Farm-to-fork restaurants are not something reserved for the East or West coast or the big cities. There are plenty of farm-to-table restaurants right here in Indiana. We hear plenty of jokes about the amount of corn in Indiana, and while we are far more than agriculture, a farm or farmer’s market is never too far away. Local restaurants can easily carry local products.
If you are unfamiliar with the term “farm-to-fork” or “farm-to-table,” it simply means that the restaurant or cafe sources their food locally instead of from a commercial vendor. The fresh, not frozen, products are literally delivered from the farm-to-the restaurant (and your table). These items can range from fresh produce and fruits to eggs (chicken and quail) and meats from chicken to pork to beef, and probably everything in between.
Taste the difference. See what Hoosier restaurant chefs, cooks, and owners are dishing up around the state. It’s home cooking you just can’t beat.
Use the map at the end of the post to see exactly where to find these delicious dining options. If I missed someone, please let me know. I would be happy to add them to this list.
Indiana Farm-to-Fork, Farm-to-Table Restaurants, and Cafes
Northern Indiana Farm-to-Table Restaurants
When you want a farm-to-table restaurant in northern Indiana, you will certainly find your fair share.
54 MAIN BISTRO
This one is different than most: there is no walk-in cooler or freezer inside the 1895 Victorian home turned restaurant. Each week, a new menu is created using ingredients that are locally available. Grass-fed and organic foods are the star of the show. Sip craft beers or organic wines. Enjoy the waterfront view and the outdoor seating.
Upscale, but without the snobbery, Artisan features a fresh menu of French-American food in an intimate locale. Artisan received the AAA Four Diamond award for 2016. Look for special events that pair live music with fine dining. Scallops, bison, pork chops are popular items. If you can’t make up your mind, opt for the chef’s tasting menu and try a little of each.
This cafe does things a little differently. The cafe uses local, fair trade, and organic items from the shelves of products for sale right there at the Purple Porch. There’s a salad bar, hot soups, hot foods, sandwiches, and baked goods available. With breakfast, lunch, or dinner, you always have an easy option.
In spring, summer, and fall, you can bet that 99% of the menu is going to be locally-sourced. There is even a vegetable and herb garden right there. Pop in at lunch for an Asian-inspired Bento box. In the evening, however, you can expect modern Midwestern cuisine. This is beautiful food. Prepare to be amazed–and look to the Facebook Page for frequent event postings and enticing specials to mix it up a little.
From the Corndance Tavern website, “In the Potawatomi tribes, the secrets of farming as well as the songs and legends that accompanied them, were guarded and passed from mother to daughter in the cornfields as they worked the land together.” Corndance Tavern is honoring these “Keepers of the Fire” who lived in the area for more than 200 years with locally-sourced foods from farms and orchards in the area. The menu is seasonally-inspired, so expect to see a change with the seasons. You can also expect phenomenal presentation. It’s a feast for your eyes as well as your tummy. John Adams Sword is a popular item. Need comfort? Rumor has it that the Buffalo Meatloaf is always available.
Fresh foods are grown not only at Fair Oaks Farm but at other farms within the region. Between lunch and dinner, guests can tour the kitchen. When it is time to dine, always begin with Fair Oaks Farm award-winning cheese. Any meat from the farm will be labeled. Enjoy the cornbread while you wait for your meal.
Farmhouse Restaurant at Fair Oaks
754 N 600 E
Fair Oaks, IN 47943
Farmhouse Restaurant Hours:
Tuesday and Wednesday: 10:30 AM – 8:00 PM
Thursday and Saturday: 10:30 AM – 9:00 PM
Sunday: 10:30 AM – 8:00 PM
Food at this northern Indiana farm-to-table destination is sourced from local farms or is directly from the Joseph Decuis farm. You don’t have to head to Japan for delicious Wagyu beef. They raise it here, too. In fact, they are the only restaurant in the United States raising Wagyu beef using Japanese traditions of “all-natural, humane, drug-free, stress-free” beef fed a special vegetarian diet. Save the jeans, it’s business casual here only. Reservations are recommended so please call ahead.
