Photos: Best Restaurants Event 2013

July 25′s party celebrating IM’s 25 Best Restaurants saw nearly 200 guests sipping punch cocktails and enjoying an exquisite tasting hour and three-course meal prepared by some of the best chefs in Indianapolis.

Thursday evening’s Best Restaurants Event, a gastronomic extravaganza featuring many of our 25 Best Restaurants, reached its apex when Abbi and John Adams of Bluebeard—our Restaurant of the Year—presented their crispy lamb rillettes with sweet-corn bordelaise and smoked-tomato gastrique. That third course and others over the course of the night, as well as the prior tasting time, saw delectable plates of food paired with certain wines, beers, and cocktails. (Scroll down to see more photos from the event, or click here. Even more images from the night can be found at our Instagram account or via this search of the #IndyBestRests hashtag on Twitter.)

These eateries took part in the tasting session ahead of the sit-down meal: 10-01 Food & Drink, Bru Burger, Cerulean, Delicia, The Libertine, Meridian Restaurant & Bar, Oakleys Bistro, Taste Cafe & Marketplace, and Tulip Noir. Delicious summery watermelon was a common ingredient among a few dishes.

Later, guests dining on chilled Indiana prawns, beet panna cotta, and much more, with a fantastic view of downtown Indianapolis from the penthouse level of the former Stouffer Hotel, which now houses Courses restaurant where Ivy Tech culinary students learn their trade. Chefs participating in the sit-down portion of the event included JJ Kerns (consulting for Indigo Duck) making the amuse-bouche; Mark Marlar (The Oceanaire Seafood Room) and Ryan Nelson (Late Harvest Kitchen) pairing up on the first course; the tandem of Tyler Herald (Napolese) and Craig Baker (The Local Eatery & Pub) on the second course; the Adamses on the third course; and Ivy Tech pastry instructor Cynthia Hawkins (of Circle City Sweets) and her student team fashioning the desserts, including delicious French macarons with flavors ranging from chocolate to pistachio.

Here’s a look at the evening’s full menu: