Restaurant News & Reviews

Tickets to annual Crave food, music festival on sale now for discounts

LexGo Eat visits Pazzo's

The LexGo Eat team spoke with head chef Jason Ritchey at Pazzo's Pizza Pub, located on South Limestone and across the street from UK.
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The LexGo Eat team spoke with head chef Jason Ritchey at Pazzo's Pizza Pub, located on South Limestone and across the street from UK.

The annual Crave Food & Music Festival returns Aug. 13-14 at Masterson Station Park with more than 40 food vendors, including A Cup of Common Wealth, Athenian Grill, Bella Notte, Big Daddy’s Wieners, Bronte Bistro, Bru Burger Bar, Caldo, Coffee Times, Columbia’s Steakhouse, Confused Confections, Country Fried Creations, Crank & Boom, Creative Table Kitchen & Catering, Cuban Pete Sandwiches, Dad’s Favorites, Empanadas Aqui, Enoteca, Go Go Burger Truck, Han Cook In, Hardwood Pizza Co., Hog Fathers BBQ, Honnah-Lee Bubble Tea, IntegriTea, J’s Place, Jasmine Rice food truck, Jonathan Lundy Events, JunBug Honey Soda, Lexington Diner, LocalsOnly: Louisville, Mad Scoops, Masala Indian Cuisine, MEATS BBQ, Midway School Bakery, MiMi’s Kitchen, Minton’s Little Brother, Noodles & Co., Palmers Fresh Grill, Pasta Garage, Pollo: A Gourmet Chicken Truck, Popcorn Paradise, Red State BBQ, Roll ’n’ Smoke, Rolling Oven, Salsarita’s Fresh Cantina, Savor the Flavor, Sav’s Chill, Sav’s Grill, Souq Lexington, Spotz Gelato, Street Craves, The Snack Shack, Tuk Tuk Sri Lankan Bites, Village Idiot, Wilson’s Family Catering, Whooo Wants Waffles, Wild Thyme Catering, and Willie’s Locally Known.

Admission is $6; kids 10 and under are free. Parking is free. All food items are $1, $3 or $5, sold for “Crave Bucks” that can be purchased at the festival or in advance online at for a discount until Aug. 5.

Ticket packages, which include admission, are available for $49, $99 and $139. The festival is open noon to 11 p.m. Aug. 13 and noon to 7 p.m. Aug. 14. There also will be craft beer, cocktails and wine for purchase, and food performances as well as lots of live music.

The Smiley Pete event is a fundraiser for GreenHouse 17. Last year’s event raised more than $20,000 for the nonprofit which helps those impacted by intimate partner abuse.

▪  It isn’t too early to plan for Picnic with the Pops, Aug. 19 and 20 at Keeneland. Dupree Catering + Events is again offering a special menu for the event with appetizers; a choice of entrees including dry-rubbed and grilled flank steak, hickory salmon with a fresh tomato mignonette, pecan-crusted chicken breast with creole mustard or heirloom tomato pie. All entrees come with sidesand dessert. Call 859-231-0464 for prices and to book an order.

▪  Chef Ouita Michel has named Tyler McNabb chef de cuisine at Holly Hill Inn, 426 North Winter Street in Midway. McNabb, who has worked four years with her restaurants, will be in charge of day-to-day operations and write menus with Michel.

A Sullivan University graduate, McNabb worked at Michel’s Windy Corner Market in Lexington, quickly moving from dishwasher to line cook. He then moved to Holly Hill as a line cook, and was promoted to sous chef.

“Tyler inspires us all in the way he honors both traditional and contemporary cuisines and flavors,” Michel said. For reservations, call 859-846-4732.

▪  Portofino, 249 East Main Street, is extending the $26, 3-course, Restaurant Week dinner menu though the event has ended. “So many of our clients, both new and old, were very pleased with our summer supper, and we decided to keep offering it for a longer time. Both salmon and chicken entrees will be available,” owner Wayne Masterman said.

For reservations, call 859-253-9300. Patio seating is available.

