider
1. Bridge Counseling and Wellness
2. Behavioral Wellness Clinic
3. Kevin Snellen

Best Personal Trainers
1. Orangetheory Highlands
2. Title Boxing Club
3. Body Sculptors

Best Pilates Studio
1. Lowber Pilates
2. Studio Pilates
3. Wild & Woolly Pilates

Best Place To Buy CBD Products
1. 502 Hemp
2. One Love Hemp Dispensary
3. 7 Leaf

Best Place To Buy Edibles
1. One Love Hemp Dispensary
2. 502 Hemp
3. 7 Leaf

Best CDB Oil
1. Bickett and Boone — Cornbread Mafia
2. 502 Hemp
3. Essentially Hemp

Best Yoga Studio
1. Bend and Zen Hot Yoga
2. YogaSt8
3. 502 Power Yoga

Best Yoga Teacher
1. Meredith Conroy — Bend and Zen Hot Yoga
2. Abica Dubay — Yogast8
3. Carrie Irwin — Bwnd and Zen Hot Yoga

Places & Attractions

Best Apartment Complex
1. Amp Apartments
2. Germantown Mill Lofts
3. Main & Clay

Best Place For An Event/Party
1. Mellwood Art Center
2. PG&J’s Dog Park Bar
3. Speed Art Museum

Best Farmers Market
1. Douglass Loop
2. St. Matthews
3. Bardstown Road

Best Flea Market
1. Fleur de Flea 
2. Flea Off Market
3. Birdie & Vi’s Fleatique

Best Reuse Of A Historic Building
1. Angel’s Envy
2. Noche Mexican BBQ
3. Colonial Gardens

Best Place For Free Entertainment
1. Waterfront Park/Waterfront Wednesdays
2. Kentucky Shakespeare at Central Park
3. Planet of the Tapes

Best Neighborhood
1. The Highlands
2. Clifton
3. Germantown

Best Park
1. Cherokee Park
2. The Parklands of Floyd’s Fork
3. Iroquois Park

Best Place To Take your Dog
1. PG&J’s Dog Park Bar
2. Cherokee Park
3. The Parklands Dog Park

Best Place To Take Kids In The Summer
1. Louisville Zoo
2. The Jewish Community Center
3. Kentucky Kingdom

Best Place To Swim
1. Lakeside Swim Club
2. The Jewish Community Center
3. Turner’s

Best Place To Play Soccer
1. Mockingbird Valley Sports Complex
2. Lynn Family Stadium
3. Seneca Park

Best Senior Living Community
1. Masonic Home
2. Atria
3. Episcopal Church Home

Local Shops

Best Adult/Erotic Store
1. Cirilla’s
2. Love Boutique
3. Adam & Eve

Best Antique Store
1. Middletown Peddlers Mall
2. Fleur de Flea
3. Mellwood Antiques & Interiors

Best Bicycle Shop
1. Parkside Bikes
2. Scheller’s Fitness & Cycling
3. Middletown Cycling

Best Chocolate/Candy Shop
1. Muth’s Candies
2. Sweet Spot
3. Art Eatables

Best Car Dealer
1. Neil Huffman Automotive Group
2. Oxmoor Auto Group
3. Bob Hook 

Best Women’s Clothing Boutique
1. Dot Fox Clothing Culture
2. Electric Indigo
3. Work the Metal

Best Men’s Clothing Boutique
1. Him Gentleman’s Boutique
2. The Capsule
3. Evolve

Best Comic Book Shop
1. Pop’s
2. The Great Escape
3. Heroes Comics and Gaming

Best Consignment Shop
1. Sassy Fox
2. Fat Rabbit
3. Margaret’s Fine Consignments

Best Furniture Store
1. Bliss Home
2. Molly Monkey Kids
3. Green Collar Studio

Best Instrument Shop
1. Doo Wop Shop
2. Guitar Emporium
3. Mom’s Music

Best Jewelry Story
1. Koerber’s Fine Jewelry
2. Davis Jewelers
3. Lackadazee

Best Liquor Store
1. Old Town Wine & Spirits
2. Total Wine & More
3. Westport Whiskey & Wine

