I second India House, it fits your definition of ethnic eats and it's got a strangely formal atmosphere (i.e. tuxedo waiters) for a family restaurant.
And along the lines ethnic, Vermilion and Vong's Thai Kitchen are both on Hubbard and has great ethnic/fusion take on things.
As for hipstery haunts, the James Hotel is a tiny posh bar that has a very trendy looking crowd. There's not going to be tremendous amount of alt-culture near downtown, Pete Oldtown is right on the money -- go west and north for the true skinny jeans crowd.
I'd go to Lou Mitchell's for breakfast. It's been there since about 1932 and people with layovers on Amtrak have been going there forever. You see whole Amish families on their way somewhere from Indiana, the line can be long but it moves fast, and it's just something out of the past. The food is great. I highly recommend their bacon and sausage, all made locally.
I'm too old to be a hipster, but Lula's Cafe in Logan Square makes my daughter's heart go pitter pat. Her birthday is today and we're going there tonight and then to see Shearwater at The Mansion. It's a fun neighborhood. Wicker Park has a ton of stuff you would like, probably. There are a bunch of places on lower Milwaukee and at the Division/Damen intersection.
Here's something pretty accurate I found.