1576 Bardstown Rd
Visited on March 24, 2008
Cumberland is a nice, quaint brewpub in downtown Louisville. I sat at a small bar, enjoyed some quality brews, and had some fantastic pub grub. I believe there was also stout ice cream involved. I have nothing but warm feelings left over, if the details of my visit are now somewhat diminished.
The brewpub doesn’t open until 4:00 p.m. on weekdays, and I was wavering between waiting and going to Bluegrass Brewing earlier. I’m glad I chose to wait. The brewpub is in a very unique location—a former ice cream parlor. A long bar is complimented by just a handful of 4-tops, but don’t let that fool you. There’s an entire upstairs area that makes you feel at home with a small bar, sofas and comfy chairs, in addition to more seating options. I absolutely loved the feel of this one.
The menu is pretty limited to pub fare, but it’s pretty good. A large chalk board on the wall announces the constantly changing specials, and a steady menu covers the basics that include Kentucky-raised bison burgers, salads, fried fish sandwiches, and other traditional pub fare. The burger was great, I chose to top it with sautéed mushrooms, Swiss cheese and roasted garlic. The steak fries were meaty and extremely well prepared, and go great with a crock of homemade beer cheese. Of special note is their homemade ice cream that incorporates the sweet malt from their unfermented porter blend that gives it a rich, deep, complex flavor that can only be described as awesome.
Hopheads rejoice! Every beer (excluding the light blonde) served at this brewpub is more than adequately hopped. It was a refreshing change to bland, conservative brews I’d been drinking all weekend at BW3’s during the NCAA basketball tournament. Every beer pops at you in a good way. The Irish stout, porter, and nut brown ale were all excellent examples of their categories. But my favorite was the seasonal Dortmunder (a rare find at a brewpub). It was light bodied yet fully flavored with a citrus nose and after-taste. Brewmaster, I tip my hat to you.
I got wonderful service all afternoon long. You even get a brief bio of the servers in the menu! I guess this helps you strike up a conversation while enjoying the wonderful pints they’re pouring you.