A Paleo Influenced Diner

Healthy Eating Hits a Home Run with Nook

By / Photography By Jennifer Rubenstein | February 03, 2018
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Salmon Taco, $10 at Nook

Caveman diet (Paleo), whole30, keto, vegan - What do these all have in common? They are all ways more and more Americans are eating. They are lifestyles not just diets. And Americans love to eat out. However, Indiana isn’t known for leading the charge with places who cater to these lifestyles. We are a community of fast food, large portioned comfort food with a basket of bread at the beginning of every meal.

However, that is about to change. Entrepreneur, Johnny Vassallo (of Mo’s A Place for Steaks and Mo’s Irish Pubs) realized after a long-term employee changed her food habits due to a major health issue, that she had no place to really eat besides home. It gave him a desire to change that for her as well as all of the other people who either suffer from or choose to lead a healthier lifestyle. And Nook, a Paleo influenced diner was born.


Johnny Vassallo (of Mo’s A Place for Steaks and Mo’s Irish Pubs)

Johnny expressed how he couldn’t imagine how difficult it was for someone who had special dietary needs to eat out. How servers didn’t understand and frankly often make the person who ordered feel guilty or embarrassed about editing an order or how they may have to leave because they simple don’t have anything to offer. In times today when you literally have anything and everything you could possibly want from vegan restaurants to gluten free bakeries, a healthy alternative to a sit down dinner experience just hadn’t hit Indiana yet.

Nook officially opens on February 6 to the public at 15 E. Maryland St. downtown Indianapolis. The walls are filled with encouraging food words and the menu with as the name indicates, Paleo influenced dishes. The menu has been carefully crafted by a host of culinary creatives to include small plates, main courses, bowls, greens, omelettes and even wood fire pizzas and the menu is broken down with those dishes into vegan, Paleo, whole30 and keto suggestions to make ordering a breeze.


The dishes are presented beautifully and are constructed to taste healthy, clean and delicious. They are working to procure as many local sustainable ingredients as possible because sourcing the best ingredients possible is part of the concept of all of Johnny’s restaurants.  

We got a sneak peak to the menu and a few of the stand out menu items recently tried were:

The salmon taco on an almond flour tortilla filled with avocado, cilantro, napa cabbage, pico and avocado creama | $12

The Nook Burger with a Paleo bun, housemate ketchup topped with vegetables and served with sweet potato wedges | $16

The Shiitake, lemon and basil cauliflower pizza on a Paleo crust | $13
The beef broth bowl filled with bone broth, daikon radish, shiitake, noodles, onions and cabbage | $8

Dishes range from $6 to $38 and Nook has a full bar.

2018 is full of new changes, healthier lifestyles and more sustainable restaurants and as Nook’s tagline says, they create flavorful foods that fuel a healthier you.

Nook 15 E. Maryland St. | Indianapolis | NookPaleo.com


Photo 1: Salmon Taco | $11
Photo 2: Shiitake, Lemon & Basil Cauliflower Pizza | $13
Photo 4: Nook Burger with Sweet Potato Fries | $16
Article from Edible Indy at http://edibleindy.ediblecommunities.com/eat/healthy-eating-hits-home-run-nook
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