We'll Drink to That: Great local eats share the spotlight at area bars

Photography By BlueKrishna Photography | February 10, 2016
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Compiled by Maggie Weaver
There are bars. And then there are bars with great food. We’re talking about the places we go for a pint and great eats—like cauliflower tempura, duck tacos or pad Thai salad. Luckily for us, we’ve got fantastic bar food in spades in Michiana. Here are just some of our favorites:
 
Constant Spring
Signature Dish: The Pad Thai Salad: tender greens topped with chicken, scallions, shredded carrots, cilantro 
and peanuts.
 
What’s Local? “The Spring” purchases the majority of its meats locally and buys produce from Clay Bottom Farm and Sustainable Greens.
 
Popular Favorites: The Newmann Reuben: a pulled pork Reuben 
with slaw, Swiss cheese and 
Russian dressing.
Some of the best desserts around! Margaret Potock of Happy Dance Cupcakes bakes the desserts that I want to eat. Good food abounds at Constant Spring, but when I go I usually want to eat my dessert first.
—Tara Swartzendruber-Landis
Constant Spring

219 S. Main St., Goshen, IN
Crooked Ewe Brewery & Ale House
Signature Dish: With a menu this eclectic, it’s nearly impossible to pin one down, but the Ewe Tso (cauliflower tempura) or the Anson Mills (cold-smoked chicken deep-fried in lemon and basil batter served on heirloom grits) are standouts.
What’s Local? If you ask, Crooked 
Ewe will give you a list of all of the farms they source from—over 20 are on the list!
 
Popular Favorites: Brisket, Ewe Tso, Cast Iron Ewe Burger.
 
Their General Tso’s Cauliflower (“Ewe Tso”) is life changing. Good beer, wonderful staff and the river view are a plus, but you guys, seriously, that cauliflower...
—Christine Cox
Crooked Ewe Brewery & Ale House

1074 Lincoln Way E.,
South Bend, IN

 
Tapistry Brewing
Signature Dish: The Wisconsin Dip: house-smoked roast beef, aged Michigan white cheddar and horseradish-chive sauce on Bit of Swiss Italian bread.
 
What’s Local? All of Tapistry’s breads are from Bit of Swiss (Stevensville, Michigan). Oyster mushrooms, heirloom tomatoes and corned beef are also locally sourced.
 
Popular Favorites: Blonde on Blonde: house-smoked turkey breast, creamy mustard coleslaw, aged Michigan white cheddar and truffle aioli on Bit of Swiss Paesano.
 
Tapistry Brewing bested 82 other entries at the Great American Beer Festival, held in Denver, winning a bronze in the Robust Porter category for their Peck’s Porter. Not bad for a recently opened brewery and taproom with an artisan menu. Which may be why this sleek space with walls decorated with works by local artists is often jam-packed. There’s always something new brewing.
—Jane Ammeson
Tapistry Brewing

4236 Lake St., Bridgman, MI
 
Fiddler’s Hearth
 
Signature Dish: The Salmon of Knowledge: a salmon fillet rolled in crushed hazelnuts, pan-seared and finished in the oven, then topped with parsley sauce and capers.
 
What’s Local? Fiddler’s Hearth features fresh and local seasonal ingredients from the Purple Porch Co-op, the Unity Gardens, Kankakee Wetlands Organic Gardens and others.
 
Popular Favorites: Wrapped in a page from the South Bend Tribune, the fish and chips is a customer favorite. The cod is firm and meaty, the fries are hand-cut and the tartar sauce 
is housemade.
 
Fiddler’s Hearth is my favorite cozy downtown South Bend spot for music, dinner and a pint of regional ale. The menu is filled with delicious Irish gems, like the comforting shepherd’s pie and creative boxties (Irish potato pancakes). Currently I’m most enamored with the Pear and Walnut Salad with goat cheese and vanilla bean dressing, and the flourless chocolate cake. You can’t go wrong.
—Katharine Carpenter
Fiddler’s Hearth 

127 N. Main St., South Bend, IN

LaSalle Kitchen and Tavern
Signature Dish: The LKT Burger: a special blend of top sirloin and smoked brisket, ground in-house and topped with local Gouda, tobacco onions and Neuske’s bacon aioli, served on a Bit of Swiss cheddar bun.
 
