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December 2012

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BEAUTY & WELLNESS

The best Brazilian wax, hair blowout bar, juice cleanse, TRX class, nail polish lab, straight-razor shave, ballet classes, and more

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ARTS & CULTURE

The best book of 2012, season concerts, Super Bowl leftover, literary souvenir, museum overhaul, fashion photography, new concert venue, artistic discovery, museum exhibit, and more

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BEST OF CARMEL

Five great picks in Indy’s neighbor to the north.

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Best Gay-Friendly Bar

Music videos and cocktails mix like J.Lo and backup dancers—this we learned from Tini, a petite bar with TVs where a four-round night might go something like this:

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Best Art Gallery

Signed works by major artists fill the Conrad’s new Long-Sharp Gallery, an extension of Rhonda Long-Sharp’s renowned online dealership, Modern Masters. Here, her rules for investing in fine-art prints:

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Best Dinner Spread

When Bluebeard opened in June, word of its Bohemian cuisine and cocktails spread like a meme. The deconstructed menu changes nightly, but order from each category and you can’t go wrong.

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Best Meat Empire

The only question now is how to use the sexy cold cuts from Smoking Goose Meatery. Here, some tasty ideas.

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Best French Onion Soup

Some people say you can read the quality of a restaurant in the way it cooks a steak ordered medium-rare. Others use the poached egg, or the quality of the table bread, the pluckiness of the staff, the cleanliness of the washrooms. I’ve decided that such merits lie beneath the melted Gruyere of French onion soup.

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Best Gift Shops

Find the best picks for the book-club member, the city-chic niece, the snowboarding son, the choosy mother-in-law, and the domestic-goddess pal in your midst.

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Best Bookstore

True story: In the post-paper Kindle age, an independent used-book shop opened with enough bright-eyed enthusiasm to triumph over dark capitalist forces. Even if you adore your e-reader, you’ll love hanging out here just as much, thanks to a cast of winsome characteristics.

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Best Calorie Burn

Even adults jump for joy here once they get out there and bounce up a sweat. Don’t fear the face-plant—grab a pair of issued sneakers and hop to it!

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Best Zine: The Hipstorians Present Commercial Article

Untold chapters of local art history come to light through a series of enchanting design publications.

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