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Moving to North Indianapolis/Carmel Area

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I'm moving to the Northy Indy/Carmel area so I'm looking for some recommendations of places, generally take-out or casual. Especially: an Indian restaurant, a pizza place and any other fast and/or casual places. It seems like there are a lot of chains in the area so any independently owned, local or regional places are preferred. Mostly I'm looking for places north of 71st street but I'll take recommendations all over if the food is good! Thanks!

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  1. A query: are you looking for independent fast-food places, independent take-out joints, and independent pizza places? $$$ ranges? I take it you are not asking for high-end dining? How far north from 71st Street* into Carmel? How far east or west of Meridian? How "good" does it need to be before you will drive/travel "all over"?

    Here are two idiosyncratic local blogs (IMO definitely Americanized personal tastes in them) that may be useful to look at for possible answers to some of your take-out/pizza, fast/casual queries:
    http://indyrestaurantscene.blogspot.com/
    http://wouldibuyitagain.com/ (This one also has a lot of reviews of chains)

    * BTW that excludes a lot of good indy places around, such as the ethnic enclaves around the 38th Street/Lafayette area; or Broad Ripple and SoBro around 62nd Street and below.

    Have you looked on these boards for recommendations in previous threads? :-)

    3 Replies
    1. re: huiray

      Thanks for the blog suggestions. I looked a little on the boards but I didn't want to go back more than a year or two because I know restaurants can change a lot in a short span of time. I didn't see a lot there that was specific to the northern area.

      Take-out is probably what I'll be doing, but of course these days almost anything can be ordered carry-out. My typical beat is between 71st and 161st, and Michigan Rd to Allisonville Rd. My budget is smallish, under $15. I need a couple solid places for nights I'm not cooking and I like to support local independent restaurants. Specifically, I said pizza and Indian, but certainly other things are great, I like to mix it up.

      I'm need to find my go-to pizza place and was hoping someone could steer me towards a few recommendations. I've been to Bazbeaux and wasn't all that impressed despite the rave reviews from my family. Looks like Indy Restaurant Scene has some good recommendations. Pizzology and Tony Sacco's look good. Any opinions or other suggestions there?

      I am desperate for something to replace my old home favorite Indian restaurant. I noticed Amber Indian on the map and I was wondering if there were thoughts on it or other options. I'd take something outside my radius if it is awesome because Indian is my favorite cuisine, definitely worth traveling for.

      I'm also interested exploring other parts of Indy on the weekends, which is when I might venture into Broad Ripple and further downtown, but perhaps that's a question for another time.

      Thanks for your help!

      1. re: ellen2321

        Pizzology is fine. I haven't eaten at Tony Sacco's.

        There is a local chain called Bella Pizzeria which has two locations within your preferred area - on 96th St (3855 E. 96th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46240) and Clay Terrace (14550 Clay Terrace Blvd, Carmel, IN 46032). http://www.thebellapizza.com/ I've eaten once from the 96th St place. I'm not that much of a pizza aficionado so others could help you better.

        I've not eaten at Amber Indian. I don't get to Clay Terrace much, nor to Carmel with any great frequency. There's a place called India Sizzling on Allisonville before 116th that seems to receive relatively recent positive reviews but I haven't eaten there for some years. Just beyond your area I've also eaten at Taj of India (5929 82nd Street Indianapolis, IN 46250) just past Allisonville Rd, at the Castleton shops on the south side of 86th opposite the Castleton Square complex. OK, not the world's greatest, a little heavy with the cream to my taste but others seem to like it a lot.

        Do you like Thai or Chinese/"Chinese-type"/East Asian food? Within your ranges I could recommend some places I like.

        Consider exploring/trawling along the 86th Street Corridor between Michigan and Allisonville, there are many other places along there that may be to your liking. Ditto 96th Street between Keystone and Allisonville, to a lesser extent.

        BTW I think you are from Dayton, OH? If so perhaps you might be interested to know that within your area there is a Skyline Chili outlet on 86th on the north side just before Michigan Rd. (at 3524 West 86th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46268)

        1. re: ellen2321

          While I'm thinking of it let me also suggest Hollyhock Hill within your area & range for fried chicken done in lard. This is a "local institution", a "Midwest institution" even. On College Ave down just a bit from 86th Street (it's between 82nd and 81st). Their carry-out menu: http://www.hollyhockhill.com/carry-ou...

      2. Not from the area but have stayed in the north end of Indy a handful of times. For a nice casual dining experience (bar and grill) Friendly Tavern in Zionsville is great. We went there because people raved about their pork tenderloin sandwiches and they were fantastic. The wings were very good too.

        DT