In Lexington, KY, The Village Idiot is a typical pub that excels.
Well, I guess, this means it’s not as idiotic as it may seem? It doesn’t live up to the name?
According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, the gastropub opened in 2012. The building, which was built in 1825, used to be a former post office building. It’s not the first establishment to be run by the Behr family. Patriarch Tom owns Pazzo’s Pizza Pub at 385 S. Limestone. His son Brian is the manager of The Village Idiot, which sits at 307 W. Short St.
In the article, father Tom describes the place as a pub you’d see in a little English town. This holds true. The wooden interior is a significant giveaway. Behind the bar sat a copious amount of bourbon bottles. The sunlight peering in accented everything beautifully. For a cool late-March morning, the two-story establishment felt cozy after walking the streets of Lexington while Katey was held up in the hippotherapy conference. She recommended the place.
The late morning crowd was sparse for a Saturday, so I was able to grab a seat at the bar. It was then the tall Alec set the bar high for hospitality. After welcoming me to The Village Idiot, he introduced himself and asked my name. We shook hands and the conversation flowed.
This seemed normal for him. Alec treated everyone who came and sat barside the same — introduction, name exchange, conversation. For a group of four guys, he wrote the names down as they said them and he repeated. It’s a great way to learn the names because he kept addressing his patrons by their name. In every interaction, he dropped a Chris in the mix.
The food options looked great and defined the whole gastropub designation — familiar offerings but kicked up a notch or two. Being my indecisive self, I asked Alec what he recommended.
Did you eat breakfast yet? he asked.
Noon had already passed. Aside from enjoying the coffee and an apple fritter from Magee’s Bakery — nope. After getting that up-and-at-’em first wind after dropping Katey off, I browsed through Kentucky pamphlets and decided to catch the first tour at the Mary Todd Lincoln House, which is totally worth a visit.
To accompany the meal — Lexington Brewing Company‘s Bourbon Barrel Ale, which is a Robocop version of its flagship standard ale. Katey and I ended up visiting the Town Branch facility, which holds the brewery and distillery, and both ales are the most solid of what they brew. The bourbon barrel aged flavor was enough.
I took Alec’s suggestion of the country breakfast. The plate consisted of two locally sourced eggs, thick cut bacon and a piece of sausage, potatoes “breakfast style,” and a buttermilk biscuit covered in gravy. The hearty plate was $12.
The eggs, which were served as ordered (over easy). The bacon and sausage boasted much flavor. The biscuit and gravy weren’t heavy. The potatoes, slightly dry, were great after dipping pieces into the egg yolk. It was just enough food. I didn’t need to even bother with the ketchup.
Later that night, after dinner, Katey and I were looking for a mid-evening snack. After hitting up notorious bourbon bar Blue Grass Tavern, 115 Cheapside in Lexington, which boasts close to 800 varieties of bourbon, we hit up The Village Idiot again for some pimento cheese fritters.
Six golfball-sized fritters come with each $10 order, plus a side of spicy tomato jam. The lightly hand-breaded crispy-coated balls are piping hot in the center. The cheese is super flavorful and gooey. After biting into one of the fritters, it held up well. The crispy fried coating didn’t falter and cheese didn’t seep onto my hand.
We got the order for takeaway since The Village Idiot was crowded, there were no barside seats available, and walked the easy 10 minutes back to the Airbnb.
The Village Idiot proved to be a smart dining option in Lexington. When we go back, we’ll definitely hit the place up again. Whether it’s for brunch, dinner, or a nightlife experience, there is a lot to enjoy about the pub. There are some menu items that pique my curiosity.