Joseph Decuis Restaurant
191 N Main Street
Roanoke, IN 46783
Joseph Decuis Restaurant Hours:
Monday – Saturday: 5:30 PM – 10 PM
Oh, yes, there is locally-sourced food here. There’s also coffee beans sourced directly from the farmers who grow them. The menu holds favorites like pizza, sandwiches, and even kid-friendly food. You won’t find any packaged mixes or tin cans–the soups and bread at Light Rail Village Cafe are all homemade. You can order “to go” when you are in a rush. Just call.
This is how burgers should be done: grass-fed beef in creative pairings. Even the tater tots are all grown up. They are made from sweet potatoes and served with a delicious grainy mustard. Pair them or the blue cheese fries with any mouthwatering burger. Matched with local beer and finished with homemade dessert, this 26-seat restaurant manages to combine great service with burger perfection. Look for sandwiches, salads, and entrees to mix it up.
137 S Calumet Road
Chesterton, IN 46304
Octave Grill Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 3 PM – 10 PM
Friday: 3 PM – 11 PM
Saturday: 12 PM – 11 PM
Sunday: 12 PM – 9 PM
Everyone raves about the cute decor inside Creighton’s Crazy Egg Cafe. Then they rave about the locally-sourced meats, eggs (from their own egg farms), and the noodles from an Amish noodle company that actually uses the eggs from their farm in the making of their noodles! There’s even local honey. Locals recommend the bacon gravy skillet and the chai tea. Stay on top of the Facebook Page for special events and holiday hour updates.
Enter the welcoming atmosphere that is One Ten. Then? Dig into the farm-to-table menu. They source their foods from Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, and Kentucky. This is accessible food. It’s a meat and potatoes kind of place, industrial, yet warm, with an emphasis on the meat. Bison and grass-fed beef burgers are tops. Yes, there are gluten-free and vegetarian items available here too. They are marked on the menu so there won’t be any guessing. It is for those aged 21+. Call, do not email, for reservations.
Nearby growers supply the foods at this casual, relaxed farm-to-fork restaurant. Duck nachos and chicken pot pie are popular. So, too, is the extensive selection of beers on tap. Whether you want gluten-free, vegetarian, or vegan meal options, they have it. The menu is clearly marked so you won’t have to waste any time. Add in a kid’s menu that the little ones will actually enjoy and you have one fab dining option.
Rocky River Tap and Table
1032 E University Drive
Granger, IN 46530
Rocky River Tap and Table Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 11 AM – 10 PM
Friday and Saturday: 11 AM – 11 PM
Sunday: 11 AM – 9 PM
They call it “ambitiously bold, impressively fresh Italian Cuisine.” When was the last time you had homemade pasta? It’s probably been awhile. But that’s okay because Sage can introduce you to an elevated dining experience. Dishes are creative, thoughtful, and always feature local produce. It’s a win all-around. Add in the beer, wine, and liquor selection, creative specials like the “157” (a spoof off the address), and get ready for serious tagliatelle. My Italian grandma would approve.
157 W Lincolnway
Valparaiso, IN 46383
Sage Restaurant Hours:
Monday through Thursday: 11 AM – 9 PM
Friday and Saturday: 11 AM – 10 PM
Sunday: 3 PM – 8 PM
There’s no freezer here. You won’t find tin cans either. It’s a fact that the folks at Spire Farm to Fork Cuisine are particularly proud of. The only thing you’ll find frozen here…is the ice cream! You can find a huge list of their suppliers from farms mostly in the state of Indiana. It’s upscale casual, but you won’t feel out of place in your favorite jeans or cotton dress. There is seating inside or out (seasonally appropriate) so you can relax in the open design or take in the golf course view. Whatever you do, don’t skip dessert.
Spire Farm to Fork Cuisine
299 W Johnson Rd
LaPorte, IN 46350
Spire Farm to Fork Cuisine Hours:
Monday – Saturday: 11 AM – 9 PM
Scratch-made food prepared thoughtfully. There’s something for everyone here, including vegetarian and vegan options. Breakfast is served all day, and with dishes made from Indiana cage-free eggs, you know it’s going to be good. Indiana bison, local honey, seasonal produce…the menu is eclectic and interesting. It’s what you’d expect from this artsy hangout.
