Melting Pot: Ethnic Eats Find a Hub in Fountain Square
Just a mile southeast of downtown Indianapolis, the artsy enclave of Fountain Square is among the city's most in-demand dining destinations for all sorts of ethnic cuisines. A host of restaurants stand ready to satisfy any food craving. Eat your way through the neighborhood starting with our list of can't-miss spots.
This unusual taqueria/tiki bar hybrid excels at fresh tortilla chips served with chunky guacamole and stripped-down street tacos stuffed full of savory carne asada, grilled tilapia, tender pork, chicken or seafood garnished with any number of sauces and salsas, all made in house. Whatever you order, wash it down with the spicy house specialty margarita with a chili powder–dusted rim.
Mama Irma Restaurant
One of the few Peruvian places in the city, Mama Irma has an impressive offering of traditional South American ceviches, soups, stews and seafood. Steak-based plates like the lomo saltado sirloin tips and the tallarin con Huancaina steak and spaghetti are delicious, but the papa rellena is the dish to try – picture a crisp, lightly fried crust of mashed potatoes wrapped around a filling of ground beef, eggs and olives.
Tortas Guicho Dominguez y el Cubanito
Bring your heartiest appetite to this bright, cheerful Mexican eatery. The stuffed sandwiches on soft round bread rolls are gigantic, all served with tomato, jalapeño and avocado (ask for co-owner Laura Zarco's salsa if you like it hot and spicy). The so-called celebrity tortas go by famous aliases. Try the popular Shakira, piled high with breaded steak, Mexican sausage and mozzarella cheese.
With distinctive flavors rooted in coconut, lime and chiles, Thai cuisine offers an inimitable taste profile all its own. Amid a menu of tasty noodles, rice, stir-fries, curries and seafood specialties, the classic pad Thai stands out as the ultimate measuring stick – a fresh mélange of rice noodles with meat, chicken or shrimp; egg; scallions; bean sprouts and chopped peanuts. The curry puffs stuffed with chicken and potatoes also get rave reviews.
Santorini Greek Kitchen
Owner Taki Sawi staged an impressive comeback after an electrical fire damaged his popular restaurant two years ago, and today Santorini is better than ever. A loyal crowd of customers swears by the pillowy pita bread, saganaki (a skillet of fried cheese that is set afire tableside), spicy fried tomato balls and massive sharable combination platters loaded with spanakopita, dolmades and other traditional Greek offerings. Belly dancers add to the ambiance on the weekends.
B's Po Boy
Snag a true taste of N'awlins at one of the newest kids on the block, touting the most authentic po' boy in town. This place takes its sandwiches so seriously that it sources Leidenheimer bread directly from New Orleans for the most authentic experience. Filling choices include barbecued pulled pork, Creole chicken salad and chipped roast beef, but Cajun purists prefer the Louisiana fried shrimp, andouille sausage or fried oysters with a cup of gumbo or a scoop of Creole slaw on the side.