Each day at Taco Punk, Chef Gabe Sowder makes every component of his tacos anew. He mixes produce sourced from local farmer’s markets into salsas and mole, and smashes masa, corn flour, and wheat flour to make tortillas. But it's his taco fillings that stand out more than his prep methods: sustainable Pacific cod, all-natural Amish chicken, and grass-fed beef braised in Goose Island beer—all accented with hand-smashed guac or fresh salsas such as pineapple-habanero.
Chef Sowder's gourmet approach to finger food is no accident. Years spent working in upscale eateries had given him an idea: "There were people I knew who were musicians and artists who didn't have the money to come in and experience something awesome," he told Food & Dining Magazine in 2012, "So I decided to take the ideals of fine dining and apply them to the quick-service model."
As he shared in his appearance on Secrets of Louisville Chefs Live, Chef Sowder emphasizes healthy food, too: there are no deep fryers or butter-powered ovens at Taco Punk. Instead, meat and vegetable fillings are generally smoked or grilled, and none are injected with chemicals or preservatives. After a hearty and healthy meal, diners are invited to indulge in ice cream and other frozen treats from The Comfy Cow.
At La Cocina de Mama, the culinary team sticks mainly to Mexican staples?think carne asada tacos drizzled in tomatillo sauce or two juicy pork chops with beans, rice, and sweet plantains. Occasionally, though, they whip up a dish in the quirky style that the (possibly mythical) namesake matriarch likes best. Take Pollo de Mama, for instance, a chicken breast char-broiled in secret sauce, crowned in grilled veggies and cheese dip.?
Really, though, the eatery holds appeal for all types of moms. Moms who left the kids at home with a sitter might enjoy drinks such as pisco sours, martinis, or a frothy vanilla milkshake. Meanwhile, moms who bring in their youngsters might appreciate the [kids' menu](http://lacocinalouisville.com/kids-menu/(http://lacocinalouisville.com/kids-menu/), which features chicken tenders and grilled cheese.
The kitchens inside La Bamba look a bit different from most. That's because they don't have a freezer or a fryer, and instead focus on fresh food cooked right in front of the customer. The restaurant's chefs start with traditional bolillos?a soft Mexican roll?or tortillas that are made specifically for the restaurant each day. In addition to the as-big-as-your-head La Bamba burrito, they craft tacos and tortas with meat or vegetarian fillings. Chefs then add a spicy touch and splash dishes with their hot sauce, which is so popular people ask for it in bottles or pepper-spray form.
Sun Tan City’s trained tanning consultants help clients get bronzed via UV-free tanning booths and ergonomic tanning beds. Guests can schedule a single visit to touch up an existing tan, purchase a multivisit package to get a discounted rate, or become a member to take advantage of the salon’s 100% guarantee.
Back in the old days when folks walked uphill both ways, fine dining consisted of one baked bean and a can of potatoes. Avalon provides a much higher standard of dining, thanks to chef Laurence Agnew’s impeccable taste and attention to detail—both of which played a role in his being selected by the James Beard Foundation to participate in this year's Celebrity Chef Program. While surrounded by beige and green hues and a modern bistro feel, patrons can enjoy Agnew's varied menu of small plates, sandwiches, and dinner plates.