Best Store for Bourbon
1. Westport Whiskey & Wine
2. Old Town Wine & Spirits
3. Total Wine & More

Best Local Bookstore
1. Carmichael’s Bookstore
2. Half Price Books
3. Barnes & Noble

Best Local Hardware Store
1. Oscar’s Hardware
2. Keith’s Hardware
3. Brownsboro Hardware

Best Local Health Food Store
1. Rainbow Blossom Natural Food Markets
2. Whole Foods
3. Seeds & Greens

Best Local Record Store
1. Guestroom Records
2. Better Days Records
3. Matt Anthony’s Record Shop

Best Local Wine Shop
1. The Wine Rack 
2. Total Wine & More
3. Old Town Wine & Spirits

Best New Store/Business
1. Birdie & Vi’s Fleatique
2. The Capsule
3. Petals

Best Outdoor Sporting Goods Store
1. Quest Outdoors
2. Dick’s Sporting Goods
3. Cabela’s

Best Pet Shop
1. Feeders Supply
2. Sandy’s Pet Shop
3. Bourbon City Barkery

Best Skate Shop
1. Home Skateshop
2. Tiny Sk8Shop — Riot Skate Park
3. Asylum Xtreme

Best Head Shop
1. Electric Ladyland
2. Puff Puff Pass
3. Trippy’s Smoke Shop

Best Tobacco Store
1. Cox’s Smokers Outlet
2. J Shepherd
3. Kremer’s Smoke Shop

Best Place To Buy A Plant
1. Forage
2. Mahonia
3. Petals

Best Place To Buy Vape Products
1. One Love Hemp Dispensary
2. 502 Hemp
3. Vapor Lab

Best Vintage Clothing Store
1. The Nitty Gritty
2. The Capsule
3. Fat Rabbit

Best Place To Buy A Unique Gift
1. Work the Metal
2. LOUaBULL
3. Revelry

Services

Best Advertising Agency
1. An Agency
2. Mightily
3. Think Tank

Best Local Bank
1. Republic Bank
2. Citizens Union Bank
3. Stock Yards Bank And Trust

Best Credit Union
1. Park Community Credit Union
2. L&N Federal Credit Union
3. Commonwealth Credit Union

Best Dry Cleaner
1. Highland Cleaners
2. Nu-Yale Cleaners
3. Evergreen

Best Grocery Store
1. Kroger
2. Trader Joe’s
3. ValuMarket

Best Hotel
1. 21c Museum Hotel
2. Omni Louisville Hotel
3. Hotel Distil

Best Interior Designer
1. Barry Wooley
2. Reflections of You By Amy
3. Leslie Lewis & Assoc.

Best Lawyer
1. Hessig & Pohl
2. Nick Neumann
3. Reczek Law Office

Best Local Pet Grooming
1. Bark Avenue
2. The Groom Room
3. Pawsitively Dogs Grooming

Best Mechanic
1. Gates Automotive Service
2. Tachyon Performance
3. Reece Service Center

Best Place To Take Music Lessons
1. Kentucky Arts Academy
2. Mom’s
3. Doo Wop Shop

Best PR Firm
1. Debra Locker Group
2. Pro Communications
3. C2 Communications

Best Travel Agency
1. Mint Julep Tours
2. Vacation Experts
3. My World Travel

Best Roofer
1. Highland Roofing
2. Ray Nolan
3. Bone Dry

Best Plumber
1. BC Plumbing
2. Tom Drexler Plumbing, Air and Electric
3. Dauenhauer

Best Vet Clinic
1. VCA Fairleigh Animal Hospital
2. Shively Animal Clinic & Hospital
3. Johnson Animal Clinic

Best Doggie Day Care
1. The Pet Station Country Club
2. Bark Avenue Groom & Bowtique
3. PetSuites

Food & Dining

Best Appetizers
1. Mojito’s Tapas
2. LouVino
3. Four Pegs

Best Bakery
1. Nord’s Bakery
2. Blue Dog Bakery and Café
3. Plehn’s Bakery

Best BBQ
1. Feast BBQ
2. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
3. Four Pegs

