I like books. I like beer. What genius thought of combining the two? In a nondescript building next to a home improvement store on the north side of Indianapolis is Books & Brews.
It is an unusual space. You first walk into a storefront with the books for sale and seating that is their under 21 area. Behind that is the bar and another room with a stage set up. That area looks like it was converted from warehouse space.
The store has a fairly decent sized selection of used books. I was also excited they sell Out of Print book t-shirts. I restrained myself from buying one because I already have a fairly extensive collection; however, I am thinking about going back to get the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy one to go with my socks.
They also have an impressive collection of board games. I would love to go back and play one because this is what happens every time you try to play a game at my house:
This was my second visit to Books & Brews. The first time I met a friend for dinner after work. The menu consists mostly of sandwiches, including a wide selection of grilled cheeses. I had ordered the Pig in the Iron Mask grilled cheese which features bacon from Smoking Goose, a local smokehouse with fabulous cured meats. While that was delicious, the potato chips from the Broad Ripple Chip Company really won me over. It makes for a vicious cycle of potato chips, followed by beer, followed by more potato chips, and more beer.
This past visit, my husband and I just had a beer after work. The beers also have bookish names. I got the Winnie the Brew, which is (of course) a honey brown ale. My husband got Nancy Brew and the Hoppy Boys. Other beers included Clifford the Big Red Ale, Cream and Punishment, and Charlie and the Chocolate Stout. Their list changes frequently, and they keep you apprised of new tappings on their website.
On both of my visits, I got the strong impression that much of their business is made up of regulars, and I can see why. It is a unique little spot that offers a lot for everyone: books, live music, games, food, and conversation.
Stay tuned for the last installment of Bookish Eats: Porter Books and Bread