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Knotty Pine on the Bayou
Ranked #1 of 20 Restaurants in Cold Spring
Certificate of Excellence
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Alexandria, Kentucky, United States
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 14, 2014

Qualifier: I come from a restaurant family, worked in NY and FL in 3-4 star places and worked front and back of house for many yrs. so I know food and service.

I have to say I am really mad at myself. we have lived in the area for over 10 yrs and have thought to go there a few times and did not. kicking myself now as I think about how many wonderful (and close to home) meals I have missed. Living in Alexandria usually means a 25-50 minute drive for good food. with that said.

This place is busy if you don't have reservations on a weekend forget it. (call ahead to be sure)

we were sat within less than 10 minutes of our reservation time (party of 2).
promptly greeted and drinks received, in fact service was very good throughout (thanks Zack!). they actually have busboys/girls something nearly non existent anymore.

for an App we tried the crab cakes and Etouffee. the 2 crab cakes was perfectly done with a "blackened" but not overly spicy pan sear. good mixture of crab and stuffing (perhaps a tad more crab or left a bit chunky would be better) and the roulade served with it was perfect.

the Etouffee was one of the best I have had and well worth the $7.95 a cup. no one spice was over powering a well blended flavor explosion with lots of crab/mud bugs (crawfish). my wife who is not the slightest bit adventurist loved it.

We both had salads, sadly missing was tomatoes but the mixed greens were good and the inclusion of radish a pleasant surprise. I got the blue cheese and was happy to see the large amount of real blue cheese chunks.

My wife ordered blackened Halibut (we asked for light blackening and received exactly that). it was the largest piece of a high end fish ($15-20 a lb) I have ever seen served at a restaurant (about 2x what you get at Chart House), of course that put a smile upon my face as I knew I would get 1/2. She had the boiled potatoes and green beans, both excellent. the fish flaked apart as it should yet still moist.

I ordered the Cajun sampler as I really wanted to see what this place could do with various items.
I was not disappointed. chicken, shrimp and Filet, each with their own seasonings each very good. the chicken could have used a little more "heat" but that's personal preference. I am a big eater and there was a large amount of food, add to that it comes with red beans and rice and gumbo both were awesome and each flavored differently with some heat but not over bearing at all. again no one spice stood out but had a balance of flavors.

as if that wasn't enough food already they make their desserts in house so we had to try.
we got the Key Lime Pie, this is REAL key lime (not that gross green stuff you might find some places, right Zack?) it had a perfect blend of sweet and tangy with that little "bite" at the end from the limes.
we also had the chocolate opera cake. I am not a big fan of opera crème but those of you who are this is for you. the raspberry drizzle made it. the cake was very moist. its so sweet I think a scoop if vanilla ice cream would help.

the only downside to the place is its very loud. its not a good first few dates place. been married awhile? go!

they have an outdoor patio not sure if they serve out there or not.. if so that would be much quieter and an ok look at the Licking river.

we now have added a place to our top 10 and it makes into the top 5, I don't think we will be going to Pappadeaux's nearly as much now. and to think this little gem was right down the road the whole time.. ARGHHH..

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Scott C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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90 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Cincinnati, Ohio
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Not good.”
Reviewed February 22, 2014

On time for a 7:00 reservation for a table of eight. One hour later we were seated. No water, no wait staff for a good fifteen minutes. Orders finally placed, delivered after 9:00pm. cold. Really? You have my phone number. Call me and tell me that it's not happening. I'll understand and be glad that you were courteous. I've had many pleasant experiences at this restaurant, current location and the original many years ago. Can't say what happened in the mean time. If you drink bud light, smoke cigarettes and like cold fish then this is your heaven. I had out of town guests. Trying to show them a good time and good food. I won't be back.

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Jack R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
28 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Knotty Pine”
Reviewed February 11, 2014 credit card Amex Card Member Review

Great little restaurant/bar.
The food is great, and friendly service.
The frog legs are my new favorite. You can get them as an appetizer or as a dinner.

Visited January 2014
Thank TomV55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Merton, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
151 reviews
95 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
“Nice find!”
Reviewed February 8, 2014

Since moving to the area, my wife and I have been looking for a local "mom and pop" type of restaurant and finally found the Knotty Pine based on a recommendation of a co-worker. We both enjoyed our meals. I had the catfish and my wife had the peel and eat shrimp. I liked the collard green and the salad. I had the Cajun Gumbo which was just OK. My wife had the Red Beans and Rice and it was very good. The entree servings were a little on the small side for the price paid. We shared the Opera Creme Cake. It was decent but wouldn't order it again. We will definitely return and are especially looking forward to going there in the Summer when you can see the river.

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank bhighlande
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Mitchell, Kentucky
Level Contributor
143 reviews
91 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Great Place”
Reviewed January 15, 2014

If you are looking for above average Cajun food in the Tri-State this is the place. The food is excellent, service is great and the atmosphere can't be beat. Went with two other couples and we tried a bunch of different dishes. Between us we tried the following and all were excellent. Oysters Beinville, frog legs, shrimp boil, Cajun sampler and shrimp etouffee. The Cajun sampler comes with read beans and rice and gumbo, both were excellent. The only thing we tried that I'm not able to rate very high are the crab cakes. I'm a fan of the lump softball size cakes you get in Baltimore, not the hockey puck size deep fried one they serve. Either way they were edible. Definitely check this place out if you are looking for something unique.

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Tyler H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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