Best Breakfast
1. Wild Eggs
2. Con Huevos
3. Biscuit Belly

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Best Boozy Brunch
1. Le Moo
2. Four Pegs
3. LouVino

Best Burger
1. Kern’s Korner
2. Toasty’s Tavern
3. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar

Best Burrito
1. New Wave Burritos
2. El Mundo
3. Bandido Taqueria Mexicana

Best Caterer
1. Casey Mader Chef It Up
2. Wiltshire
3. Masterson’s

Best Cajun
1. J. Gumbo’s
2. Lou Lou Food + Drink
3. The SeaFood Lady

Best Chef
1. Edward Lee
2. Chris Williams
3. Casey Mader

Best Chili
1. Four Pegs
2. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
3. Check’s Cafe

Best Chinese Restaurant
1. August Moon
2. Double Dragon
3. The Joy Luck

Best Coffee Shop
1. Heine Brothers’
2. Please & Thank You
3. Sunergos Coffee

Best Cuban Restaurant
1. Havana Rumba
2. La Bodeguita De Mima
3. Mojito in Havana

Best Deli/Sandwish Shop
1. Morris Deli
2. Stevens & Stevens Deli
3. Frank’s Meat & Produce

Best Delivery
1. New Wave Burritos
2. Pizza Lupo
3. Asian Wok

Best Fine Dining
1. Jack Fry’s
2. Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse
3. Volare Italian Ristorante

Best Fish Sandwich
1. The Fishery
2. Mike Linnig’s Restaurant
3. The Fish House

Best Fried Chicken
1. Joella’s Hot Chicken
2. Royal’s
3. The Eagle

Best Food Truck/Cart
1. Bamba Egg Roll
2. Flavaville
3. 502 Cafe

Best Guacamole
1. El Mundo
2. Guaca Mole
3. Seviche

Best Hot Dog
1. Red Top Gourmet Hotdogs
2. Lonnie’s Best Taste of Chicago
3. That’s My Dog

Best Ice Cream/Frozen Yogurt
1. Louisville Cream
2. Graeter’s
3. The Comfy Cow

Best Indian Restaurant
1. Kashmir Indian Restaurant
2. Dakshin South Indian Restaurant
3. Shalimar Indian Restaurant

Best Italian Restaurant
1. Volare Italian Ristorante
2. bar Vetti
3. Vincenzo’s

Best Korean Restaurant
1. Sarang
2. Gogi 1055 Korean BBQ
3. Lee’s Korean Restaurant

Best Late-Night Bite
1. The Back Door
2. Four Pegs
3. Hilltop Tavern

Best Latin Restaurant
1. Seviche
2. Havana Rumba
3. La Bodeguita De Mima

Best Lunch Spot
1. The Café
2. Stevens & Stevens Deli
3. Naive

Best Mexican Restaurant
1. El Mundo
2. El Nopal
3. Noche Mexican BBQ

Best Middle Eastern Restaurant
1. Shiraz
2. Safier Mediterranean Deli
3. The Grape Leaf

Best New Restaurant
1. Everyday Kitchen
2. Gorilla Bob’s Grub Shack
3. Toasty’s Tavern

Best Outdoor Dining
1. River House Restaurant and Raw Bar
2. Chik’n & Mi
3. Everyday Kitchen

Best Patio For Pets
1. Four Pegs
2. ShopBar
3.  PG&J’s Dog Park Bar

Best Pho
1. Eatz Vietnamese Restaurant
2. Vietnam Kitchen
3. Pho Ba Luu

Best Pizza
1. Pizza Lupo
2. The Post
3. Boombozz

Best Place For A Romantic Dinner
1. Jack Fry’s
2. Volare
3. Seviche

Best Ramen
1. Ramen House 
2. Chik’n & Mi
3. Renshoku

Best Raw Bar (That Is Not Sushi)
1. River House Restaurant & Raw Bar
2. Doc Crow’s Southern Smokehouse and Raw Bar
3. Lou Oyster Cult

