John Varanese announcing plans for River House Restaurant and Raw Bar. | Photo by Steve Coomes
John Varanese announcing plans for River House Restaurant and Raw Bar. | Photo by Steve Coomes

Chef John Varanese has revealed the second of two concepts set to open next year on River Road.

Back in August, Varanese announced plans for a Southern concept called River House Restaurant and Raw Bar, located at 3015 River Road next to KingFish.

At that time, Varanese said he had more up his chef’s jacket sleeve for the 27,000-square-foot, two-story building than just River House, which will take up the entire first floor.

Not long after River House opens in February, Levee at the River House, an indoor/outdoor bar, will make its debut on the second floor, according to a news release. It will seat about 130 people inside and 100 people outside.

Levee at the River House will only take up about one-third of the space upstairs. Varanese eventually hopes to use the remaining 11,000 square feet on the second floor for private catered events.

River House and Levee at the River House will share a kitchen, but the Levee will serve a different menu of small plates, including steak sliders with caramelized onions, crab and green chili fried ravioli, and tuna ceviche with mango and cucumber.

The bar will serve frozen cocktails with fresh herbs such as a strawberry-jalapeno margarita with agave.

“We hope the riverside atmosphere paired with great local music and premier food and beverage options will establish Levee as a unique evening destination,” Varanese said in the release.

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Caitlin Bowling
Louisville native Caitlin Bowling has covered the local restaurant and retail scene since 2014. After graduating from the Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, Caitlin got her start at a newspaper in the mountains of North Carolina where she won multiple state awards for her reporting. Since returning to Louisville, she’s written for Business First and Insider Louisville, winning awards for health and business reporting and becoming a go-to source for business news. In addition to restaurants and retail business, Caitlin covers real estate, economic development and tourism. Email Caitlin at [email protected]