Ezra's Enlightened Cafe opened in Broad Ripple Wednesday, adding one more lovely gem to Indianapolis's growing vegetarian restaurant crown. The first of its kind in the city, Ezra's is offering raw vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO dishes. In other words, Ezra's has the cure for the processed crap that ails you, serving up high-octane health food. If you saw our vegan issue, you've seen their gorgeous Buddha Bowl. Want more info? Here's the menu for the new location.
While you're here, read Jolene's review of Three Carrots, Indy's new vegetarian spot in City Market.
And if you're looking to try some of Indy's established vegetarian- and vegan-friendly spots in town, we've rounded up a list of five (numbered but not ranked) to start you off. Think we missed an essential location? Let us know in the comments. Buen provecho!
1. The Sinking Ship
Before anyone else was serving multiple vegan dishes, The Ship was slingin' seitan like it was California in the 90s. All that extra practice has paid off, and the Ship now boasts some of the hands-down best vegan and vegetarian dishes in the city. Try absolutely anything with their seitan, because someone in that kitchen has found a way to make me prefer it to some meat dishes. It has all the smokey flavor and chew of animal-based protein, but it's packed with spices and richness. So far, the seitan gyro wrap from the Ship is has been the only vegan dish I've had intense cravings for many weeks later. It's bar food, though, so don't expect to be served a bowl of lightly-dressed field greens. This food is for hardcore mofos who drink as hard as they live, just without eating animals in the process.
2. Twenty Tap
Twenty Tap, like The Sinking Ship, wrapped their arms around the vegetarian options with the same loving flavor embrace that they do their meat dishes. The spectacular result comes in the form of a killer veggie Bahn Mi, and a recently-removed veggie reuben. Consider this blurb our veggie reuben Bat Signal calling out to the owners and chef of Twenty Tap. Bring it back, we say! Yet another reason why Twenty Tap has become a favorite meetup spot for Midtowners, where everyone—carnivores and herbivores alike—can sip on incredible local craft brews and get a filling bite.
3. 3 Sisters Cafe
Hello, old friend. Just like your cool hippie aunt, Three Sisters has been serving up the veggie dishes way before it was trendy. If you've spent any significant amount of time in Indy and were conscious during that period, you may have heard of this place. They've got you covered whether you need a plate of tasty hangover food or if you're in the mood for a light lunch (either way, get the calico hash browns). Plus, just like your hippie aunt, Three Sisters lives in a cool old Victorian (for now) in a hip neighborhood.
4. Shoefly Public House
This new-ish near Northside location is another spot with tons of options for both meat lovers and the meat-avoidant. With plates of all sizes to match every size appetite, Shoefly can satisfy you whether you're in the mood for a big ol' dinner or a plate of apps to snack on while you have a few pints. We love this bar for the same reasons we love Twenty Tap: everyone can get something to suit their diets, and their meatless options are so good, you'll never feel like you're missing out on anything.
5. Duos Kitchen
"Slow food fast" is the Duos motto, which means you'll get carefully crafted meatless food packed with so much flavor, you'll wonder why you haven't tried veggie eating before. Like our other favorites, what we love about Duos is that they take as much time and care putting together vegetarian dishes as they do their meaty dishes (NUVO staff goes through Balance Bowls like other offices go through coffee creamer). Duos also has, hands-down, the best salad bar in the city, with zingy dressings and a variety of interesting toppings. Grab lunch here and enjoy an afternoon free from the food coma of burger joints past.