Best Restaurant: Butchertown
1. Naive
2. Pizza Lupo
3. Hog Father

Best Restaurant: Downtown
1. Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse
2. Proof on Main
3. Vincenzo’s 

Best Restaurant: East Louisville
1. The Village Anchor
2. Havana Rumba
3. LouVino

Best Restaurant: Germantown/Schnitzelburg
1. Four Pegs
2. Check’s Cafe
3. The Post

Best Restaurant: Clifton/Crescent Hill
1. Volare Italian Ristorante
2. El Mundo
3. Irish Rover

Best Restaurant: Highlands
1. Noche Mexican BBQ
2. Ramsi’s Cafe On the World
3. Jack Fry’s

Best Restaurant: NuLu
1. Mayan Cafe
2. bar Vetti
3. EveryDay Kitchen

Best Restaurant: South Louisville
1. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
2. Vietnam Kitchen
3. Gorilla Bob’s Grub Shack

Best Restaurant: St. Matthews
1. The Fishery
2. Joella’s Hot Chicken
3. District 6

Best Restaurant: West Louisville
1. The Table
2. Lucretia’s Kitchen
3. Big Momma’s Soul Kitchen

Best Restaurant: S. Indiana
1. Pints & Union
2. The Exchange
3. Parlour

Best Salad
1. Green District
2. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
3. bar Vetti

Best Steakhouse
1. Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse
2. Pat’s Steakhouse
3. Le Moo

Best Sushi
1. Dragon King’s Daughter
2. Oishii Sushi
3. Sapporo Japanese Grill & Sushi

Best Taco
1. El Taco Luchador
2. Noche Mexican BBQ
3. Agave & Rye

Best Takeout
1. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
2. Gorilla Bob’s Grub shack
3. V-Grits

Best Thai Restaurant
1. Simply Thai
2. Time 4 Thai
3. Thai Cafe

Best Vegetarian Restaurant
1. V-Grits
2. Roots/Heart & Soy
3. Shahar Cafe

Best Vietnamese Restaurant
1. Vietnam Kitchen
2. Eatz Vietnamese Restaurant
3. District 6

Best Wings
1. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
2. Four Pegs
3. Momma’s Mustard, Pickles & BBQ 

Drinks

Best To-Go Cocktails
1. The Merryweather
2. Planet of the Tapes
3. Gold Bar

Best Bartender
1. Maggie Luckett — Four Pegs
2. Alana Hudson — Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
3. Brandon Haydon — Big Bar

Best Bar: Butchertown
1. High Horse
2. Play
3. Gold Bar

Best Bar: Downtown
1. Expo
2. Meta
3. Hell or High water

Best Bar: East Louisville
1. Captain’s Quarters
2. Commonwealth Tap
3. Village Anchor

Best Bar: Germantown/Schnitzelburg
1. The Merryweather
2. Four Pegs
3. The Pearl

Best Bar: Clifton/Crescent Hill
1. Hilltop Tavern
2. The Silver Dollar
3. The Gallant Fox

Best Bar: Highlands
1. Big Bar
2.  PG&J’s Dog Park Bar
3. ShopBar

Best Bar: NuLu
1. Taj Louisville
2. NoraeBar
3. Galaxie

Best Bar: South Louisville
1. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar
2. The B.A. Colonial
3. O’Dolly’s

Best Bar: St. Matthews
1. Diamond Pub & Billiards
2. Saint’s Pizza and Pub
3. Gerstle’s Place

Best Bar: West End
1. Sally Forth Taproom
2. Double Deuces
3. Club Cedar

Best Bar: S. Indiana
1. Pints & Union
2. The Alcove
3. Our Lady of Perpetual Hops

Best Hotel Bar
1. Proof on Main — 21c Museum hotel
2. Pin + Proof — Omni Louisville Hotel
3. 8UP

Best Beer List
1. Holy Grale
2. Sergio’s World Beers
3. Four Pegs

Best Bourbon List
1. Trouble Bar
2. The Silver Dollar
3. Bourbons Bistro

Best Local Brewery
1. Monnik Beer Co. 
2. Gravely Brewing Co.
3. Mile Wide Beer Co.

