Image courtesy of Varnese. | Photo by Dan Dry

Chef John Varanese is giving local diners the opportunity to experience all three of his restaurant concepts during his inaugural Varanese Progressive Dinner. According to a news release, the event will happen next Thursday, Jan. 26, when two separate guest seating options begin at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.

The evening will feature a three-course dinner paired with Four Roses bourbon cocktails for $70 per person plus tax and gratuity. Transportation to each restaurant will be provided by Mint Julep Tours. Participants will park their car at River House Restaurant and Raw Bar (3015 River Road), where they’ll begin their dining experience with appetizers and a craft bourbon cocktail in the garden area.

Next, they’ll board the shuttle for a short ride to Varanese (2106 Frankfort Ave.), where they’ll enjoy a second bourbon cocktail alongside their choice of one of Varanese’s bestselling entrées: the bourbon barrel smoked pork chop, caramelized orange bourbon salmon, or beef tips and tortellini.

After the entrée, the shuttle will take attendees to Levee at the River House, where they’ll finish the evening with dessert and a bourbon cocktail while enjoying live entertainment from one of Louisville’s favorite bands.

“Planning this event gave me the chance to reflect on the past 10 years and appreciate how fortunate I am to see my three different visions come to life,” said John Varanese. “I’m so proud of Varanese and my team there, where we continue to strive for innovation in the kitchen and showcase bourbon, both at the bar and in the menu. And with the opening of River House and Levee, I was able to fulfill my long-time dream of bringing a riverside dining option to Louisville.”

Reservations are required with a credit card and can be made by calling 502-899-9904 or e-mailing