Lynn’s Paradise Cafe, Louisville, Ky.
A giant tree in the middle of a restaurant. That was the first thing that my wonderful lady Amy McFann noticed when she saw the picture of my trip to Lynn’s, which is certainly one of the most surreal experiences you will ever have when eating, mainly because of the completely ridiculous decor. That’s the first thing you notice when you enter Lynn’s, after coming through a Cracker Barrel-type store to enter.
But the reason you come to Lynn’s isn’t what’s in the second picture, it’s what’s in the first picture. Lynn’s is famous for large and interesting breakfasts, and they don’t come much better than the creative dishes served in this Louisville breakfast haven.
Although the standard bacon, eggs and pancakes/waffles you might find at places such as Waffle House (and no disrespect to Waffle House, I would love some of their hash browns) are on the menu, that’s not what makes this place famous. Lynn’s has six omelets and scrambles on the menu, all with high-brow and high-quality ingredients. Examples include the Greek scramble, which includes sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, Jack and feta cheese and Greek olives, the Kentucky Scramble of white cheddar, tomatoes and bacon, and my choice, the wild mushroom scramble.
I make no secret of the fact that I love mushrooms. At Lynn’s, that’s what you get with a whole lot of other stuff. Lynn’s combines two kinds of mushrooms with white cheddar, bacon, spinach and a horseradish dill sour cream.
A word about the horseradish dill sour cream. First, it’s going to have quite a bit of bite to it, as horseradish is famous for its kick. However, there’s also the presence of the dill. I’ve said many times that I think dill is the money herb, because pretty much anything that it gets added to instantly becomes better in my opinion. I do not intend to test that theory on my cheesecakes, but for things like this that involve creams or vegetables, dill has yet to go badly in my experience.
This is no different. The taste of the dill works against the kick of the horseradish and complements the sour cream to provide a perfect condiment for the eggs, cheese and mushrooms. The bacon and spinach are just great additions to an already excellent taste.
Besides the creative scrambles, Lynn’s also knows how to get the simple things correct. Home fries are a standard side here, and these are the legitimate breakfast potatoes, not the stringy, coarsely chopped hash browns that only Waffle House has seemed to manage to get correct. Throw in a homemade biscuit served with two kinds of butter and jelly to complement it, and you have one of the most delicious breakfasts you’ll enjoy in probably the weirdest setting ever.
I’m not really sure what goes on inside Lynn’s mind to come up with a restaurant that looks like this. But after trying a scramble, I’m totally okay with whatever it is.
Time to go: Breakfast. Lynn’s also serves lunch and is open until 10 p.m., but breakfasts are what make this place famous. They know it, too, because you can get breakfast any time Lynn’s is open.
Wait during my visit: Not bad, pretty standard for what you’d expect with a breakfast place.
Location: Lynn’s can be found at 984 Barret Avenue in Louisville, Ky.
Parking: There’s a good amount in the lot behind the giant pouring coffee mug. No, I’m not making any of that up.
Cost: This is the one downside of Lynn’s. You’re paying for an experience as much as you are a meal. It’ll be difficult to get out of here for under $15 a person.
Website: Lynn’s Paradise Cafe
Specialty items: Creative breakfasts