never gets tired of making sandwiches. Even as a kid growing up in Lafayette, he got excited when his mother, who brought the family together over big Polish dinners and chop suey nights, asked him to make his own sandwiches for his school lunches. But he never figured he’d one day open funky, playfully creative delis in two Midwestern cities. The affable avid skateboarder spent his adolescence playing in bands and majoring in film studies at Purdue University. It wasn’t until he landed a position at Indy’s Goose the Market in 2008, creating some of the weekly sandwiches, that he really found his life’s calling.
In 2012, Benedyk moved to Milwaukee with wife Ally, a former Recess server and pastry chef, to open a cafe. They operated the hit small-plate and sandwich joint Love Handle for more than two years, but they always planned to return here one day. “We figured if we could open a restaurant in an unfamiliar place, we could do it back home,” Benedyk says. This summer, they found their opportunity when a defunct Subway became available at 10th and Oxford streets. Now Indy folk can get a taste of Love Handle’s quirky creations, like “Egg on Top of Head Cheese Mountain” and Taleggio ice cream with dried figs. 2829 E. 10th St., 317-430-5004
Chris Benedyk’s Favorite Things
1. Olives: “I like them at all levels, from Picholines to the black ones in a can.”
2. Kronenbourg 1664 beer: “It’s from France!”
3. Szechwan Garden: “I can’t get enough of their beef tendon.”
4. Homemade instant-coffee mayo: “It’s great with whey-fed testa, which is an Italian head cheese, and pickled cactus.”
This article appeared in the October 2015 issue.