Best Restaurants: Waiting List

A handful of contenders for Top 25 inclusion didn’t open their doors before our deadline. Here, the places we’re keeping a close eye on this year.

Open Society Public House

Brian Baker, a 26-year-old business-school graduate, has spent the past year on an educational tour of the country’s top restaurants in preparation for the launch of his coffee-and-wine bar serving South American food. 4850 N. College Ave., 999-8706,


Last fall, Fletcher Place residents opposed Neal Brown’s proposal to open a Mexican eatery in their neighborhood because of his plans for late-night hours and music. The Pizzology and Libertine owner isn’t budging on his vision, though—he’s been hosting Juanita pop-up brunches and scouring the city for more accommodating environs, hoping to be open sometime this year.

Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse

This year, the Mile Square will welcome another house of meat, Cleveland-based Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse, located inside the historic Illinois Building.

The Livery

Any project that Cunningham Restaurant Group launches runs like a fine-tuned machine—just look at Bru Burger, Mesh on Mass, Union 50, Vida, and its supporting cast of suburban restaurants. Here’s to hoping the winning streak continues with this spot inside a former horse stable. 720 N. College Ave.


Indy fans of modern Mexican food went a little loco when this south-of-the-border chain (with highlights including a dry-rubbed pork chop adorned with orange-habanero demi-glace) opened a location next to Circle Centre. 11 W. Maryland St., 638-6232,

The Mug

Former ExactTarget CEO Chris Baggott is expanding his farm-to-curb drive-in concept just a little over a year after opening the first Mug in Greenfield. Soon, patrons can dine on Baggott’s brand of Hoosier gourmet—burgers, tenderloins, and dolled-up hot dogs—at a second outpost in the heart of Irvington.