Street Savvy: Fletcher Place
Thank you, Bluebeard, for sparking the hippest street in town.
Slate (1), the latest of several new apartment buildings on Virginia Avenue, houses the strip’s toniest digs, thanks to big, covered balconies and the skyline views from top-floor units (which cost up to $2,400 per month). On the street level, the newly expanded Rook cooks up Indy’s most inventive contemporary Asian food. 501 Virginia Ave.
The young-and-hip crowd at Milktooth (2) felt validated when Bon Appetit named it one of America’s best new restaurants last year. Now it’s notorious for long lines and the city’s most gourmet coffee menu. Go on a Monday to miss the crowd, and be sure to order a latte and a latke. 534 Virginia Ave., 986-5131
Lift Therapeutic Massage (3) specializes in simple, straightforward treatments for stress and pain relief. Hot stones and a honey facial sound pretty good right now. 540 Virginia Ave., 964-0788
Parking is hard to come by in Fletcher Place—unless you’re in a Blue Indy electric car (4). The station enjoys primo reserved spots. It’s $8 for a 20-minute trip without a membership, and every extra minute costs 40 cents. Not cheap, but less than a parking ticket. 550 Virginia Ave.
True to Fletcher Place’s Italian roots, newcomer Cafe Nonna (5) makes silky gelato and icy sorbetto the old-country way (Andrew Luck has been spotted sampling a scoop). But don’t overlook the lunch menu. The meatball sandwich is surprisingly good, and just $5. 629 Virginia Ave., 986-6904
Nestled inside the historic Virginia Avenue Bank Building, Repeal (6) offers a refined counterpoint to the street’s lineup of trendsetting eateries and watering holes. Revivalist cocktails feature spirits from sister business 12.05 Distillery, and the adventurous nosh takes cues from 1930s menus. 630 Virginia Ave., 672-7514
Follow the scent of campfire to Hotel Tango (7) (a bar, not a B&B). A wood-burning fireplace fit for a ski lodge anchors the artisanal distillery’s spacious tasting room. The rum-spiked hot cider will warm you up, too. 702 Virginia Ave., 653-1806
The joe is almost beside the point at Calvin Fletcher’s Coffee Company (8), the neighborhood’s social hub, cut from the cloth of 1990s cafes. Father-and-son proprietors Jeff and Doug Litsey know all their regulars by name, and they make a mean red eye (coffee with a shot of espresso). 647 Virginia Ave., 423-9697
Amelia’s (9) is a European-style bakery that wouldn’t feel out of place in Paris (or Brooklyn, for that matter). The focaccia, semolina, and city loaf are all excellent, but if you’re looking to spoil yourself, try the Kouign-amann (that’s Queen Amman), a crusty pastry with a delicate sweetness. 653 Virginia Ave., 686-1583
Erstwhile food-truck phenom Spice Box (10) has found the perfect home in the shotgun room formerly occupied by Rook. If there’s a better fast-Indian-food joint here, we want to know about it. Start with the Tandoori chicken tacos. 719 Virginia Ave., 220-8590
The Bureau (11) co-working space is a bewitching blend of clean, modern lines and avant-garde artwork. Make it your office for $25 a day or $175 a month. 719 Virginia Ave, 318-0600
Live music—often of the acoustic, Grateful Dead–influenced variety—fills Chilly Water Brewing Company (12) every weekend night. Nurse a Built to Last pilsner, arguably the best in town, paired with the spicy feta dip, and you’ll be truckin’ indeed. 719 Virginia Ave., 964-0518.