Best Local Craft Beer
1. Gravely — Debaser IPA
3. Monnik — Eagle Skull Saison
4. Mile Wide  — McPoyle Milk Stout

Best Cocktail
1. Mai Tai — The Merryweather
2. BlueBerry Smash — The B.A. Colonial
3. Gin Varney — Planet of the Tapes

Best Local Distillery
1. Copper & Kings
2. Angel’s Envy
3. Rabbit Hole

Best Dive Bar
1. Bambi Bar
2. The Back Door
3. Nachbar

Best Wine List
1. LouVino
2. Nouvelle Bar & Bottle
3. Vines Wine Bar & Spirit Shop

Best Margarita
1. El Mundo
2. Noche Mexican BBQ
3. I Love Tacos

Nightlife

Best Bar Scene
1. Play
2. High Horse
3. Big Bar

Best Club DJ
1. Silver + Gold
2. Glittertitz DJZ
3. Sam Sneed

Best Gay Bar/Club
1. Play
2. Big Bar
3. Chill Bar

Best Happy Hour
1. Big Bar
2. Chill Bar
3. Trouble Bar

Best Neighborhood Bar/Pub
1. The Merryweather
2. Big Bar
3. Rubbies Southside Grill & Bar

Best New Bar/Club
1.  PG&J’s Dog Park Bar
2. Planet of the Tapes
3. Birdie & Vi’s

Best Place to Dance
1. Play
2. Zanzabar
3. Galaxie

Best Place to Find a Date IRL
1. PG&J’s Dog Park Bar
2. Play
3. Gold Bar

Best Place to Shoot Pool
1. Barret Bar
2. The Back Door
3. Diamond Pub & Billiards

Best Strip Club
1. PT’s Showclub Louisville
2. Thorobred Lounge
3. The Godfather

Media

Best Local Instagram
1. Jesse Hurt, @jessehurtphoto
2. JCP Eats, @jcpeats
3. Mike Tomes, @mike_tomes_social

Best Local Blog
1. Hannah Drake — Write Some Shit
2. Card Chronicle
3. The Kentucky Gent

Best Local Podcast
1. Strange Fruit
2. My Old Kentucky Podcast
3. My Skeptical Sister

Best Local Publication
1. LEO Weekly
2. Business First
3. The Courier Journal

Best Local Radio Personality
1. Regular Laura — 107.7 The Eagle
2. Matt Anthony — 91.9 WFPK
3. Laura shine — 91.9 WFPK

Best Local Radio Station
1. 107.7 The Eagle
2. 91.9 WFPK
3. 89.3 WFPL

Best Local TV Personality
1. Dawne Gee — WAVE 3
2. Candyce Clifft — WDRB 41
3. Jennifer Baileys — WLKY 32

Best Local TV Station
1. WDRB 41
2. WLKY 32
3. WAVE 3

Best Local Website
1. Wdrb.com
2. Cardinalsportszone.com
3. Stateoflouisville.com

Best Place to Pick up a LEO Weekly
1. Heine Brothers’ 
2. Rainbow Blossom Natural Food Markets
3. ValuMarket

Best Twitter Feed
1. @CardChronicle
2. @MurphyCartoons
3. @Oliviakrauth

Best Local Writer
1. James Wilkerson
2. Hannah Drake
3. Joe Gerth

Community

Best Local Activist
1. Hannah Drake
2. Charles Booker
3. Christopher 2X

Best Community Role Model
1. Charles Booker
2. Attica Scott
3. Sadiqa Reynolds

Best Local Athlete
1. Rajon Rondo
2. Oksana Masters
3. Demontaze ‘Juicy’ Duncan

Best Place to Worship
1. Highland Baptist Church
2. Southeast Christian Church
3. Nature

Best Place You Wish Had Never Gone Out Of Business
1. ear X-tacy
2. Lynn’s Paradise Cafe
3. Butchertown Grocery

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