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Lexington’s Atomic Cafe closed down

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Atomic Cafe in Lexington closed its doors for good over the weekend, after being a fixture in Lexington for over two decades. The popular spot on North Limestone had been in business since 1992, but Saturday was its last day.

KSR has many great memories from Atomic over the years. Tomlin worked there in college, and a manager told him he was “the worst busboy in the history of busboys.”

Atomic is also where former UK defensive end DeQuin Evans threatened to bash my face in. He is a lot bigger than me, so I’m glad he did not do that.

Tell us your Atomic memories…

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

24 Comments for Lexington’s Atomic Cafe closed down



  1. Dan
    5:33 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Meh, Dale was a dick, and the concept was old news……



  2. CatDaddy
    5:38 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    well, two weekends ago I was shot in the knee and my friend was shot in the shoulder as we were waiting to get into the bar. good times.



  3. BigAbes4UK
    5:38 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Sad to hear the news. I haven’t lived in Lex Vegas for 11 years now, but that was my favorite summertime bar to frequent. Knew the guys that used to live over the patio and had many many a wondrous night there. Sooo many good memories at this place 🙂 I’m sure someone will revive it- it’s a good spot.



  4. DaleBloeees
    5:48 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Dale once sent me a text that read “Sorry it took so long to get back with you, I do remember thinking when we talked is it re-tard or retarded.” This was after he allowed us to host a charity event at Atomic and he was lookng or $100 extra dollars 5 years after the fact. Good space. This place had real potential if not for a douchey owner and even worse sense of management. Get eff’d , Dale



  5. jame223
    6:27 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    I met my wife there.



  6. Bballdoc
    6:28 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Hey, Dale always treated me great and 2 of my girls worked there. And Dom is a great bartender!



  7. CATandMONKEY
    6:55 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Never knew Dale personally but also I never left the place alone and always enjoyed combustibles with many of the the bands that played there.
    Many great times 96- 2002 during and after professional school.



  8. Ruppeat Offender
    6:57 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Good riddance, Atomic. I hope the next custodian of that awesome patio offers much more than you ever did.



  9. Doug Pelfrey's Facemask
    7:09 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Not sure I knew that’s what it looked like on the outside since I was always at least 12 drinks deep before arriving and it was always dark by then. Bagged my first cougar there.



    • bballdoc
      9:21 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

      Or did she bag you? Just saying …



  10. jpgott2
    7:16 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    I had a bunch of good times from 03-08 at that place, especially in the summer with that patio. What a shame.



  11. racerfan
    7:31 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Rex Chapman’s dad owned a bar on Limestone back in the 90’s–what was the name, “3’s” or something like that?



  12. Hack
    9:33 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    They used to have a drink there in the late 90’s that if you drank it all they gave you the second one. I drank three, rest of the details of the evening are a bit fuzzy (meaning I passed out and threw up later). Good times!



  13. Charlie Warrior
    9:42 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Sad news. One of my favorite Lexington restaurants. Great food too.



  14. bluegrassrebel
    10:46 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    If life goes on without 803 South, then life goes on without Atomic! Suck it up!



  15. Earl and Mildred Skaggs
    11:23 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    Kenny Rogers Roasters is our favorite Lexington restaurant



    • CardFan502
      11:29 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

      I take my fam to Hardees



    • Drew
      1:04 am September 10, 2015 Permalink

      It always cracks me up to see Louisville fans troll this board. Also, a Louisville person would have no clue where to find good food in Lexington. They’ll just drive along Nicholasville Road and chow down on chain central mediocrity. False-paradigm viewing simpletons. Open your mind up a bit.



  16. Hammertime
    11:49 pm September 9, 2015 Permalink

    The maryjuwanna smell coming from over the fence where the artists were chiefin



  17. Drew
    1:01 am September 10, 2015 Permalink

    This place was average at best. Great location, terrible booking, terrible atmosphere. Douchebag central. There’s at least 50 better bars/restaurants than Atomic. My hope is that the owner of Mi’Ire Mon opens up here.



  18. Senator
    10:48 am September 10, 2015 Permalink

    I worked as a waiter at Atomic during my grad school years…my cousin, Dale, was the co-owner. Awesome staff with Steve & O’Shea bartending. Killer patio & music scene in the 90s…once got a $150 dollar tip for reciting every Bill Murray line from ‘Caddyshack’.



  19. Dieter
    11:18 am September 10, 2015 Permalink

    It was OK – mostly hazy weekend evenings spent there after a few elsewhere. Seemed to be a lot of douches mucking about. Not terribly sad to see it go, though I respect the viewpoint of those that will miss it dearly.



  20. kyle heavy
    11:39 am September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Went there EVERY Friday night during the summer.



  21. kyle heavy
    11:42 am September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Also, Mike Hartline tried to fight me here during the summer for no apparent reason. He was such a douche.