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Old 03-20-2012, 12:42 AM
 
Location: Portland, OR
18 posts, read 21,141 times
Reputation: 24

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I've been in the greater Portland, OR metro area for the past couple of years and although I have a job that I enjoy to a reasonable degree I've come to the point where I can no longer stand the Portland scene. Homeless is not hip, pot isn't a way to expand your mind, and if you are young and able you shouldn't be working 15 hours a week and living with 12 roommates!

Needless to say I'm scouting for a new location. I'm a bit of a wanderer so I don't get too stressed by the idea of a complete change of scenery. But I do have to make a living and a life where ever I land so I have a few non-routine questions:

First question: baked goods. I'm a pastry chef and baker. I'm well versed in all the things we like to eat up in the northlands but what about down south...? I'm not sure what to brush up on. Pies, cupcakes, french macaroons? I tend toward classic French but I could wipe the dust off my old home styles if I needed to.

Second question: ok i'm gonna own my ignorance; I've never been to Kentucky. Ive been to Atlanta, Tulsa, Orlando, New Orleans, Cincinnati, New York, Denver, Omaha, Minnapolis, etc. etc but never Kentucky...what's the typical genre if people who live there? I'm pretty adaptable so i'm not overly concerned about not fitting in but I'd like to know if things like tattoos, gauges, and facial piercings are gonna be an issue...? If everyone tends toward conservative or if it's an even spattering of liberal? If it's red necks for days or an urban sprawl of Coach and Jimmy Choo. Personally I'm converse and hoodies. I just want to make sure I'm not gonna run into a scene from Deliverance I guess, but on the other hand I grew up on a ranch so I'm not entirely out of touch with the country life either...

Last but not least: groceries. I love fresh veggies, fresh fruit, wine, organic grains ...etc. etc. and honestly not a lot of meat. How's the fresh produce section look in your average grocery store....and off the average store doesn't cover me, how far and few between are specialty stores?

I have till August to pick where I'll be for the next couple years, I just need info to make the decision. Thanks for your replies. I appreciate your time.
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:16 AM
 
Location: Lexington, Kentucky
12,858 posts, read 6,563,333 times
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I use to live in Louisville, and have never seen anything like out of Deliverance, lol.
Kentucky has a lot of farms and therefore, some great Farmer's Markets. I live in Lexington and they are wonderful. the Grocery stores are good too for Produce, but I love to buy fresh from Farmer's Markets myself as much as possible.
Honestly, I haven't been to bakery to get pastry type stuff in years (decades maybe) so I can't answer the question, on what pastry type stuff is popular. Great Harvest Bread Company is great though, where you can buy the fresh made whole grain breads.
I would imagine the cost of living in Kentucky would be much less than in Portland.
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Old 03-20-2012, 05:49 AM
 
Location: downtown phoenix
1,208 posts, read 1,766,354 times
Reputation: 1959
great foodie scene in louisville. appearance shouldn't be a problem in certain parts of town.
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Old 03-20-2012, 06:27 AM
 
Location: Louisville KY Metro area
4,826 posts, read 13,803,962 times
Reputation: 2146
It is time for the "Deliverance" connotation to go away about Kentucky. If I remember correctly, one of the Rambo movies was set in Oregon's back country. Same for every state in the Union except for maybe RI or DE.

I will replay the broken record which I replay here many times. Come to Kentucky, learn about us before you judge us. Join us, enjoy us, laugh with us, cry with us, and celebrate with us. We are a good people when you accept us, and when you do, we'll embrace you no matter your postion or style of life.
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:49 PM
 
Location: "Daytonnati"
4,244 posts, read 6,821,734 times
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Here is something on the local food scene: Edible Louisville. Local sourcing has become a big thing in Louisville, tho I think this is a national trend.

Also check out Robin Garrs Louisville Hotbytes to get a feel on the restaurant scene

(you might want to post your question on their forums, too).

