With its street-level location beneath a downtown Indianapolis parking garage, adjacent to the multi-level Circle Centre Mall, Ram Restaurant and Brewery is an easily-accessible lunch and dinner option for shoppers and business professionals alike. The facility’s red-brick exterior, which holds an oversized mock brewery kettle drum, makes Ram easy to find at its South Illinois Street location. An obvious focus on the craft beer industry and locally-created seasonal brews can be found on the menu, making Ram a popular after-work stop, where visitors can even sit outside and enjoy the hustle and bustle of city life. Tucked inside, menu options vary from steaks, ribs and seafood to fire-grilled burgers, unique sandwiches and various gluten-free selections. Child-friendly items are also available.
Naturally, the chefs at Cooper’s Hawk have a sharp eye when it comes to wine pairings. Each of the restaurant’s contemporary dishes is crafted with a particular wine in mind, which makes plenty of sense given the fact that there’s a winery located just next door. Surrounded by oaken barrels and racks lined with glistening bottles, diners may be forgiven for thinking that they made a wrong turn and ended up in the winery itself. After your meal, see the real thing in the Napa–style tasting room, where you can sample up to eight different wines. The selection includes something for everyone, including graceful blush wines and cabernets whose flavors unfold like a novel scribbled on the wings of an origami crane.
When Harmony Winery co-owner Kevin Croak was a teenager growing up on Long Island, he experimented with making wines from sugar and the juice of wild berries. "I used to hide them in the cemetery behind my house, hoping my dad wouldn't find them," Croak told the Indianapolis Star. "But I didn't understand about fermentation, and the bottles blew up." Luckily for visitors to the cozy tasting room and winemaking studio, Harmony Winery has mastered all aspects of the vino-crafting process. Now, they invite their guests to do the same through fun, informative classes and you-make-it bottling sessions.
Clients stop in to sample some of Harmony's 35 different vintages amid luxurious leather sofas, a warm fireplace, and friendly company, pairing their wines with fine chocolates and seasonal dinner selections. Guests can cozy up to a tasting bar or commune in an event space outfitted with a big-screen TV and surround sound. Aspiring vintners hone their crafts with the winery's extensive selection of supplies, which includes custom labels for weddings or holidays, bohemian-crystal decanters for letting wine breathe, and vacuum pumps for trapping wine-spoiling poltergeists. Harmony Winery also demonstrates how cost-effective and healthy homemade wine can be, and how self-crafted vino can have lower levels of tannin and sulfites.
The story of Mallow Run Winery reads like a Steinbeck novel with a happy ending—a tale of romance, music, and farm life. John Richardson grew up on the 600-acre plot where Mallow Run now resides, but left for 35 years to become a teacher. During this time, he raised his son, Bill, whose dream of following the pastoral path of his ancestors led him to pursue a degree in Agriculture at Purdue University. After he graduated and his father retired, they both returned to John’s stomping ground with the intent of growing grapes for various Indiana wineries. Bill would meet his wife, Laura, while playing music locally in the Carmel Symphony—the former on French horn and the latter on clarinet—and thus, the triumvirate behind Mallow Run Winery was born.
Between the bushels of corn and soybeans that spring from the verdant fields, eight acres of grapevines produce the plump fruit that goes into bottles of Chardonel, Traminette, Seyval Blanc, and other varietals, and the tailpipes of any double-parked cars on the estate. The winery has become a destination to listen to live music in addition to sipping wine with friends and family, as the winery’s spacious lawn is often used for concerts from local artists.
Powered by than more 5 score of collective experience, the staff members at Great Fermentations share their technical know-how with the public through classes and an intimate knowledge of the store's merchandise. Beginner-friendly beer and wine courses teach fundamentals of tasty beverage creation, overviewing the process, ingredients, sanitation, and how to do a proper keg stand. A huge selection of beer and wine making supplies makes it easy for alumni to go forth and prosper with all the appropriate equipment and ingredients. Great Fermentations also stocks provisions for creating homemade sodas, wines, and a variety of cheeses.
Real meat has a story. This is one of the founding principles at Goose the Market, where the meat does, in fact, have a tale to tell, albeit a short one without many characters. That’s because Goose works directly with Indiana farmers, who slaughter their all-natural livestock mere hours or days before delivering its meat to the market. As a result, the shop’s customers always know where their meat comes from and how it was raised.
The neighborhood market of bygone eras was always the place to go if you wanted a good sandwich. Goose has picked up that torch with its own roster of sandwiches—Bon Appetit magazine even placed it on its list of Top 10 Sandwich Shops in the country in 2008. The “standout sandwich” then, and now, is the Batali, named after Armandino Batali, a famous salumi maker. This Italian creation features spicy coppa, soppressata, capicola, tomato preserves, and hot giardiniera for an extra kick.
The enoteca—an Italian word for "wine repository"—at Goose resides in the basement. Here, a rotating menu of wines shares space with a wide selection of craft beers. In keeping with the market's passion for all things local, the enoteca houses communal tables for neighbors to meet up over small plates of artisanal cheese or charcuterie.