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Sustainable Dining in Indianapolis: My Top Picks

Sustainable Dining in Indianapolis

When it comes to sustainable dining, Indianapolis has a lot to offer. From eco-friendly restaurants that prioritize locally sourced ingredients to farm-to-table dining experiences, the city’s sustainable food scene is thriving. As a passionate food enthusiast, I’ve explored the best sustainable dining options in Indianapolis and have compiled a list of my top picks just for you.

Key Takeaways:

  • Indianapolis has a vibrant sustainable food scene with a variety of eco-friendly restaurants.
  • Many restaurants in the city prioritize locally sourced and organic ingredients.
  • Farm-to-table dining experiences are prevalent in Indianapolis.
  • From fine dining establishments to casual eateries, there are options for every preference and budget.
  • Exploring the sustainable dining scene in Indianapolis offers a unique and flavorful culinary experience.

The Fountain Room

The Fountain Room is a downtown showstopper that radiates glamour and fun while also prioritizing sustainability. The restaurant’s Art Deco and midcentury modern design, along with its vintage reel-to-reel sound system, create an elevated dining experience.

The menu features big precision cuts of beef and simple seafood entrees, accompanied by family-style sides made with sustainable and locally sourced ingredients. The Fountain Room is a must-visit for a sustainable and stylish night out in Indianapolis.

Cheeky Bastards

Cheeky Bastards is a British brunch and dinner spot in the heart of Indianapolis that prides itself on its commitment to sustainability and the use of locally sourced ingredients. Led by chef and entrepreneur Robert Carmack, Cheeky Bastards offers a menu that combines traditional British dishes with unique culinary creations inspired by Carmack’s travels. From classic sausage rolls and baps to innovative flavor combinations, every dish at Cheeky Bastards is a delightful blend of comfort and creativity.

At Cheeky Bastards, we believe that sustainability and flavor go hand in hand. That’s why we go the extra mile to ensure that our ingredients are of the highest quality. Our meats and produce are locally sourced, and we use organic and sustainable farming practices whenever possible. We even render our own beef tallow and make our own back bacon and English bangers in-house, ensuring that every bite is not only delicious but also eco-friendly.

Highlights of Cheeky Bastards:

  • A British brunch and dinner spot in Indianapolis
  • Committed to sustainable dining and locally sourced ingredients
  • Offers traditional British dishes and unique culinary creations inspired by travels
  • Uses high-quality, locally sourced ingredients including homemade beef tallow, back bacon, and English bangers

“I fell in love with the flavors of Britain during my travels, and I wanted to bring that passion for sustainable, locally sourced ingredients to Indianapolis. Cheeky Bastards is a celebration of British cuisine, with a modern twist and a green conscience.” – Robert Carmack, Chef and Entrepreneur

Signature Dishes Description
Sausage Rolls Flaky pastry filled with seasoned pork sausage, a classic British favorite
Baps Soft bread rolls filled with a variety of delicious fillings, perfect for brunch or a quick bite
Homemade Beef Tallow Fries Golden and crispy fries cooked in rendered beef fat, served with your choice of dipping sauce
Caramelized Pear and Stilton Tart A savory tart made with sweet caramelized pears and tangy Stilton cheese


Amara is one of the standout new additions to Indianapolis’ sustainable food scene. The restaurant offers a wide array of dishes from the Indian subcontinent, including aromatic and flavorful options rarely seen in Central Indiana. Amara’s menu features chaat-inspired starters, classic southern Indian curries, and unique Indochinese dishes. The restaurant’s focus on authentic flavors and innovative dishes makes it a must-visit for those looking for a sustainable dining experience in Indianapolis.

Amara’s Menu:

Starters Curries Indochinese
Chaat-inspired appetizers Classic southern Indian curries Fusion dishes with Indian and Chinese flavors
Masala papad Biryani Hakka noodles
Pani puri Butter chicken Manchurian
Bhel puri Lamb curry Chilli chicken

Amara’s diverse menu offers a fusion of traditional Indian flavors with modern techniques and presentations. From the refreshing pani puri to the rich and creamy butter chicken, each dish is crafted with a sustainable approach, utilizing local and organic ingredients whenever possible. Whether you’re a fan of Indian cuisine or seeking a unique culinary adventure, Amara guarantees a memorable and sustainable dining experience in the heart of Indianapolis.

Julieta Taco Shop

Julieta Taco Shop is a hidden gem in the heart of Indianapolis, offering green dining options that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. As an advocate for eco-friendly practices, this taqueria prioritizes sustainability by sourcing local and organic ingredients for its traditional Mexican recipes. From the slow-braised fillings to the homemade blue corn tortillas, every bite is a delicious and environmentally conscious experience.

What sets Julieta Taco Shop apart is its commitment to building partnerships within the community. A notable collaboration is with the neighboring bar, Turner’s Bar. This unique alliance allows patrons to enjoy their tacos with a refreshing highball or a perfectly crafted martini, elevating the eco-friendly dining experience to new heights.

I highly recommend trying their signature tacos, such as the savory carne asada or the flavorful vegetarian options. The combination of fresh ingredients and expert craftsmanship makes each dish a true delight. Whether you’re dining in or taking your order to-go, Julieta Taco Shop provides a sustainable and satisfying culinary adventure.

