Can you believe that Devour Downtown is in its tenth year? It's one of the best dining events Indy has to offer, with tons of downtown restaurants offering a lower-priced Devour menu from January 19 until February 1, so you can try a few spots you may not have been to before. But lest you get overwhelmed by the choices, we put together a list of picks to help guide you through this process and lower your stress. This list is all about where to get the best of what you want for the best price.
For the self-identified "foodies"
These are some of the most recognized spots in town, having established a solid reputation for raising the bar on modern American dining in Indianapolis. Many of these spots could easily be cross-listed as great date spots, if your date is anyone cool.
You'll not only be getting great food here, but Alan Sternberg's plates are almost too beautiful to eat. Go here if you prefer your fabulous meal look as pretty as it tastes.
339 S. Delaware St., 870-1320, ceruleanrestaurant.com
More or less the original flagship of fine dining in Indy, this is a great opportunity to see the place that started it all. Not to mention that the service is beyond excellent.
888 Massachusetts Ave., 423-0312, rbistro.com
Mesh on Mass
We profiled Mesh's in-house charcuterie program last week, so take the opportunity to head down and see what other fabulous things they prepare in-house. It's also one of the most gorgeous dining rooms in town.
725 Massachusetts Ave., 955-9600, meshonmass.com
Plow & Anchor
New chef Toby Moreno has taken the helm from John Adams, after leaving Tallent in Bloomington after years of service. Go see all the amazing things he's bringing to the table.
43 W. 9th St., 964-0538, plowandanchor.com
Micah Frank's joint has been turning out delicious locally-sourced food and phenomenal cocktails for years. You know this one and you love it, or you don't, so try it!
922 Massachusetts Ave., 822-6757, blackmarketindy.net
Personal confession: I would probably eat here once a week if I had the budget. I like the small plates and the cocktail program and, well, everything, because it's great.
653 Virginia Ave., 686-1580, bluebeardindy.com
Get your steak on
We have no qualms about recommending a few chains in this group. After all, we're trying to help you stretch your dollar and get as much protein as you can, so there's no shame in hitting up Ruth's or Fogo. Just eat twice at a local place to make up for it.
Harry & Izzy's
St. Elmo's little sister and brother pack a mean steak punch as well, plus you can still get the famous shrimp cocktail without feeling like you need to be wearing a tie.
153 S. Illinois St., 635-9594, harryandizzys.com
If you don't know about St. Elmo's, welcome to Indianapolis and/or sorry about that whole coma thing. Welcome/welcome back!
127 S. Illinois St., Ste. 2, 635-0636, stelmos.com
Lesser-known spot with incredible steak and an even more incredible but lesser-known Sunday brunch. If you're a steak fan, don't let Devour pass you by without trying this place.
47 S. Pennsylvania St., 624-0720, prime47.com
Fogo de Chao
You know how it goes: you keep eating meat until you beg for mercy. A national chain, you won't find many culinary deviations, but this spot is all about dollar-cost averaging. Flip that little card to red before you get the meat sweats for best results.
117 E. Washington St., 638-4000, fogodechao.com
One of the country's most recognizable names in steak franchises. They also serve great cocktails. Do you need to know more?
45 S. Illinois St., 633-1313, ruthschris.com
Devour Downtown is a great opportunity to meet up in large parties, the one-price-fits-all making it simple to do tickets (reminder: lower-priced menus do not mean you get to stiff the wait staff). Stop by one of these places for group-friendly dining with big menus and crowd-pleasing options.
Not just pizza, but pasta dishes and all kinds of goodies like in-house charcuterie. There's a reason this Neal Brown Hospitality franchise is growing, serving locally-sourced pies in a clean, bright dining room.
608 Massachusetts Ave., 685-2550, pizzologyindy.com
Smokehouse on Shelby
Dressed up like a diner and serving damn good barbecue in Fountain Square, you should stop by the Smokehouse on your way out or upstairs to do some duckpin bowling.
1103 Shelby St., 685-1959, fountainsquareindy.com
Time and again, this Cunningham Group spot (Mesh on Mass and Union 50 as well) comes up as one of Indy's favorite burger restaurants. Take the opportunity to see why during Devour.
410 Massachusetts Ave., 635-4278, bruburgerbar.com
Skip B-Dubs for the game and go to Scotty's, the perfect spot to take your big family or large group to find something everyone can eat. Scotty's does beer and food very well, so try a pint and have a plate of fried pickles.
1 Virginia Ave., 571-0808, scottysbrewhouse.com
As the Crossroads of America, you've come to expect pretty decent international food. While nothing quite holds a candle to the Michigan and Lafayette road selections, respectively, you can still find some quality international eats during Devour.
If you go nowhere else this Devour, please check out Rook. Chef Carlos Salazar is one of the best in town, and he makes some of the best Asian food in town, drawing from his Filipino roots. Join #teamdumpling (Now! Today!) and know happiness.
719 Virginia Ave., 759-5828, rookindy.com
Nothing perks up the winter blahs like eating something fresh and Mediterranean, so get down there and glut yourself on some Greek indulgence. Opah!
906 S. Meridian St., 636-0700, greekislandsrestaurant.com
Bold statement time here: Adobo Grill has the best guacamole in town. No surprise, as they mix it by hand tableside. They've also got, by far, the best selection of Mezcal.
110 E. Washington St., 822-9990, adobogrill.com
Before I moved to Indy, I hadn't ever gotten a "real" German food experience, even after growing up in Evansville. Rathskellar thoroughly fixed my wagon on that front, with all the beer and sausages your inner German could want.
401 E. Michigan St., 636-0396, rathskeller.com
Tapas is the best style of eating when you're adventurous and you want to have a little bite of everything. This spot also has one of the best damn brunches in town. Trust me on that.
201 N. Delaware St., 638-8272, barcelonatapas.com
Wood fired pizza and pasta? Not exactly "exotic," I realize, but the traditional style is a nice nod to authentic Italian dining, plus the wine list isn't too shabby.
30 S. Meridian St., 635-0765, napolesepizzeria.com
A great date is not just about the food, but the mood and atmosphere. These places will set a nice candle-lit tone for your whole evening.
Another Cunningham Group restaurant, Union 50 boasts a gorgeous interior with an eclectic, sophisticated menu. Plus it's in that great location right off of Mass — another great place to start a fun night.
620 East St., 610-0234, union-50.com
Holy shit, the restaurant spins and gives you a 360-degree view of downtown! This is all about the wow factor, and it's definitely worth it on a snowy night. Talk about views that get you so laid.
1 S. Capitol Ave., 616-6170, indianapolis.hyatt.com
Intimate and delicious. Kind of like the end of a great date, hopefully. Also, they have live performances at their cabaret that you won't have to shout over to continue your conversation.
115 E. Ohio St., 600-3577, chefjosephs.com
There is some kind of magic to those blown-glass chandeliers lit from above, ya know? Plus, it's in the dead-center of downtown, making it an easy jumping-off point for a fun night.
49 E. Maryland St., 189, 974-0400, palomino.com
Of course, Palomino doesn't have shit on Platt 99's lighting concept. This bar is the very definition of Babyface's "Grown and Sexy" with a bar menu that rivals nicer bars in markets like Chicago and San Fran.
333 S. Delaware St., 624-8200, thealexander.com