I recently had the chance to check out a new (to me!) restaurant in Norton Commons. The 502 Bar and Bistro, a product of Chef Ming Pu, is a culinary delight in our city. Chef Pu utilizes local influence and his Taiwanese roots to produce his unique culinary style, which makes our dining scene even more spectacular here in Louisville. For that, I am grateful.
What I am about to say, I do not say lightly: this was one of the best meals that I have had in Louisville. Everything was simply delicious, only made better by getting to sit outside on their gorgeous patio. I’m so thankful that it is patio season — and the one at 502 Bar & Bistro is one not to miss this year!
Now, to the (oh-so-delicious) food!
The meal started off with a cocktail, of course. I chose the “Warmer Weather”, which features Aviation Gin and Aperol. With each sip, I craved summer more and more!
I then moved into some delicious lamb meatballs, perfectly coated in a delicious sauce, and served with country ham-infused bread (yes, you read that correctly. It’s insanely good!).
If I see mussels on the menu, I can’t resist. Chef Ming Pu’s Prince Edward Island Mussels have red onion, cherry tomatoes, crispy fingerling potatoes, a coconut red curry broth, and cilantro; the mussels can be served in a half-portion size or a full-portion… you’ll want the full.
When Chef Pu visited my table for the first time, I told him that the one thing on the menu that I had to try = the Brussels sprouts. Hear me out — they stood up to my expectations. They are crispy and glazed in a chili + honey vinaigrette, topped with bourbon pecans. Divine.
Next? None other than a creamy, pesto pasta dish; I really enjoyed the addition of asparagus to the plate, for it made it light, yet heavy, at the same time. That’s a difficult feat to accomplish, yet one that I love when ordering an entree.
Chef Pu’s current favorite dish on the menu is an homage to his childhood. Pork-based, it is inspired by Taiwanese street food. When I travel, I often find that the most authentic culinary experiences are from street vendors. It was a privilege to eat this from his kitchen — I could taste the soul and passion behind it.
Is it a menu in the South without Shrimp & Grits? Chef Pu uses Weisenberger grits (the best!), red eye gravy, cherry tomatoes, country ham, and seasonal mushrooms. The creamy grits with the contrasting red eye gravy? Genius. Two thumbs up.
The last main course that I tried (yes, I was immensely full!) = a delicious chicken dish, beautifully flavored by luxurious black truffle oil. With each bite, I was greeted by the use of truffle — but, in the best, most balanced way. Not overwhelming in the least, yet always present. Chef Pu outdid himself on this dish.
Before dessert, I had to enjoy one more libation — their seasonal Old Fashioned, beautifully infused with peach. The bourbon selection at 502 Bar & Bistro is immense and all purveyors of the sweet nectar of our Commonwealth will be delighted upon arrival.
Dessert was a deconstructed oatmeal creme pie. It was, as I like to say, Write Your MeeMaw Good. Definitely the perfect ending to a beautiful meal in Norton Commons!
You can visit Chef Pu and indulge in his creations at the 502 Bar & Bistro at 10401 Meeting St, Prospect, KY 40059; do tell ’em that I sent ya!
As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!
Y’all come back now, ya hear?
FTC: This is a sponsored post; however, as always, all opinions expressed are my own.