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Old Red Pepper Space

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Jessica H

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Old Red Pepper Space

by Jessica H » Thu Apr 12, 2018 11:48 am

Anyone know what is finally going in to the building on Lower Brownsboro that once housed Red Pepper?

They've painted the exterior, and look to have done some work inside as well, but there is no sign up yet. Was just curious if anyone knew anything.
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Robin Garr

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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Robin Garr » Thu Apr 12, 2018 12:08 pm

Funny! We just drove by there this morning and noticed the same thing. :) No answer, but it's tickling the back of my mind that I heard an Indian restaurant is going in. That would make me happy, but I might be just making it up.
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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by GaryF » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:49 pm

That's interesting- it was an Indian restaurant when I first moved here- they won't have to change much of the decor.
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Rich S

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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Rich S » Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:54 pm

The Metro Planning Department website says the business is called Ikebana, and it is applying for a liquor license, so I'd guess it will be a Japanese restaurant.
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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Robin Garr » Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:30 pm

Sounds Japanese all right. Thanks for doing the research, Rich!
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Ross Lister

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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Ross Lister » Fri Apr 13, 2018 5:34 am

Rich S wrote:The Metro Planning Department website says the business is called Ikebana, and it is applying for a liquor license, so I'd guess it will be a Japanese restaurant.


You are correct, I live nearby and stopped to ask when I saw them working on it. I was hoping for an Indian place too but it is Japanese and I think they said they would be open this week.

I'm glad something is finally going in there, its been vacant far too long. My buddy and I used to have to drive to Cincy for Indian food and this was the first big Indian place in Louisville all those years ago. Think it was called Marrakesh or something.

I remember they spent something like $600 per chair for these throne like chairs which was pretty foolish considering the risk of opening an Indian place in Louisville in the 1980's! They did have really good food though!
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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Robin Garr » Fri Apr 13, 2018 7:54 am

Ha! You're mirroring my history, Ross! Mary and I used to go to Cincy for really great Indian food when we couldn't get it here. I can't remember the name of the place, but as I recall it was in a house close to the UC campus.

The "Red Pepper" place was called Maharajah, I'm pretty sure. It was built by an Indian anesthesiologist looking for a place to stash his money, and yes, $500 chairs and a lot of other lavish decor. I believe he remains the owner, and that his monetary expectations from clients have had a lot to do with short-lived tenants and long vacancies. :( Or so the rumor mill goes.
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Ed Vermillion

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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Ed Vermillion » Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:03 am

"I'm glad something is finally going in there, its been vacant far too long. My buddy and I used to have to drive to Cincy for Indian food and this was the first big Indian place in Louisville all those years ago. Think it was called Marrakesh or something."

It was called Maharaja Indian Restaurant and was owned and operated by a pediatric cardiologist named Surjeet Singh Dhanjal who, like others, hated to drive out of town for his dosage of delicious food. He spent lavishly on all aspects of the restaurant, including having the tandoori oven made in India and flown over. Excellent pediatric cardiologist, poor business sense.
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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Robin Garr » Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:24 am

Ed Vermillion wrote:It was called Maharaja Indian Restaurant and was owned and operated by a pediatric cardiologist named Surjeet Singh Dhanjal

Thanks for the more accurate recollection, Ed!
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Ross Lister

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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Ross Lister » Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:30 am

Robin Garr wrote:Ha! You're mirroring my history, Ross! Mary and I used to go to Cincy for really great Indian food when we couldn't get it here. I can't remember the name of the place, but as I recall it was in a house close to the UC campus.

The "Red Pepper" place was called Maharajah, I'm pretty sure. It was built by an Indian anesthesiologist looking for a place to stash his money, and yes, $500 chairs and a lot of other lavish decor. I believe he remains the owner, and that his monetary expectations from clients have had a lot to do with short-lived tenants and long vacancies. :( Or so the rumor mill goes.


The place in Cincy was called Mayura, I remember it well! We used to joke with each other and call the owner Swami as in "let's go up and see Swami this weekend."

He had this annoying habit of coming over to talk to use right as our food arrived. As young men who starved ourselves before driving up for the meal, we just wanted to chow down when it go there and was piping hot!

One day he actually introduced himself and his name was... SWAMI! We about fell out of our cheap chairs laughing!

Funny how far things have come these days. Back in the day we'd have to drive up there for any Indian meal and we'd never be able to get our girlfriends at the time to eat Indian. Now there are plenty of choices right here in Louisville and I see women enjoying it all the time.

Maybe this is a different thread but what is your favorite Indian restaurant here in town Robin?
Last edited by Ross Lister on Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Ross Lister » Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:37 am

My new place in Cincy is Ambar down on Ludlow. btw. I have an affinity for Lamb Curry and they make an amazing one that is almost like a Korma called Lamb Mushroom Curry. Still haven't found a place here in Louisville that makes something similar although I've come close to duplicating it myself at home a few times.
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Ed Vermillion

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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Ed Vermillion » Fri Apr 13, 2018 9:45 am

Robin Garr wrote:
Ed Vermillion wrote:It was called Maharaja Indian Restaurant and was owned and operated by a pediatric cardiologist named Surjeet Singh Dhanjal

Thanks for the more accurate recollection, Ed!


Sorry about that, Robin. Your post popped up before I was finished writing mine. Wasn't meaning to be so pedantic! He still owns the building and yes, the rent was very steep. My Mom was also a pediatric cardiologist and they were in practice together for a few years is the only reason I know the trivia!
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Re: Old Red Pepper Space

by Robin Garr » Fri Apr 13, 2018 11:37 am

You weren't pedantic at all, Ed! I appreciate the better detail. Particularly his speciality. For some reason the idea that he's an anesthesiologist has been floating around since the plan for Maharaja was first announced ... must have been late '80s, because I was still at the paper when it opened, I'm pretty sure.

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