Regional food specialties
- More from Indianapolis
I've already covered more ground in Indy than most any other site and or publication out there. You can check up on past reports HERE and also HERE and HERE. Today I have five more spots to add to my Indianapolis dining guide. If you've never been then you probably don't know. Get familiar.
Located in the Fletcher Place Neighborhood
Perhaps the hottest restaurant in the Midwest, at the very least in Indy, is this boozy brunch spot that was recently named one of the 10 best new restaurants in the Country by Bon Appetit. Normally I tend to stay away from most brunch spots but the recognition along with the menu got me to stop in.
a peek inside
Milktooth is a daytime only operation and they open early for both coffee and pastries. Neither of which I tried on my two separate visits as I'm not a big morning sweets guy and I do not drink coffee. Instead I went straight to the food. The menu consists of a few sections. One is 'Classic Stock' which includes their takes on a bunch of breakfast classics. Another section is titled 'Of the Moment' which lists that days specials. Then theres the 'sides and sweets' section which is just what it reads.
Top: Potato and Yuca Latke - acorn squash jam, local sour cream, scallions Bottom: Himalayan Red Rice Grits - add egg, bacon, and scallions
The cooking style here is very hipster and I mean that in the best way possible. Open air kitchen with guys in beards doing the cooking and having a good time while doing so. Some of the concoctions they come up with are spectacular. Take the potato pancake pictured up above. By adding on a few fancy toppings they made this the best potato pancake I ever came across. Never had Himalayan Red Rice Grits so I'm not sure if they're a real thing or an outstanding creation. So full of flavor.
House Cured Trout with Homemade Cream Cheese on a House English Muffin
My two main courses at Milktooth have both been winners. On my first trip this past summer I wanted something semi light and opted for the house lox served atop a toasted English Muffin. This was the best breakfast sandwich I've had in sometime. The lox was deep in flavor and the muffin had perfect crunch. Then there's the Cuban Lamb Frita Burger. The menu does switch but this winner has remained on it thru time. It takes a wonderful lamb patty and tops it with a fried piece of pineapple and sweet chile ketchup and white American cheese which when molded together makes for a fantastic bite. I suggest you add an egg allowing yolk to slide down into your mouth with each taste.
Cuban Lamb Burger
Jamaican Style Jerk
Despite going to and or thru Indy countless times over the last couple years I never got the chance to go try this well known Jerk Stand that I put onto by a friend of mine at LTH. This is a real city and there's stuff to eat other than burgers, pizza and breaded tenderloins. This place is part of the proof. The owner is from Jamaica and goes back yearly. Always a plus to see the smoke pit on display.
Jerk chicken attached to a liquor store in a parking lot
One day this past summer I was able to head over here right as they were getting started. The friendly owner said what up and told me I came at the perfect time as he just pulled the meats from the smoker. I opted for a lunch special which includes 1/4 chicken and a couple jerk ribs. Rice and Peas and plantains come on the side. All this below was like $7 and it was some of the better jerk chicken I've had in the States. Anything but dry. The ribs were just tender enough to pull easily off the bone and had plenty of smoke in them. My minor complaint was the sauce was slightly off. Other than that, it was still pretty good, this place is a gem that the people of Indy are lucky to have.
Jerk Chicken and Ribs
Pogue's Run Neighborhood
The people behind this semi-new sandwich spot have a history in Indy. They ran this place before moving to Milwaukee where they eventually broke the locals hearts and closed only to move back to Indy. They bring with them a little bit of a different approach this time around as most everything is made in-house, as opposed to by Smoking Goose, which is where owner once worked. I stopped in for a snack and tried the days biscuit ($3). It had an excellent piece of pork belly cooked just right topped with pickled red onions placed on a very soft and semi loose biscuit. I was not expecting the biscuit to be as good as it was as I would've been satisfied with the product if I was down south in Nashville or somewhere like it. This might be the best snack under $5 in town. Check them out.
Pork Belly Biscuit
This popular downtown burger joint is in the mold of many other modern burger shops. It reminded me of both Shake Shack and also Company Burger in New Orleans. Local fresh ingredients, locally brewed beers, walk up place your order and take a seat etc. Here they're doing medium sized griddled patties with some traditional and also some not so normal toppings. Menu has quite a few specialty options or you can build your own burger. I went with the burnt cheeseburger off the specialties as its description was something new to me.
The griddled patty is topped with a mold made of three slices of cheddar cheese cooked on the flattop. The result is a crispy extreme cheeze-it taste along with the other traditional flavors of a classic cheeseburger to cut some of the saltiness of the burnt cheese. The bun was nice and pillowy and the beef flavor was there. Damn good burger.
The Suburb of Greenwood
En route home from Louisville last year I had my eye on this Burmese spot which has been on my radar for a couple years now. All Burmese clientele on my visit, good start. The lady behind the counter was telling me her specialties and finished with mentioning the pork with pickled mango as her most famous dish thus I was sold. I went with an order of samosas to start.
Excellent eats. These were just stuffed with potato and spiced with curry but they were extra crispy on the outside and really smooth inside. I'm not that familiar with Burmese cuisine, other than this excellent cover story over at LTH the only familiarity with it I have was trying a place recommended in Moline, IL. and also a spot in San Francisco and a coming soon with a place in Fort Wayne. That said I loved the meals I ate in Moline and San Fran and enjoyed this dish below every bit as much. It wasn't spicy at all, just full of flavor from the pork and mango, the former of which was maybe the best prep of meat I've ever had at an Asian place. It was extra thin and oh so tender. I'm not sure when life will allow me to make it to Burma, but over in Fort Wayne they have the highest concentration of Burmese people in the States which equates to a few restaurants serving their native cuisine. More on that soon. Hope you enjoyed today's journey. See ya next time my friends.
Pork with Pickled Mango
534 Virginia Ave
Indianapolis, IN 46203
Jamaican Style Jerk
3355 N Keystone Ave
Indianapolis, IN 46218
2829 10th St
Indianapolis, IN 46201
137 East Ohio Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204
1280 South U.S. 31
Greenwood, IN 46142