BTW, Deliverence was set in the Georgia mountains, I do believe. The only area that is very backwoods near Louisville is probably the hill country ("the Knobs") of nearby Bullitt County. You can check out this link to the big attraction down there to get a feel for the local vibe: Knob Creek Range

Louisville has a few bakers...the one I miss was Hans, who was an Austrian pastry chef who had a very popular place in Hikes Point years and years ago. So we could always use more. People in Louisville like to go out to eat and appreciate good food (if the number of restaurants are an indicator) so you are coming to the right place if you are in the cooking/baking trade.
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Old 03-21-2012, 10:34 AM
 
2,391 posts, read 4,741,708 times
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I've lived here all of my life and a lot of people of other states always peg us wrong like we are back in the hills or hillbillies. We have all you have in a large city, just on a smaller scale as I see it. We have performances you would see in NYC from huge stars like Liza Minnelli. Anyways, we have all walks of life that you have or see in a large city so don't feel that you wouldn't fit in. Ya never know but you may fall in love with Louisville~!
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:35 PM
 
Location: Near L.A.
4,111 posts, read 10,294,830 times
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Portland to Louisville?!

Unless you move to a small chunk inside I-264 and within a 1-mile radius of I-64, you might as well be moving to Florida, or Los Angeles, or D.C., or Birmingham in terms of how different the place will be.

Stick to the "chunk": Highlands, Original Highlands, Clifton, Crescent Hill, and parts of Germantown and Butchertown. Maybe consider downtown and St. Matthews. I used to say Old Louisville until about four years ago but I think they've had some crime problems since then. You could also consider New Albany, IN across the river.

Sadly, unlike Portland and other West Coast cities like L.A., O.C. and the Bay Area (where I live), there aren't any real "cutesy" suburbs that are sustainable and feel like small towns while still being easily accessible to the city center. La Grange and Bardstown might be the closest thing, but it's basically they're poorly grown historic, albeit nice, small towns that are 45-60 minute drives from downtown when traffic sucks. That is one thing you'll need to keep in consideration should you move to the Louisville area, like it and want to stay.

On the other hand, the COL is significantly cheaper, in large part because Kentucky doesn't have all the draconian environmental and business regulations of Oregon (and California). However, Kentucky's business climate hasn't exactly thrived in recent decades, even in the 1990s, because surrounding states such as Indiana, Tennessee and Virginia have offered better higher education systems (and more graduates from such) and better business climates, so Kentucky doesn't excel in the job market category.

Oh, and once you get away from Louisville (generally at least Frankfort, Elizabethtown and beyond), people in Kentucky are considerably friendlier, at least on the surface, than people on the West Coast, so you have that to look forward to. I don't generally find people from Greater Louisville (roughly ten county region) to be particularly friendly or even polite. The drivers are terrible there, too.

The weather sucks. Get used to it. Unless it's a 60-80 degree sunny day with low (think 50-70%, that's low for there) humidity, then it can really be heavenly. Just this March alone, Kentucky has gone from raging thunderstorms and huge tornadoes, to 4-6" of snow, to 75-80 degree sunny days!

A lot of people in the Kentucky fora on C-D don't like me because I don't wear rose-colored glasses. I encourage you to fly in from Portland for a visit and check the place out for yourself--many people either love or hate Louisville and Kentuckiana (contraction for KY and southern IN). I do miss my rural Kentucky roots sometimes and I'm never embarrassed to admit where I'm from, so I do my part to impart some advice. But I'd like to stay on the coast for a while.
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Old 03-22-2012, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Charlotte/Mebane, NC and Suitland, MD
26,299 posts, read 39,200,604 times
Reputation: 39552
Quote:
Originally Posted by EclecticEars View Post
Portland to Louisville?!

Unless you move to a small chunk inside I-264 and within a 1-mile radius of I-64, you might as well be moving to Florida, or Los Angeles, or D.C., or Birmingham in terms of how different the place will be.

Stick to the "chunk": Highlands, Original Highlands, Clifton, Crescent Hill, and parts of Germantown and Butchertown. Maybe consider downtown and St. Matthews. I used to say Old Louisville until about four years ago but I think they've had some crime problems since then. You could also consider New Albany, IN across the river.

Sadly, unlike Portland and other West Coast cities like L.A., O.C. and the Bay Area (where I live), there aren't any real "cutesy" suburbs that are sustainable and feel like small towns while still being easily accessible to the city center. La Grange and Bardstown might be the closest thing, but it's basically they're poorly grown historic, albeit nice, small towns that are 45-60 minute drives from downtown when traffic sucks. That is one thing you'll need to keep in consideration should you move to the Louisville area, like it and want to stay.

