Flatwater: Broad Ripple's latest eatery

The Mahi Mahi tacos are $8 at Flatwater.

It

may be hard to believe today, but there once was a concrete parking deck

spanning the canal in Broad Ripple. Not only that, many of the merchants there

were convinced that trading the neighborhood's water feature for extra parking

spaces was a good deal.

Well,

that parking deck is long gone. And Broad Ripple is still a good place to do

business – especially the restaurant business.

Flatwater

Restaurant is the latest entry in Broad Ripple's culinary sweepstakes. Located

on the site originally occupied by Bazbeaux (before that eatery took over

NUVO's old digs) and then a couple of other hopefuls that never fully caught

on, Flatwater makes the most of its canalside location.

After

Bazbeaux moved out, succeeding owners of the site took advantage of the

revivified canal and added considerable deck space overlooking the water.

Flatwater is the beneficiary of this change. A recent visit indicates that the

new place's owners are positioning themselves to make the most of this highly

attractive situation.

We

started with a Shrimp Cocktail ($9.50), five large and wonderfully tender

critters draped over a Martini glass filled with cocktail sauce. The menu calls

the sauce "spicy," forgetting, perhaps that this is Indianapolis. We know what

spicy cocktail sauce tastes like. Flatwater should either change the

description or add an extra dollop of horseradish.

Next

up were a couple of salads. I ordered a small Wedge ($4.50), a snowball-sized

cut of iceberg lettuce, finished with diced tomatoes, big crumbles of bleu

cheese and hunks of applewood bacon. Everything, especially the size of the

portion, was just right about this dish.

My

companion asked for a small Mixed Greens salad ($5.50), a nice mound of fresh

lettuces topped with walnuts, dried cranberries, those bleu cheese crumbles,

and a nicely balanced Dijon balsamic dressing.

Flatwater

offers small plates of tacos made with Mahi Mahi, shrimp or pulled pork ($8)

and sliders ($9.75) with hickory smoked ham or turkey, grilled pork tenderloin,

Hoosier mini pork tenderloin or pulled pork.

I

opted for the tacos, two servings bedecked with chunks of Mahi Mahi, homemade

pico, cheese and cilantro. The fish was smartly grilled and the chunks were

good-sized; each mouthful was brightened by the gazpacho-like pico.

There

are Entrees for larger appetites, including a 10 oz. Center Cut New York Strip

($20), Claus' Pork Chop ($14), a pan-fried Walleye ($17.50) and grilled Salmon

with a sesame-cilantro glaze ($15). We chose the Vegetarian Pasta ($11.50), a

satisfying blend of mushrooms, kalamata olives and artichoke hearts tossed in a

roasted tomato cream sauce featuring tasty scrapings of parmesan cheese and

fresh garlic over penne pasta. The sauce was a hit – with plenty of garlic

and tomato flavors trumping the cream.

Flatwater

has full bar service and, to their credit, features local Sun King and Upland

brews on tap.

Flatwater's

actual building isn't much bigger than a (very) cozy neighborhood pub. It's all

nooks and narrow passages. It'll be interesting to see how the owners deal with

cold weather. But as long as outdoor dining is on order, this is a prime spot

with a menu that's small, but nicely packed with a sophisticated selection of

vittles.

Flatwater

Restaurant

832

E. Westfield Blvd.

317-257-5466

www.flatwaterbroadripple.com

FOOD:

3.5 stars

ATMOSPHERE:

4 stars

SERVICE:

3 stars

HOURS:

Monday-Thursday:

11 am-10 pm

Friday-Saturday:

11 am-11 pm

Sunday:

Noon-10 pm

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