Forecastle Artists Weigh In With Louisville Picks

Forecastle Fest 2017 will set sail July 14-16 — its 15th year — and with headliners like LCD Soundsystem, Weezer, Odesza, and Sturgill Simpson, this Forecastle is shaping up to be amazing, hosting 75,000+ music lovers from around the world.

But does the Derby City have enough to offer Forecastle visitors in places to eat, drink and play — enough, we dare ask, to entice them when they’re not rocking out at Forecastle? Ch-yeah, you bet it does!

And the best people to help them navigate Louisville’s cultural and epicurean waters? Louisville’s own locals!

Yelp and Forecastle have teamed up on a special survey — 15 questions for 15 years of Forecastle — through which residents can give their picks. The survey includes a collection of the highest-rated and most-reviewed places in the Louisville area, and to be included, a business must have at least a four-star rating. The results will be shared June 30 on this blog as well as on the Forecastle website.

And everyone who takes the survey will be entered to win a pair of GA Plus tickets to Forecastle Festival 2017 and swag bag from Yelp and Forecastle!

Take the survey here.

And to kick it off, we have great Louisville recommendations from members of three Louisville bands playing Forecastle: Jaye Jayle, Quiet Hollers, and Jack Harlow.

Evan Patterson, of Jaye Jayle

What excites you about playing Forecastle in Louisville?

In particular, I’m looking very much forward to seeing PJ Harvey perform. I’ve been a fan of her work as well as Mick Harvey’s work. They have been collaborating on her past two albums. Mick was a part the bands The Birthday Party and Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds prior to working with PJ Harvey. Huge artistic influences in my musical life.

What are your fave spots that you recommend people check out in Louisville? 

Crazy Daisy and Joe Ley are great for aimlessly wandering through odds and ends of random antiques, records, and what-nots. I saw a wonderful show from Jonathan Richman at Zanzabar‘s recently renovated venue. Walking around Cherokee Park is always gorgeous.

What is Louisville’s best kept secret? 

I’m not a religious person, but St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church is somewhat of a secret site worth seeing. The church houses two skeletons and an epic organ.

Shadwick Wilde, of Quiet Hollers

What excites you about playing Forecastle in Louisville?

The diversity of Forecastle line-ups has always been compelling for me as a music fan. This year, I’ll be enjoying it as an artist and maybe a guest-bartender — who knows? I’m a huge fan of Charles Bradley, Run the Jewels and PJ Harvey. People come to Louisville from all over the world for this festival, and I’m proud to be able to represent our city to them.

What are your fave spots that you recommend people check out in Louisville? 

In my heart of hearts is the Mag Bar (or Magnolia Bar & Grill, though there is absolutely no grill to be found) in Old Louisville. I worked at this punky dive bar before my promotion to full-time musician. It still boasts the best jukebox in town and some very cheap drinks.

Vietnam Kitchen and Queen of Sheba are two of my favorite local eateries, boasting authentic Vietnamese and Ethiopian fare, respectively. Both are a bit of a drive from downtown but more than worth it. For Mexican, try Bandido Taqueria Mexicana, which I’m sure is not associated with the biker gang of the same name. The chef-owner is a tattooed fellow from out West, who refuses to talk about his past.

What is Louisville’s best kept secret? 

Louisville’s best kept secret is probably 610 Magnolia. This small, upscale restaurant is run by celebrity chef Edward Lee and serves modern-inspired traditional Southern cuisine. It’s a secret because nobody I know can afford to eat there! When I worked at the Mag Bar, we would get phone calls from people trying to make reservations at 610 Magnolia, which I was always more than happy to accept. “…and that’s Bevin with a ‘B’ for how many… 10 persons? Great, we have you down for 8pm on Friday.” Take that, high society!

Jack Harlow

What excites you about playing Forecastle in Louisville?

I remember when my mom took me to my first Forecastle when I was like 12 or 13. Then I saw Outkast there when I was 16. I remember telling my friends I was gonna be on one of those stages. It’s just a hometown thing. I’m excited.

What are your fave spots that you recommend people check out in Louisville? 

Alright, I got y’all. Now listen, I don’t have a very sophisticated palate — like I’m lightweight childish — but I got some heat if you’re a simple man like me:

1. Bunz Burgerz on Baxter Avenue in the Highlands. Best burger in the city.

2. Indi’s on 11th and Broadway for the culture. The mac ‘n’ cheese is PACK.

3. Highland Morning on Bardstown Road for breakfast, amazing pancakes.

4. Also, the Qdoba on Bardstown Road (most legendary Qdoba in the nation) is gonna be cracking every night of that weekend, especially for Forecastle. And it just doesn’t close. So that’s where you wanna go if it’s real late.

What is Louisville’s best kept secret? 

I’m gonna have to go with Santa Fe. Little Mexican spot on Third Street down by campus, purple building. Inexpensive, great service, food comes out almost concerningly fast. And it tastes amazing. Best Mexican in the city for me. Like I’m actually headed there after I finish typing this. You can thank me later on Twitter: @jackharlow.


Now it’s your turn, Louisville! Give us your recommendations via the Yelp + Forecastle Eat, Drink and Play Survey 2017.

And want to save these artists’ picks to remember later? Click here to save and follow a bookmark collection of these spots on the Yelp app.