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Drinks

Sunlight Cream Ale
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Taste Test: IM Drinks Sun King on the Job

Reading Michael Rubino’s Sun King feature in the October issue made us thirsty—so we took our growlers to the brewery and got fill-ups of all the current offerings. And we asked Dave Colt, Sun King’s head brewer, to lead the tasting.

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History on Tap: Upland's Champagne Velvet Returns

If not for the chance discovery of a dusty notebook two decades ago, “Indiana’s most beloved beer of all time”—as beer geeks, historians, and CV cultists call it—might have been lost forever.

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Photos: 2013 Brew-Ha-Ha Festival

The annual suds-and-fundraising event benefits the Phoenix Theatre and featured more than 25 breweries taking part in four hours of beer-swilling fun.

A Guinness draft delivered at the Claddagh Irish Pub downtown—replete with shamrock "stenciled" atop the foam in the bartender
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Top Five Real Irish Pubs

1. Connor’s Pub
6331 Ferguson St., 317-255-5039
The clientele at this Irish dive bar in Broad Ripple ranges from hippies to post-match hurling teams. (Hurling is the national sport of Ireland, you kn

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No. 1 – The Ball & Biscuit

As every lounge in town rolls out its pre-Prohibition cocktail list—muddling herbs and berries until their wrists go limp—you get the feeling that it’s no shtick here.

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No. 2 – The Libertine Liquor Bar

Ordering a cocktail here means sitting back and watching while a dapper bartender in a proper vest and wide-knotted tie tinkers with ice cubes and orange peels. The carefully composed drinks are nothing short of cosmic.

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No. 3 – The Rathskeller

“We restored an icon for the city,” says owner Dan McMichael. “And the city has responded.”

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No. 4 – Red Key Tavern

You’ll still find young hipster couples mingling with octogenarians, and councilmen brokering deals over a beer.

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No. 5 – 1933 Lounge

The stairway to the 1933 (named for the year Prohibition ended) leads back in time. At the top, waitresses in scandalously small red dresses cater to the suits in a lounge that’s as elegant as it is quiet.

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No. 6 – Nicky Blaine's

With no windows in sight, hours can disappear at this Monument Circle man cave, one of the last bastions for cigar-smokers in the city.

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No. 7 – Bluebeard

The cocktail menu changes seasonally, so don’t go looking for “the usual.” And the bar offers high-concept snacks ranging from charcuterie to pickles.

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No. 8 – The Brass Ring Lounge

Years before the speakeasy trend made its way to Indy full force, this establishment featured Jazz Age photos on the wall and classic cocktails like the Sazerac.

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No. 9 – The Chatterbox Jazz Club

This tiny joint is a total dive. But the jazz musicians who perform there, and the toe-tapping art-schoolers and wine-sipping literati who crowd the shotgun bar to hear them, really class things up.

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No. 10 – Wellington Pub

There are plenty of other holes-in-the-wall in Indy, and you can’t throw a dart (another Wellington pastime) without hitting a corporate bar marketing itself as a British-themed pub. But the leaded glass and woodwork here make most of those other places seem like a trip to the loo.

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No. 11 – Radio Radio

It has built a reputation for being the place to knock back a few drinks while taking in the best indie rock you haven’t heard yet.

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