Indianapolis (east) - casual, inexpensive, perhaps a brewpub? pizza?
I'll be coming to Indy at the end of March for the Science Teacher's convention (yes, all of us nerds in one place!). We're actually staying east of downtown and from what I've been reading, downtown seems more "chainish" which we'd prefer to avoid anyway. We'll have a car and a teacher's budget. My friend and I particularly enjoy trying beers when we travel so a brewpub is always a good choice for us. We're in town for 3 nights so we're looking for several options. Otherwise, we're open for options. Is Indy known for any particular foods that natives love (and usually outsiders find "interesting" - I speak from the experience that no one gets St. Louis pizza but those born here.)
Thanks for your help.
Just wanted to give you a quick report back on my trip. Unfortunately, we really didn't get to enjoy much of Indy food. We got a much later start on our drive and didn't realize there was e time change so we just grabbed something on the road. And I totally forgot about one of our nights in town being a Friday in lent so I wasn't prepared for non-meat options. We actually ended up at the chain, Old Spaghetti Factory which was rather nostalgic for me since I worked at one in college and really haven't gone since.
Our one Indy meal was at Bazbeaux's for pizza. I'm not sure if I read about it directly on a Chowhound thread or in the pizza blog someone recommended. I love pizza in all forms so I'm not the best critic since I'm so easy to please. But we enjoyed our meal quite a bit. The pizza was a bit burnt on the bottom but I appreciated the extra crispiness of that bottom crust. We were disappointed in that there were only 3 beers on tap and the other local beers were only available in cans so we could not taste those. In the end, we decided it was well worth the 2 mile round trip walk from the convention center.
We did pop in to the brewpub, RAM in downtown for a quick beer. I think it's a chain but it wasn't one either of us had seen. I appreciated that they were willing to give us a few tasters of the the beers that appealed to us without having to get the whole sampler containing beers that I knew I wouldn't like. It was a nice place to sit and wait out the storm that blew through.
Your city did a great job with our convention and I really enjoyed walking around the downtown area. I'm working on convincing my husband that he'd enjoy a long weekend there sometime. Thanks!
As someone with family in the burbs in Indy, I look forward to heading downtown or to Broad Ripple.
But since you brought up the east side, I did want to mention that we had dinner in the bar area at The Legend in Irvington last summer and enjoyed it. They had some local beers on tap and the entrees were reasonably priced.
We've also been trying to find a time to check out the cajun place Papa Roux on the far east side when in town, but haven't had a chance....you may want to look that place up. (I know they have a downtown location now too...)
As far as beer goes, there are several breweries with tasting rooms around the city. I've only made it to Flat 12, but I would look that up as well as Sun King and Fountain Square Brewing.
Legends Classic Irvington Cafe
5614 E Washington St, Indianapolis, IN 46219
8950 E 10th St, Indianapolis, IN 46219
Thanks for the links. I guess I hadn't gone far enough back because the 2nd and 3rd threads were more of what I was looking for. Most of the threads I was reading were specifically talking about downtown options which I'd prefer to avoid.
I think we're about 10 miles east of downtown; no idea what that area is called.
I didn't find much specific to pizza or brewpubs. Am I out of luck?
Thanks for the links.
10 miles east of downtown would take you beyond I-465, south of I-70. Sorry, don't know those areas at all.
Have you considered going into town for your conference then staying downtown or going to those areas mentioned further afield of downtown etc - then returning to where you are staying only after all your eating/drinking? True, by rights one of you would have to moderate his/her drinking then on each night...
There are brewpubs downtown with pizza in various places as well. I don't really eat pizza so have never paid much attention to pizza places or pizza offerings. Giorgio's Pizza downtown on E Market St is said to have decent NY style pizza - I've eaten there once , didn't think it was that good nor that it was really NY style (but again I'm not a pizza aficionado). Some people say the pizza at Chatham Tap (on Massachusetts Ave) is great - I've never had it. (Avoid the Fish & Chips there - I found it terrible)
Perhaps others might chip in here.
For brewpubs and gastropubs, look again at that 1st CH thread I mentioned in my previous post;
You don't really say what your upper limit would be in terms of budget - but still, I would consider visiting the Broad Ripple area as one option (the area is mentioned in several/many of the threads and options discussed in them) or the Mass Ave area as another (ditto) and doing whatever kind of pub crawl that might appeal to you. Or going to some of the other (more) stand-alone places. Slippery Noodle Inn is another option for Indy Jazz/Bands (with Indy history in the place) + beer + OK pub food. Also take a second look at the links in this post http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8266... in that "1st CH thread".
p.s. A search on Yelp for "brewpub" or "gastropubs" near Cumberland, IN (11 miles directly due east of downtown Indy) turned up nothing nearby (such that you did not need to drive). Of course, I'm sure there will be some local taverns etc.
Here're the posts regarding pizza from a local food blog: http://indyrestaurantscene.blogspot.c...
Note all of the places except for Giorgio's (which I mentioned above) are outside of downtown, some quite far away.
NB: Indy has a kind-of grid-type street numbering system, with the streets numbered by 0.1 mile separations (very roughly) - so 86th Street is *approximately* 8.6 miles (as the crow flies) directly due north from the intersection of Meridian St & Washington St, one block south of Monument Circle in downtown Indy.