Kentucky Hot Brown

The “Hot Brown” also known as the “Kentucky Hot Brown” is a sandwich that originated in the 1920s in the kitchen of the Brown Hotel in Louisville, KY.

In those days, the hotel’s nightly dinner dance attracted over a thousand people! Dancers grew weary by the wee morning hours and would congregate in the restaurant to eat. As the crowds became bored of the traditional menu, the hotel chef, Fred Schmidt, decided to create a new dish to satisfy his hungry guests. And the Hot Brown was born; an open-faced sandwich of turkey, bacon and Mornay sauce, oven-toasted and served hot. Today’s versions often include ham, pimento, parmesan cheese and sliced tomatoes.

Since the time of its origin, the Hot Brown has reached legendary status, becoming a food that is particularly associated with Kentucky. There are now many hot brown recipes online and in cookbooks, and the sandwich has been featured in numerous magazines and on television. Many places serve their own version of the sandwich which is a favorite recipe for many of the region’s gourmet chefs. However, to get the authentic Hot Brown in Kentucky, you only need visit the Brown Hotel, one of the stops on the Hot Brown Hop.