Third Coast Spice Cafe
761 Indian Boundary Road #6
Chesterton, IN 46304
Third Coast Spice Cafe Hours:
Monday – Sunday: 6 AM – 3 PM
It doesn’t matter if it is what you are eating or what you are drinking, Valley strives to ensure it is locally-sourced. Every loves the market price beef and the Amish chicken. They have a way with food (and drink) here. It’s comfortable, classy, and inviting. Even non-martini drinkers rave about the salted caramel martini. Is there anything this farm-to-fork restaurant can’t do well? Nope and nope. Valley Kitchen and Bar
55 Franklin Street
Valparaiso, IN 46383
Valley Kitchen and Bar Hours:
Sunday – Thursday: 4 PM – 9 PM
Friday and Saturday: 4 PM – 10 PMTHIS BUSINESS IS CHANGING INTO A MORE UPSCALE TACO RESTAURANT. CLOSED 1/2017.
Central Indiana Farm-to-Table Restaurants
There’s a slew of local farmers that supply their products to Bluebeard Indy. The kitchen churns out amazing contemporary American dishes. The menu changes each day to reflect the farm-fresh produce and products available. You can view each day’s menu on the Facebook Page (linked below). Hope that the bread pudding is on the dessert menu. You won’t regret it. Craft beers on tap. In the summer, sit outside on the patio.
CAFE PATACHOU — They like to call it a “student union for adults.” Cafe Patachou opened its doors back in 1989. It was one of the first to serve foods prepared with local ingredients. You’ll find a few of these restaurants around the Indianapolis area (and the airport). Free range eggs, baked goods from local vendors, and an emphasis on “fresh” keep regulars returning.
4901 North Pennsylvania Street
Indianapolis, IN 46205
8697 River Crossing Boulevard
Indianapolis, IN 46240
225 West Washington Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204
4733 126th Street
Carmel, IN 46032
14390 Clay Terrace Blvd.
Carmel, IN 46032
Situated inside the Alexander Hotel, Cerulean is fine dining in a modern setting. The locally-sourced food is prepared by a James Beard Award nominee so you know you are in for a treat. Save room for the unique desserts. Chestnut bombe or raspberry creme brulee? The offerings change with the seasons, but that’s not a problem. It’s all good–and beautiful. Sip on your French press coffee makes for a fabulous ending to a memorable meal.
339 South Delaware Street
Indianapolis, IN 46225
Monday – Thursday: 11 AM – 2 PM, 5 to 9 PM F–S 5 to 10
Friday: 11 AM – 2 PM, 5 PM – 10 PM
Saturday: 5 PM – 10 PM
A fire may be burning in the fireplace if you arrive at the first-floor farmhouse restaurant during the winter months. Visitors rave about the herbed chicken salad and the herb barn lemonade, a mixture of lemonade with milk and ginger ale. Groups of four or more should call ahead. Do know that October is Brown County’s busy season so you can expect a wait if you are arriving during prime hours, most likely even with a reservation. It’s worth it.
The Farmhouse Cafe at the Flower and Herb Barn
5171 Beanblossom Road
Nineveh, IN 461634
The Farmhouse Cafe Hours:
Lunch: Daily: 11 AM- 4 PM
Dinner: Tuesday – Saturday: 5 PM – 8 PM
Fischer Farms in southern Indiana supplies the dry-aged beef, Viking Lamb in eastern Indiana supplies the lamb, while Gunthorp Farms in northern Indiana brings in the free-range chickens, as well as turkey, pork, and duck. Hungry yet? If not, the artisan bread, fresh seasonings, and farmstead cheeses will probably do it. Look for the bacon of the month club and the “A Dozen Cheeses Before You Die” option. Fresh sandwiches, gelato, small plates, craft beer, and wines make it hard to decide.
Locally-sourced food is worked into the menu at Lafayette’s longest running currently operating fine dining restaurant. It’s fresh food with a difference: this is an Italian restaurant. The owners grow much of the produce themselves on their Small Wonder Farm and rely on other local suppliers and farms to fill-in-the-blanks. Gluten issues? There is gluten-free and whole wheat pasta. Your food isn’t cooked until it is ordered. It’s the kind of difference you can taste. Yes, there is even an outside patio for those perfect Indiana days.