On the other hand, the COL is significantly cheaper, in large part because Kentucky doesn't have all the draconian environmental and business regulations of Oregon (and California). However, Kentucky's business climate hasn't exactly thrived in recent decades, even in the 1990s, because surrounding states such as Indiana, Tennessee and Virginia have offered better higher education systems (and more graduates from such) and better business climates, so Kentucky doesn't excel in the job market category.

Oh, and once you get away from Louisville (generally at least Frankfort, Elizabethtown and beyond), people in Kentucky are considerably friendlier, at least on the surface, than people on the West Coast, so you have that to look forward to. I don't generally find people from Greater Louisville (roughly ten county region) to be particularly friendly or even polite. The drivers are terrible there, too.

The weather sucks. Get used to it. Unless it's a 60-80 degree sunny day with low (think 50-70%, that's low for there) humidity, then it can really be heavenly. Just this March alone, Kentucky has gone from raging thunderstorms and huge tornadoes, to 4-6" of snow, to 75-80 degree sunny days!

A lot of people in the Kentucky fora on C-D don't like me because I don't wear rose-colored glasses. I encourage you to fly in from Portland for a visit and check the place out for yourself--many people either love or hate Louisville and Kentuckiana (contraction for KY and southern IN). I do miss my rural Kentucky roots sometimes and I'm never embarrassed to admit where I'm from, so I do my part to impart some advice. But I'd like to stay on the coast for a while.
While he isn't popular here Eears does make very accurate suggestions. I'm a transplant myself from the DC area and what is quoted is very true.

Another thing to consider, if you have bad allergies, this is NOT a good place for you. My mother has sinus issues from her Air Force days and doctors have told her straight that the Ohio Valley is not where she needs to be. Louisville is one of the worst cities in the allergy catergory.

Oh yeah. I personally do not think the produce section is that good in most chain grocery stores in Louisville.
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Old 03-22-2012, 08:26 PM
 
Location: Louisville, KY
30 posts, read 87,385 times
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Well having moved here from Seattle it is a colossal change and I consider myself to be somewhat of a risk taker and adventurous (I lived in India for nearly a year but that's another story). I've spent 8 years in Louisville and I honestly consider it a second home, but it's taken me a long time to embrace it as such.

Things that come to mind that you might miss are:
Being near the water and mountains
Skiing
Diversity of people
Great supermarkets
Unique bookstores (and lack thereof)
Pro sports teams
Authentic teriyaki and good Asian cuisine
Fresh seafood
Ability to be transparent without a lot of judgment

I am in 100% agreement with the Ohio Valley wreaking havoc on your sinuses! I never had allergies until I moved here.
The food scene is quite good here but not to the degree that you're used to. That goes for the fine arts as well. I will say that as much as people complain about the weather here in Louisville being gray it's nothing compared to Seattle/Portland. I absolutely love having 4 seasons. The summers are steaming hot here--although not unbearable.
I think you should visit for a week and explore the city and get a feel for it so you can see for yourself if you think it's a fit. It's a different culture here for sure. I didn't fully appreciate it until I moved to South FL for 2 years and it was then that I realized what a gem Louisville was! No, it doesn't have the hip vibe of Seattle/Portland. Nor is it as healthy and outdoor loving as the Northwest, but it a city that has more of a town feel to it and there is an optimism here that is lacking in Seattle. There are plenty of positives here in Louisville that will compare with what you're used to in Portland and some good local bakeries! If you are skilled in vegan, organic, and gluten free there is definately a market for that here. Although as a classic pastry chef you will do well I'm sure.
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Old 03-22-2012, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Louisville, KY
30 posts, read 87,385 times
Reputation: 20
ETA I live in the "chunk" that was referred to earlier (Crescent Hill for me) and I agree that you'll probably want to live/work in this part of Louisville. Almost forgot to address your questions. Piercings and tattoos are no problem. And Louisville is a mix of conservative and liberal but leans more liberal IMO whereas the smaller communities surrounding Lou tend to be more conservative. I live in a pretty liberal area of Lou yet I am more of a conservative and it's no problem for me, I love my liberal friends!

Last edited by msblossom; 03-22-2012 at 09:07 PM..
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