Cafe Patachou (225 W. Washington St., 317-632-0765, open 7 a.m.–3 p.m.)
Martha Hoover is an original gangster of the local food scene, opening the first Cafe Patachou at 49th and Pennsylvania in 1989.
Our pick: The omelette of the day and cinnamon toast.
Napolese (30 S. Meridian St., 317-635-0765 , open 5 p.m.–10 p.m.)
Hoover expanded her Patachou kingdom with Napolese, where pizzas emerge from the stone hearth oven blistered and bubbling.
Our pick: Elliot’s Pie with pancetta, roasted potatoes, and gorgonzola cheese.
Bee Coffee Roasters (201 S. Capitol Ave., 317-426-2504, open 7 a.m.–3 p.m.)
B.J. Davis is the godmother of the local coffee scene. Bee Coffee focus on light roasts and meticulously trained baristas.
Our pick: One of the lattes (as pretty as they are tasty).
Circle City Sweets (Indianapolis City Market, 317-632-3644, open 8 a.m.–2 p.m.)
Cindy Hawkins does pastries in a French tradition.
Our pick: Chocolate croissant.
Mambo’s Cheesesteak Grill (Indianapolis City Market, 317-929-1180, open 8 a.m.–2 p.m.)
Carla McDaniel combines American favorites with the flavors of her native homeland of Lima, Peru.
Our pick: Lomo sandwich with sirloin steak, onions, tomatoes, cilantro, fries, and aji sauce.
The Tamale Place (Indianapolis City Market, 317-248-9771, open 10 a.m.–4 p.m.)
Angela Green fell in love with traditional Mexican cuisine after a solo backpacking trip through the country.
Our pick: Poblano chile and cheese tamale combo with rice, tortilla chips, and salsa.
The Garden Table (342 Massachusetts Ave., 317-737-2531, open 8 a.m.–3 p.m.)
Partners Jessie Kelley and Sarah Simon just opened a Mass Ave location of the busy Broad Ripple hangout.
Our pick: A juice flight and Granola Gangster bowl with yogurt, honey, berries, and hemp seeds.
The Ball & Biscuit (331 Massachusetts Ave., 317-636-0539 , open 4 p.m.–2 a.m.)
Operating partner and bartender extraordinaire Kendall Lockwood oversees a craft cocktail operation that’s landed the business on Esquire’s list of America’s Best Bars.
Our pick: The Last Word, made with Citadelle gin, green chartreuse, Luxardo Maraschino, and lime juice.
Mass Ave Pub (745 Massachusetts Ave., 317-974-0745, open 11 a.m.–3 a.m.)
Tracy Robertson’s bar/restaurant is a low-key escape from the Mass Ave crowds.
Our pick: Cheeseburger and fries.
Natural Born Juicers (865 Massachusetts Ave., 317-797-4254, open 9 a.m.–7 p.m.)
Indianapolis native Laura Beatus and her husband, Corey, met working at a New York City juice bar. They brought their healthy cold-pressed juices and smoothies back to Laura’s hometown in 2008.
Our pick: The Orange Dreamsicle smoothie.
Twenty Two (Indianapolis City Market, open 9 a.m.–2 p.m.)
When Natural Born Juicers moved out of City Market, college sweethearts Ross and Leslie Hanna garaged their food truck and set up a permanent location, mixing smoothies, pressed juices, and acai bowls to order.
Our pick: The Spinilla Thrilla greens-and-vanilla smoothie.
Best Chocolate in Town (880 Massachusetts Ave., 888-294-2378, open 10 a.m.–8 p.m.)
Elizabeth Garber’s bustling chocolate shop is a dreamy mix of artisan truffles, caramels, and crunchy chocolate-covered cookies and pretzels.
Our pick: Dark lemon chiffon truffle.
R2GO (1101 N. College Ave., 317-737-2543, open 11 a.m.–5 p.m.)
Regina Mehallick was doing seasonal, farm-to-table menus at Mass Ave’s dearly departed R Bistro before most people even knew they were a thing. Now, a few blocks away, she sells ready-to-go meals and made-to order sandwiches in her market.
Our pick: Housemade pimento cheese out of the refrigerator case, with an Amelia’s Bread french baguette off the shelf.
Repeal (630 Virginia Ave., 317-672-7514, open 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)
Repeal is the sister restaurant of 12.05 Distillery, where Teresa Webster has the distinction of operating the only solely woman-owned distillery in the state.
Our pick: House cocktail and the Bowl of Balls (beef meatballs with sweet chili tomato sauce).
Bluebeard (653 Virginia Ave., 317-686-1580, open 5–11 p.m.)
Abbi Merriss has gotten national attention since the day Bluebeard opened in 2012. Diners share pickle plates and devour carbs.(Amelia’s Bread launched in the Bluebeard building and is ever-present on the menu.)
Our pick: Spaghetti with creme fraiche, parmesan, olive oil, and gremolata.
New Day Craft (1102 Prospect St., 888-632-3379, open noon–10 p.m.)
Tia Agnew and her husband, Brett, have a cozy tasting room in Fountain Square where visitors can sample hard cider or mead (an alcoholic beverage of fermented honey) while relaxing on couches or checking out the work of local artists.
Our pick: Breakfast Magpie (black raspberry mead infused with Bee Coffee Roasters espresso).