▪  Winchell’s Restaurant and Bar, 348 Southland Drive, is holding another lobster boil 4 p.m. Aug. 23. It’s $39.99 per person for three-course meal of New England clam chowder, whole lobster served with corn on the cob and new potatoes and fruit cobbler. Call 859-278-9424 to reserve a spot.

▪  Alfalfa, 141 East Main Street, will feature Indian cuisine for International Night, Aug. 3. From 5:30 to 9 p.m., you can get Bengali shrimp or tofu (shrimp or tofu in coconut milk sauce with garlic, ginger, chilies, cardamom, cinnamon and cloves), chicken 65 (spicy yogurt and spice marinated fried boneless chicken with red onion and cilantro), vegetable Kolhapuri (cauliflower, peas, carrot, green beans, red peppers, potato, tomato, garlic and ginger simmered in a masala of sesame seeds, poppy seeds, coconut, chilies and spices), royal eggplant, or masala dosa (chickpea flour crepes filled with a rich potato curry of onions, cashews, ginger, chilies and spices.) Next week will feature Puerto Rican cuisine. Call 859-253-0014.

▪  Cork & Barrel, 2263 Nicholasville Road, is bringing back bourbon educator Tim Knittel for another Bourbon 101 class at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 3. For $25 per person, he will guide you through six flights of bourbon, including “white dog” right off the still. Appetizers also served. Call 859-278-9463 for reservations.

▪  Culinary Evangelist Dan Wu is doing another Ramen Pop-up 6:30 p.m. Aug. 5 at Creative Table Kitchen and Catering, 185 Pasadena Drive. Tickets are $35, available at

Chrisman Mill Winery, 2385 Chrisman Mill Road in Nicholasville, is offering a Behind the Winery tour at 11:30 a.m. Aug. 6. Tour also includes paired appetizers and wines. Tour is $35; call 859-264-9463.

▪  Birmingham Sushi will be at West Sixth Brewing, 501 West Sixth Street, teaching a sushi-making class 7 p.m. Aug. 8. Cost is $40 per person; tickets are available online at

In the two-hour, hands-on beginner class, you will learn how to make perfect sticky rice; how to make sushi’s most popular sauces, including bangbang, spicy mayo, uumyum and eel sauce; where to shop and what to buy; how to buy fish, and most importantly, how to handle it at home to ensure that you can safely serve it; how to roll sushi that will never fall apart; and tips, tricks and insider knowledge from a working sushi chef. You’ll also go home with a cheat sheet full of tips, recipes, shopping locations and more. Call 208-245-0665 for more information.

▪  Until Aug. 4, Kentuckians can vote online for their Local Food Heroes, farmers from across the region who grow food, at The top three vote-getters of the fourth annual contest will be honored at by Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles on Aug. 18 at the Kentucky State Fair.

▪  Mark your calendar, Chick-fil-A fans: On Aug. 11, from 6:30 to 10:30 a.m., participating Chick-fil-A restaurants in Central Kentucky will give away free three-count Chick-n-minis (one per person while supplies last) in honor of the opening of Frankfort’s store on Aug. 4.

▪  The Olé Restaurant Group has opened Red Barn Kitchen, a chef-driven Southern and barbecue concept, at 8131 New LaGrange Road in Louisville. “This is southern home cooking and barbecue from a chef’s perspective,” said chef Fernando Martinez. “It’s a family-friendly place with an amazing, lively patio. It’s one of the largest outdoor dining options in the area, and we think it will become a Louisville favorite.”

Reed Johnson, formerly of Wiltshire Pantry, is executive chef; the menu includes bone-in fried chicken, shrimp and grits with country ham and shellfish broth, BLT with pimento cheese and fried green tomatoes, a country ham pork chop, mac & cheese with cheese curds, and smoked pork, pork ribs, beef brisket, and beef ribs.

Red Barn Kitchen will offer custom moonshine cocktails, an extensive bourbon list, and eventually 52 beers on tap ranging from domestic favorites, to local craft brews. The restaurant is open for dinner from 5:30 to 10 p.m.; in the next several months, the restaurant will expand to lunch service, including Saturday and Sunday brunch. Call 502-434-7470 for reservations.