Chef-owned and operated, it’s impossible to resist any restaurant with an outdoor smoker. Try the barbecue pork. It’s available by the pound. If that isn’t your style, the seasonal menu could include grilled salmon or free range chicken. Round it out with a beautiful side. Just be sure to end your meal with that Hoosier favorite: sugar cream pie. It’s an Indiana tradition and a popular menu item or, really, you can’t go wrong with any pie–by the slice or buy the whole darn thing. Yes, Locally Grown Gardens is open year round, so you have no reason not to try the bounty of the season, every season.
THE LOFT RESTAURANT AT TRADERS POINT CREAMERY
Close to everything and Indiana’s only organic dairy farm (at the time of this writing), Traders Point Creamery receives top marks for its locally grown and raised dairy items. Fresh ice cream, yogurt, and milk will never taste better. The lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch feature menu items that are likely grown on the property.
The Loft Restaurant
9101 Moore Road
Zionsville, Indiana 46077
The Loft Restaurant Hours:
Lunch: Monday – Saturday 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM
Brunch: Sunday 9:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Dinner: Tuesday – Thursday, Sunday: 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Friday – Saturday: 5:00 PM – 9:30 PM
At first glance, The Mug might look like your typical drive-in restaurant, but looks are definitely deceiving. This food may be served quickly, but it’s also received from the local area using free-range, antibiotic-free cows, pigs, and chickens. Locals will remember the building as the old “Frosty Mug” space. Experience “farm-to-curb” cuisine in your car, just order from the “Mud Hops,” or pop inside for sandwiches, burgers, hot dogs, and ice cream.
117 Apple Street
Greenfield, IN 46140
The Mug Greenfield Hours:
Sunday — Thursday: 11 AM – 8:30 PM
Friday and Saturday: 11 AM – 9:30 PM
Find this one right off the Monon Trail. It’s a cafeteria-style restaurant, but it’s certainly not anything that resembled what they served at your local high school. Menus change here too so you should expect something a little different each time. They are known for their scrumptious olive oil cake. You’ll also find Stumptown Coffee’s headline-making brewing system–the only place outside of Portland, Oregon to use it. All proceeds directly benefit the Patachou Foundation, which according to their website is feeding “at-risk and food insecure children in the Indianapolis community.”
902 E 64th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46220
Public Greens Hours:
Tuesday-Saturday 8:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Sunday & Monday 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Later weekend hours weather dependent
They begin with scratch-made soups and salad dressings. It only gets better. A few of their signature dishes include Sesame Salmon, Meatloaf with Tomato Jam, and Breakfast Tacos. Vegan and vegetarian offerings let everyone in on the fun. They use fresh, local ingredients–and it is even kid-friendly. They call it “fresh, honest food.” You’ll call it “perfection.”
You know the food will always be amazing at Recess, from award-winning Chef Greg Hardesty. You’ll find a menu that frequently changes to coincide with the available local ingredients. Indianapolis is one of only two cities to have three restaurants that made Zagat’s list of “Best Farm-to-Table Restaurants.” Guess which one is on it?
4907 North College Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46205
Tuesday – Saturday: 5:30 PM – 10:30 PM
With a background in farming, restaurants, and nutrition, the owners (and executive chefs) are committed to providing a farm-to-table experience, “restoring authenticity to food from the ground up.” At Restauration, locally-sourced foods aren’t just something they try to do, it’s the way the entire menu is built. Weekly specials are every bit as appealing as the rest of the menu. Deciding is tough. This is a fantastic option for those with food allergies or special diets. Restauration
731 Main Street
Lafayette, IN 47901
THIS BUSINESS IS CURRENTLY CLOSED As OF 1/2017 DUE TO EXTREME WATER DAMAGE.
Southern Indiana Farm-to-Table Restaurants
There are places you visit and enjoy and then there are places you visit, enjoy, and can’t wait until you can visit again. Visit FARM Bloomington once and it may become a habit. But that’s okay since the menu here is also focused on “using local foods with global flavors.” You’ll find a changing seasonal menu and daily specials set inside one appealing space. It was once the Oddfellows building. If you feel like a little karaoke or a drink with a friend, head downstairs to the Root Cellar Lounge.
