Coming Soon: Cropichon et Bidibule

A new 80-seat French bistro opens on Mass Ave this winter.
For French musicians Stephane and Kathy Coueffe, the idea to open a restaurant began in 2008, when they visited Indianapolis for the wedding of Kathy’s sister Mikaele, a cellist who plays in several Central Indiana orchestras. The couple, who both earned crepe-making diplomas, found Indianapolis charming but lacking in opportunities to experience authentic French cuisine. So this summer, when the former Complexions Spa site became available along Mass Ave, it seemed like the perfect chance to relocate closer to Mikaele and open their new 80-seat bistro, Cropichon et Bidibule, this December.
With its exposed crepery, pristine black-and-white decor, and French menu with English translations, the bistro is as much an expression of their culture as it is the cuisine. But classic menu choices such as beef Bourguignon and fish Parisienne will provide a refreshing reintroduction to French gastronomy. A wide selection of savory buckwheat gallettes and delicate sweet crepes, plus a bar offering wine, beer, and ciders, add to the authentic charm. The Coueffes will also develop special menus for holidays and feature live music, with Stephane and musician friends playing traditional French tunes, jazz, and other acoustic styles, and Kathy singing. As for the bistro’s curious name? “Those were the nicknames of our sons, Adrien and Valentin, when they were little,” Stephane says with a chuckle. “I called my brother-in-law Bruce [Klopfenstein], and at first he thought I was joking. But since the restaurant is a true family project, he realized it was perfect.” 735 Massachusetts Ave., 317-682-7758, Facebook page