Why Choose Julieta Taco Shop:

  • Locally sourced and organic ingredients
  • Traditional Mexican recipes
  • Sustainable and eco-friendly dining options
  • Collaboration with neighboring bar for a unique dining experience

“At Julieta Taco Shop, we believe in the power of sustainable dining, where delicious flavors and eco-conscious practices go hand in hand. Join us and indulge in our mouthwatering tacos, all crafted with love and a commitment to the environment.”

Signature Tacos Description
Carne Asada Tender, marinated steak grilled to perfection and topped with fresh ingredients.
Vegetable Medley A colorful mix of seasonal vegetables, showcasing the bounty of local farms.
Al Pastor Mouthwatering pork, marinated in a tangy and flavorful sauce, served with pineapple and cilantro.


Vicino is Mass Ave’s first full-service Italian restaurant in over a decade, and it’s making waves in the sustainable dining scene. The restaurant focuses on innovative Mediterranean dishes made with locally sourced and sustainable ingredients. From their signature arancini and artisan pizzas to their wood-oven chicken and perfectly seared branzino, Vicino offers a range of dishes that showcase their commitment to farm-to-table dining. A visit to Vicino is sure to satisfy your cravings for both sustainability and delicious Italian cuisine.

If you’re looking for a memorable dining experience that combines local and organic ingredients with the flavors of Italy, Vicino is the place to be. The restaurant’s dedication to sustainability is evident in every aspect of its operation, from sourcing ingredients from local farmers to using eco-friendly practices in its kitchen. With a menu that changes seasonally to highlight the freshest ingredients available, you can always expect a unique and tantalizing dining experience at Vicino.

One of the standout dishes at Vicino is their signature arancini. These golden-fried risotto balls are filled with a variety of delicious ingredients, such as wild mushrooms, truffle oil, and fresh mozzarella. Each bite is bursting with flavor, making it the perfect appetizer to start your meal. The artisan pizzas are another highlight of the menu, with toppings ranging from classic Margherita to inventive combinations like prosciutto, fig, and gorgonzola.

Elevating Farm-to-Table Dining

Vicino takes farm-to-table dining to the next level by not only sourcing local and organic ingredients but also creating dishes that celebrate the flavors and traditions of Italian cuisine. Their wood-oven chicken is a prime example of this. The chicken is marinated with fragrant herbs and spices, then cooked in a wood-fired oven to perfection. The result is tender and flavorful meat that pairs beautifully with the accompanying roasted vegetables and creamy polenta.

Another dish that showcases Vicino’s commitment to sustainable dining is their perfectly seared branzino. This Mediterranean sea bass is sourced from local waters and cooked to flaky perfection. Served with a refreshing citrus salad and drizzled with a delicate herb-infused olive oil, the branzino is a true crowd-pleaser.

At Vicino, sustainability is not just a buzzword. It’s a way of life that informs every aspect of the restaurant’s operations and culinary creations. Their dedication to supporting local farmers and serving dishes made with fresh, organic ingredients ensures that every meal is a celebration of both the flavors of Italy and the bountiful resources of the surrounding region.

If you’re looking for an authentic and sustainable dining experience in Indianapolis, look no further than Vicino. From the moment you step into the restaurant, you’ll be greeted with warm hospitality and a commitment to quality that is evident in every dish. Whether you’re craving classic Italian flavors or want to try something new and exciting, Vicino has you covered. With their emphasis on local and organic ingredients, farm-to-table dining has never tasted so good.

Dish Description
Arancini Golden-fried risotto balls filled with wild mushrooms, truffle oil, and fresh mozzarella
Artisan Pizzas Wood-fired pizzas with a variety of toppings, from classic Margherita to prosciutto, fig, and gorgonzola
Wood-Oven Chicken Tender marinated chicken cooked in a wood-fired oven, served with roasted vegetables and creamy polenta
Seared Branzino Perfectly cooked Mediterranean sea bass served with a citrus salad and herb-infused olive oil

Chicken Scratch

Chicken Scratch is the go-to spot for delicious and sustainable chicken wings in Indianapolis. The restaurant offers traditional jumbo bone-in wings as well as hand-cut and breaded boneless wings, all cooked to perfection and served with a range of flavorful sauces.

Chicken Scratch’s commitment to using high-quality ingredients and offering eco-conscious options, such as loaded fries with truffle oil and Parmesan, makes it a top choice for sustainable dining in the city.


Indianapolis offers a flourishing sustainable dining scene that caters to eco-conscious foodies and supports the local community. With a wide range of options, from upscale establishments to casual eateries, the city presents a diverse selection of eco-friendly restaurants that prioritize farm-to-table experiences and locally sourced ingredients.

Indulge in the stylish ambiance and sustainable practices of restaurants like The Fountain Room and Vicino, where you can savor innovative dishes made with sustainable and organic ingredients. If you’re in the mood for a unique culinary experience, Cheeky Bastards offers traditional British dishes with a sustainable twist. For those craving authentic Mexican flavors, Julieta Taco Shop serves up delicious tacos made with local and organic ingredients.

Chicken Scratch is the go-to destination for mouthwatering, sustainable chicken wings. With a commitment to high-quality ingredients, they offer a variety of options that cater to eco-conscious diners. Whether you’re in the mood for a fine dining experience, casual brunch, or a quick bite, Indianapolis has it all when it comes to sustainable dining.

Experience the thriving sustainable food scene in Indianapolis and support the eco-friendly restaurants that contribute to a greener future. From the farm-to-table movement to a focus on local and organic ingredients, these dining establishments provide a sustainable and delicious culinary journey that you don’t want to miss.

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