DINING: Clubhouse serves mixed messages

All-American Clubhouse

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Dining - A&E

This month, we’re celebrating the all-American red, white and blue Fourth of July with an all-American restaurant and ones with red, white and blue in their names.

First up, All-American Clubhouse (3951 S. Meridian St., 781-1386). In the spot that used to house Oliver’s, Gia Bellas and others, the Clubhouse’s fairly non-descript exterior makes it an easy drive-past.

Its website doesn’t do it many favors, either. Visit www.allamericanclubhouse.com and you’ll find the Clubhouse’s cartoon logo barmaid and a naughty looking live model, both clad in bust-enhancing referee garb.

Dining The Blue Cheese Grilled Onion Burger is a highlight of the All-American Clubhouse menu. (IBJ Photo/ Perry Reichanadter)

OK, you’d be justified in thinking, this is Hooters without the franchise.

You’d be wrong.

All-American Clubhouse is actually a family-friendly, non-smoking neighborhood pub. Its personable staff and ubiquitous (but turned down to a reasonable level) TV screens helped make our visit a pleasure.

Of course, it helped that the kitchen serves a consistent, if minimal, menu of traditional tavern offerings. Turns out that Karl Benko (with a track record that includes Peterson’s and Sullivan’s) and Stephen Graham (Tastings at the Conrad, Iozzo’s Garden of Italy) had hands in crafting the lineup.

Without ever straying beyond the average bar patron’s comfort zone, the Clubhouse’s attention to detail pays off. Jumbo Wings ($8.95 as an appetizer, $15.95 as a two-pound entrée) aren’t freakishly large, but substantial and appropriately sided with carrots and celery (we’ve griped here in the past about eateries that consider the veggies “extras”).

The pizzas, using hand-pulled dough, range from a $10 cheese pie to a $15.95 All American with pepperoni, Italian sausage, ham, bacon, ground beef, caramelized garlic and a house cheese blend. We enjoyed a Margherita version ($10.95) with fresh Roma tomatoes and a light garlic taste. We took half of it home, where it warmed up nicely a day later.

We spent more time sampling from the sandwich menu, which is highlighted by the Blue Cheese Grilled Onion Burger ($8.95). Like the BBQ Chicken sandwich ($6.95) and the well-above-average Beer-battered Cod sandwich ($8.95), it came on a soft brioche bun. Sides include the always-tempting fresh-cut French fries, but the kitchen also adeptly fries its own potato chips.

What was missing? Well, we didn’t see a deep-cleavaged referee, but that was perfectly fine with us.•

First in a month-long series of reviews of red, white and blue eateries.


  • Awesome Pizza
    I agree with you Indy foodie, The Clubhouse does have the best pizza in town. I've never been a fan of meat lover style pizzas but the All American pizza is my favorite!
  • Awesome Pizza
    The clubhouse has the best pizza in town. Period. I think they are related to Iozzos, but that place's pizza is not the best. The clubhouse has got great pizza and great ribs.

    Post a comment to this story

    We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
    You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
    Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
    No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
    We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

    Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

    Sponsored by

    facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

    Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
    Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
    Subscribe to IBJ
    1. I never thought I'd see the day when a Republican Mayor would lead the charge in attempting to raise every tax we have to pay. Now it's income taxes and property taxes that Ballard wants to increase. And to pay for a pre-K program? Many studies have shown that pre-K offer no long-term educational benefits whatsoever. And Ballard is pitching it as a way of fighting crime? Who is he kidding? It's about government provided day care. It's a shame that we elected a Republican who has turned out to be a huge big spending, big taxing, big borrowing liberal Democrat.

    2. Why do we blame the unions? They did not create the 11 different school districts that are the root of the problem.

    3. I was just watching an AOW race from cleveland in 1997...in addition to the 65K for the race, there were more people in boats watching that race from the lake than were IndyCar fans watching the 2014 IndyCar season finale in the Fontana grandstands. Just sayin...That's some resurgence modern IndyCar has going. Almost profitable, nobody in the grandstands and TV ratings dropping 61% at some tracks in the series. Business model..."CRAZY" as said by a NASCAR track general manager. Yup, this thing is purring like a cat! Sponsors...send them your cash, pronto!!! LOL, not a chance.

    4. I'm sure Indiana is paradise for the wealthy and affluent, but what about the rest of us? Over the last 40 years, conservatives and the business elite have run this country (and state)into the ground. The pendulum will swing back as more moderate voters get tired of Reaganomics and regressive social policies. Add to that the wave of minority voters coming up in the next 10 to 15 years and things will get better. unfortunately we have to suffer through 10 more years of gerrymandered districts and dispropionate representation.

    5. Funny thing....rich people telling poor people how bad the other rich people are wanting to cut benefits/school etc and that they should vote for those rich people that just did it. Just saying..............