2023 Year in Review: Coffee concepts put jolt into food and beverage landscape

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Kountry Kitchen owners and community leaders cut the ribbon in October on a new restaurant and event center in Indianapolis. (Courtesy of Kountry Kitchen)

Coffee shops flowed into central Indiana this year, highlighted by 10 companies that launched new locations:

Barista Parlor, founded in Nashville, Tennessee, in 2012, opened in July in the renovated Stutz, 1060 N. Capitol Ave. Also in July, Louisville-based Please & Thank You expanded to Indianapolis with a spot at 849 Massachusetts Ave. Five years after the Thirsty Scholar coffee, beer and wine bar closed in the Penn Arts building, Dream Palace Books & Coffee welcomed customers in October at 111 E. 16th St. MOTW Coffee and Pastries opened its fourth local shop, 12761 Old Meridian St., Carmel, in April.

A new location of Tinker Coffee Co. opened in May at 360 E. Market St., where the residential tower hosted a Starbucks until 2020. Blue Mind Coffee Shop opened in February at 646 E. 38th St., a building that served as headquarters for the Indiana Pacers during the team’s ABA era. The Avenue Coffeehouse & Cafe became part of the Broad Ripple food and beverage scene in February. The shop supports not-for-profit Avenue Foundation Inc., which lists its mission as eliminating the racial wealth gap in central Indiana. Illumine Coffee Co., which originated as a beverage partner at the Indianapolis Art Center, opened in February at 8517 Westfield Blvd.

Garfield Park’s Skosh opened in November at 2555 Shelby St., where the business model combines a coffee bar with a home decor store. And Scooter’s Coffee, a drive-through concept that originated in Nebraska, opened locations in Fortville and Franklin in October.

Selected restaurant openings from January through mid-November:

January: Siam Star Asian Express, 890 E. 116th St., Carmel; a Lincoln Square Pancake House, 150 W. Market St.

February: Hovito Ultra Lounge, 234 S. Meridian St.; Blankus Luxury Lounge, 501 N. College Ave.; Doc B’s, Fashion Mall at Keystone; Agave & Rye Tequila and Bourbon Hall, 336 S. Delaware St.; a Carmel location of Le Macaron French Pastries, 14550 Clay Terrace Blvd.; Swensons Drive-In, 8894 E. U.S. 36, Avon

March: Georgia St. Rhythm & Blues Lounge, 28 W. Georgia St.; Gallery Pastry Shop, 4573 N. College Ave.; Open Kitchen, 4022 Shelby St.; K-Town Korean BBQ & Hot Pot, 9350 Michigan Road; an Irvington location of Scarlet Lane Brewing, 5632 E. Washington St.; Paradox Lounge, 1059 Virginia Ave.; Park & Rec, 247 S. Meridian St.

April: Tupelo Honey Southern Kitchen & Bar, 320 S. Alabama St.; Los Arroyos, 137 E. New York St.; Beacon Off the Path, 2201 E. 46th St.; The Quarter, 925 E. Westfield Blvd.; Broad Ripple Bistro, 6331 Guilford Ave.

May: Vicino, 350 Massachusetts Ave.; Walk On’s Sports Bistreaux, 247 S. Meridian St.; a Broad Ripple location of Centerpoint Brewing, 6320 Guilford Ave.; a Nora location of Luciana’s Mexican Restaurant and Cantina, 9510 N. Meridian St.; Rush Bowls, 11649 Maple St., Fishers

June: Smash’d Burger Bar, 10 Johnson Ave.; an Amelia’s Bakery location at the Stutz; Nowhere Special, 608 Massachusetts Ave.; a Carmel location of King Dough, 12505 Old Meridian St.; Tha Daiquiri Factory, 1634 East St.; The Rejoicing Vine, 8440 W. 82nd St.; the reopened Liberty Street, 653 Massachusetts Ave.

July: Julieta Taco Shop at the Stutz; Turner’s Bar at the Stutz; Parlor Doughnuts, 805 W. 10th St.; Mr. Dan’s, 2611 E. 46th St.; A Cup of Chai, 1028 Shelby St.; HandleBar Hangar, 501 Madison Ave.

August: A Zionsville location of Cafe Patachou, 95 E. Pine St.; an Avon location of Chicken Salad Chick, 8782 E. U.S. 36.

September: Burgeezy, 335 W. Ninth St.; Paco’s Taqueira, 2902 W. 86th St.; Pig Pen BBQ at the Garage Food Hall; a Castleton location of Gaucho’s Fire Express, 3746 E. 82nd St.

October: Theo’s Italian, The Shops at Perry Crossing, Plainfield; Chicken Scratch, 121 W. Maryland St.; Bardales Seafood, 882 E. Coil St.; Slim Chickens, 5730 W. 86th St.; the rebuilt Kountry Kitchen, 1831 N. College Ave.; Gather 22, 22 E. 22nd St.; a Greenwood location of Chilly Water Brewing, 1480 Olive Branch Parke Lane; Stixx, 621 Fort Wayne Ave.

November: EggHolic, 1224 W. 86th St.; restaurant at RH Indianapolis, The Gallery at the DeHaan Estate, 4501 Michigan Road

Among prominent closures:

Ember Urban Eatery Restaurant and Bar, 435 Virginia Ave.

Wabash Brewing LLC, 5328 W. 79th St.

Black Acre Brewing Co., three locations

Indiana City Brewing Co., 24 Shelby St.

Wildwood Market, 1015 Virginia Ave.

Tiki Bob’s Cantina, 231 S. Meridian St.

3 Sisters Cafe, 6223 Guilford Ave.

Hotel Tango Distillery, 10615 Zionsville Road, Zionsville

Grumps Slice Stop, 2201 E. 46th St.

Hoss Bar & Grill, 7870 E. 96th St., Fishers

Doughnuts & Dragons, 3838 E. 82nd St.

Green District, three locations.

Mimi Blue, Fashion Mall

Wine Market & Table, 1031 Virginia Ave.

Rise’n Roll Bakery, 107 E. New York St.

SweeTies Gourmet Treats, two locations

Roots Burger Bar, 5711 E. 71st St.

Studio Movie Grill, 3535 W. 86th St.

Three Carrots, 920 Virginia Ave.

Between the Bun, 2222 W. Southport Road

Squealers, 5515 W. 86th St.•

Check out more year-in-review stories from 2023.

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