What’s Local? All of LaSalle’s 
meats, produce and breads are locally sourced.
 
Popular Favorites: The Duck 
Confit Poutine, complete with a sunny-side-up egg.
 
LaSalle Kitchen and Tavern is a cozy, inviting place to get a drink and enjoy great live music. I like to go for a relaxing late dinner on weekends. The inside of the restaurant is all beautiful brick and wood, and the entrance is in the back of LaSalle Grill, so LKT has the feel of an old-fashioned, comfortable hangout. A lot of the menu is local, which is great to have downtown.
—Brittany Collins
LaSalle Kitchen and Tavern

115 W. Colfax Ave., South Bend, IN

 
South Bend Brew Werks
 
Signature Dish: I  the Desert, a mildly spicy flatbread pizza: Southwest cream cheese sauce topped with provolone, habanero cheddar and chicken, garnished with mixed greens.
 
What’s Local? Almost everything! Ingredients come from the Purple Porch Co-op, the South Bend Farmers Market and Oh Mamma’s.
 
Popular Favorites: The 3-Way Chatter Grilled Cheese: three cheeses (smoky, spicy, smooth) 
with bacon.
 
Though of course the beer is a highlight here, the real winner is the food. Their Sunday brunch is wonderful. I especially recommend their Elvis waffle: gooey peanut butter and bananas on top of a fluffy, crispy waffle—not too big and not too small. The seasonal patio out front is a great place to meet a friend for a drink in warmer weather.
—Brittany Collins
South Bend Brew Werks

216 S. Michigan St., South Bend, IN

 
Oak & Alley
 
Signature Dish: The O&A Burger, a customizable beef burger on a pretzel roll.
 
What’s Local? Whenever local seasonal produce is available, Oak & Alley serves it right up!
 
Popular Favorites: Definitely the burger! But keep an eye out for Oak & Alley’s legendary from-scratch biscuits and gravy late-nights on 
the weekends.
 
Oak & Alley exudes a sort of rugged charm that I absolutely love. Everything they serve there, food and drinks both, is exceptional. Their Meat and Cheese board is out of this world!
—MariJean Sanders
Oak and Alley

114 S. Buffalo St., Warsaw, IN

Greenbush Brewing Company
 
Signature Dish: Greenbush’s 
house-smoked barbecue: brisket, pulled pork, pulled chicken, Texas hot link sausage.
 
What’s Local? Greenbush 
includes as many locally sourced items as possible on their menu, including sourcing from their own Greenbush Farm.
 
Popular Favorites: House-smoked beef brisket.
Meat lovers, veggie eaters, mac ’n’ cheese enthusiasts—rejoice! Aside from the killer beer, there’s something for everyone at Greenbush.
—Brynn Hines
Greenbush Brewing Company

5885 Sawyer Rd., Sawyer, MI

 
Goshen Brewing Company
 
Signature Dish: House-smoked duck tacos, served on corn tortillas with pico de gallo, lime, cilantro and a roasted poblano aioli.
 
What’s Local? Nearly everything! Goshen Brewing works hard to make sure their ingredients are local, organic and from socially responsible sellers.
 
Popular Favorites: The pulled pork sandwich: pork shoulder smoked in-house for 14 hours and topped with a spicy Carolina barbecue sauce and fennel slaw.
“I run into Jesse Shoemaker, the chef at Goshen Brewing Company, at the farmers market on a regular basis. The sourcing, creative recipes, in-house smoking and fresh local meats and produce are the secret to the delicious food they serve.”
—Victoria Brenneman
Goshen Brewing Company

315 W. Washington St., Goshen, IN

Article from Edible Michiana at http://ediblemichiana.ediblecommunities.com/eat/well-drink-great-local-eats-share-spotlight-area-bars
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