108 East Kirkwood Avenue
Bloomington, Indiana 47408
Farm Bloomington Hours
Tuesday – Friday: 7 AM – 10 PM
Saturday: 10 AM – 10 PM
Sunday: 10 AM – 9 PM
Breakfast: Tuesday – Friday: 7 AM – 11 AM
Lunch: Tuesday – Friday: 11 AM – 3 PM
Supper: Tuesday – Saturday: 5 PM– 10 PM
Dinner Sous Chef Sunday: 5 PM – 9 PM
Brunch: Saturday and Sunday from 10 AM – 3 PM
Farm fresh eggs, local greens, and pasture-raised pork from a farm that’s a mere seven miles away make this farm-to-table barbecue restaurant one of the best in class. They even pickle their own jalapenos. It’s decorated so nice it will remind you of Pinterest. In other words: this ain’t your typical barbecue joint. It’s nice, clean, and the food is fab. Pulled pork or the brisket is always a good choice.
Jefferson Street BBQ
101 N Jefferson Street
Converse, IN 46919
Jefferson Street BBQ Hours
Tuesday – Thursday: 11 AM – 8 PM
Friday: 11 AM – 9 PM
Saturday: 12 PM – 9 PM
Closed Sunday and Monday
THE KITCHEN AT THE LOFT
There’s one more reason to visit Richmond, Indiana’s Depot District–this locally-sourced restaurant that’s housed in the old Ghyslain building. Ghyslain Chocolatier desserts are still available, but the Loft holds its own when it comes to the menu. If you want color and something light: try the Cobb Salad. For a heartier appetite, get the open-faced meatloaf sandwich (trust me on this one) with a side of sweet potato fries. You won’t be disappointed.
The Kitchen at the Loft
416 N 10th Street
The Kitchen at the Loft Hours
Tuesday – Thursday: 10:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Friday and Saturday: 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM
Sunday and Monday: Closed
They may pride themselves on their classic British fish and chips (he is from Britain), but there is so much more here–even vegan and gluten-free options. Enjoy Indiana meats, locally-sourced eggs, and items pulled from their own urban garden (to name a few). The chicken curry receives frequent applause. Whatever you do, end the meal with the sticky toffee pudding or the bread pudding with caramel. If you are lucky, you may catch one of their live music events, an art, or a photography show here. The eclectic and inviting space makes you feel at home.
Payne’s Cafe and Restaurant
4925 Kaybee Drive
Gas City, IN 46933
Payne’s Restaurant Hours:
Monday – Friday: 10:30 AM – 10 PM
Saturday: 9 AM – 10 PM
Sunday: 11 AM – 10 PM
Dine inside what was once the 11,000 square foot converted chicken coop but is now the Restaurant at Walhill Farm. You’d never know its past. It’s all a part of the 250-acre working farm. Look for live music every Wednesday and Friday night. When the weather cooperates, you’ll find it outside at the gazebo. Poke around in the bread basket for the cinnamon raisin walnut bread. But what will you order? The eggs are laid by free range chickens on the farm. Everything is locally sourced whenever possible. Follow it up with coffee from a French press and the honey creme brulee or the bread pudding. The homemade sausages receive such rave reviews, you can order them with your dessert to take home.
The Restaurant at Walhill Farm
857 Six Pine Ranch Rd
Batesville, IN 47006
Hours for the Restaurant at Walhill Farm
Tuesday – Thursday: 4:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Friday and Saturday: 4:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Sunday and Monday: Closed
It’s a pre-Civil War farm, and Indiana’s oldest herb farm, with a fascinating history that includes Morgan’s Raiders. Now, it’s a herb farm that holds cooking and gardening classes, in addition to a winery, and gift shop. They use produce of the season and herbs from the garden. Each dish is accompanied by an edible herb or flower as garnish.
Stream Cliff Farm
8225 S County Road 90 W
Commiskey, IN 47227
Stream Cliff Farm Hours:
Opens for the season March 29, 2017.
Wednesday – Saturday: 11 AM – 4 PM
Sunday: 12 PM – 4 PM
Closed: Monday and Tuesday
Farm Fresh Food at Indiana Restaurants
Try something different. Turn to the restaurants above for Hoosier-made food from Indiana farms. With so much variety and Indiana’s typical bounty of fresh fruits and veggies, dinner will never be the same.
As always, please call ahead before making a special trip. Hours can change, vacations happen, and sometimes businesses close entirely. Double-check and plan ahead.
I’m Jessica Nunemaker and THIS is Little Indiana.
Small towns: destinations, not drive-thrus. Just remember to tell them you saw it on Little Indiana.