Meals We Loved: A Year Of Eating Deliciously

IM editors and contributors relive their favorite Swoons of 2017.

Before we jump fork-first into the new year of local dining, here’s a look back at some of the staff and contributor favorites from 2017. From national media darlings to hidden gems, it was a delicious year to be in Indianapolis.

Joe Ball, Digital Editor
Crudité at Bar One Fourteen (114 E. 49th St., 317-946-0114)
“I’ve always liked vegetables, maybe even loved a few. But I’ve never been moved by the power of vegetables the way David Hoover’s cold platter of crudité left me craving every bite, every fresh flavor. After that magical moment, I only ever want to experience vegetables that same way. I dream of Bar One Fourteen’s crudité.”

Julia Spalding, Dining Editor
Big Bowl Combination Beef Pho at Egg Roll No. 1 (4540 S. Emerson Ave., 317-787-2225)
“I study the menu on the wall every time I stop for food at Egg Roll No. 1, but I always land on the same thing. It’s pure comfort, so warm and aromatic.”

Daniel Comiskey, Deputy Editor
Hop Supremacy by Deviate Brewing (4004 W. 96th St., 317-374-8249)
“It’s hard to believe a strip-mall nano-brewery can produce an IPA that aromatic and balanced.”

Megan Fernandez, Director of Editorial Operations
Poundcake at Festiva (1217 E. 16th St., 317-635-4444)
“There’s enough tropical fruit to fill a Carmen Miranda hat, and it’s presented like dessert as still life. I’m a chocolate person, not a fruity dessert person, but this won me over. The depth of the fruit flavors, the quality of the cake, and the visual delight stuck in my mind for months.”

Michael Rubino, Editor-in-Chief
Mezcal Old Fashioned at Spoke & Steele (123 S. Illinois St., 317-737-1616)

Kelly Kendall, Managing Editor
“The meal I can’t stop thinking about is El Desayuno at The Garden Table (342 Massachusetts Ave., 317-638-0321). It’s kind of like the classic-but-humble dish of chilaquiles, which are popping up at several restaurants now, but the BEST EVER. The tortilla chips are softened just enough—not too hard, not too soggy— and coated in an amazing mole rojo sauce that’s flavorful without being super-spicy. Add queso fresco, some avocado slices, and fresh cilantro, and I’m in heaven. Two modifications: I get it with the egg on top scrambled, instead of sunny-side up, and I just eat around the chicken since I don’t really like eating meat. Brunch perfection.”

Terry Kirts, Contributing Editor
Chargrilled Chicken at Madd Greeks Mediterranean Grille (910 W. 10th St., 317-602-8336)
“The chicken is rich, delectable, and fall-off-the-bone tender at this sleeper surprise restaurant near IUPUI’s campus.”

Suzanne Krowiak, Contributing Editor
Pappardelle with Butcher Shop Bolognese at Bluebeard (643 Virginia Ave., 317-686-1580)
“It’s hard to pick a favorite on chef Abbi Merriss’s menu of standouts, but I had the pappardelle with bolognese in July, and I still think and talk about it five months later. I wish I could tell you every fine detail of the dish, but what I remember most is the perfect balance of rich meat sauce and al dente pappardelle, and the fact that all dinner conversation focused on that plate of pasta once we took the first bite. It was that good.”

Amy Lynch, Contributing Editor
DIY compound butters at Tulip Tree Creamery (6330 Corporate Dr., 317-331-5469)
“The compound butters I made in butter class were so yummy, and completely worth blowing out your calorie count for.”